Category Archives: Travel blog

Puerto de la Cruz swim pool

Holiday in Tenerife

It was the end of March 2017, and I was looking for a new holiday. As my work is mainly contracting in telecoms, I can go on holiday three times per year.

Every 3-4 months, I am taking my time off for about ten days, and, together with my wife, we are looking to spend our holiday in the most pleasant way possible. When planning to travel, we check Renata’s travel website first, a good source of information for traveling.

For this time we choose a holiday in Tenerife, an excellent price for flight tickets and accommodation in March – April. We also rented a car from the airport, which was about 100 euros for seven days with insurance included. What a deal, right? Not the best one, it was a Fiat Albea, but it got the job done.

All our spendings were about 1500 euros for both of us, with no restrictions at all. I always taste the local beer and foods, so restaurants were daily ours to enjoy.

We visited the city, Loro Park, for the tropical birds, Tenerife Zoo Monkey Park and Parque Nacional Las Canadas del Teide’s volcanic rock formations, Mount Teide – Tenerife’s tallest peak, the popular beach resort of Los Gigantes, and many other amazing locations.

Puerto de la Cruz

We rented about 200 square metes apartment in Puerto de la Cruz for 300 euros per eight nights for the accommodation, which is an amazing price. We had a view of the ocean and a  restaurant on the first floor. Very handy, right?

We were lucky with the weather, sunny for all days. Here are some views of the city – I always have my camera with me:

We enjoyed delicious tapas at Rosa Negra restaurant, good quality fresh food at Saigon Delice, excellent crepes at Advans Cafeteria – Creperia. These are a few locations I can recommend for great services. Beer is good, and I would recommend Dorada, a local one which you should not miss.

Los Gigantes

The cliffs at Los Gigantes are something you should not miss on your holiday in Tenerife. Located near the resort town with the same name, they are among the island’s major attractions. A black sand volcanic beach lies between the cliffs and the marina, which has a boulevard with many restaurants you can choose from.

I am in love with the mountains, and Tenerife has a lot to offer:

Anaga Rural Park Tenerife

Anaga Park is a highland area with sharp peaks and deep ravines populated with laurel trees and various vegetation. It is less than an hour’s drive from La Laguna and the island capital, Santa Cruz.

You can walk along the Vueltas de Taganana trail to enjoy the lush laurel forest and the historic hamlet, Taganana.  If you want to spend the night in the area, you can book at the hostel, Montes de Anaga, or you can stay at one of the rural hotels or bed and breakfasts within the park.

El Teide – Pico Del Teide

In Teide National Park, you will find El Teide, which is the Earth’s third-tallest volcanic structure. The views are out of this world because of its history of destructive eruptions.

Teide is the most visited tourist attraction in Spain and the eighth-most visited globally, with about 3 million visitors every year. For the landscape photos, I highly recommend using a tripod with your camera. This time I didn’t have one with me, and I regret my photos not being as good as possible.

Zoo parks in Tenerife are amazing, one of the most complex and well maintained in the world:

Jungle Park in Tenerife

Jungle Park is a zoological and botanical home to a large variety of animals and plants. There are also to enjoy daily shows with exotic birds and birds of prey.

Colorful birds from all areas: falcons, marabous, vultures, cranes, eagles, ibises, flamingos, swans, storks, parrots, macaws, and many others:

You will also find here a large variety of animals like lemurs, monkeys, turtles, deers, and lizards:

Loro Park in Tenerife

Loro Parque is the most beloved animal park adventure, with over 30 000 animals housed.

Planet Penguin is home to over 200 penguins, the spectacular Orca Ocean where you can watch the killer whales demonstrating their agility, the acrobatic dolphins, and see thousands of different species of fish and corals at the Loro Parque’s Aquarium.

Wander through the lush tropical forest and uncover animals and birds from every Earth’s areas

Tenerife has a lot to offer and is a trip I gladly recommend to anyone who loves traveling. We had a dream journey, and it will remain one of the most beautiful memories for my wife and me.

For tips about good prices and great locations, please comment below, and I will gladly answer. I hope you enjoyed my presentation. Good luck in your journey!

Travel to Barcelona – About Barcelona

This was our second time when me and my wife went to Spain. It was a short few days trip to Barcelona since my wife was putting pressure on me for a while to visit this great city. She was right; it is a must-visit location for everyone enjoying traveling, architecture, excellent foods, and amazing traditions.

In all my trips before September 2018, I used my previous camera Sony A6000 with Sony SEL 18200 E 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 OSS lens to take pictures. If you like the quality of the images shown below and want to find out more about these fantastic photo gear, you can read the review I wrote for the camera here and the lens here.

Okay … now let’s go back to the trip.

Tips for saving money

We booked plane tickets and accommodation a few weeks before traveling to get the best price possible. Accommodation is usually with Booking.com, but through a cashback site – like Bonus way – so we never spend too much on a hotel and travel trip. These are only examples, and you can choose what fits you best in your area. My point is that the difference between booking travel tickets and hotel a few weeks before and booking them a few days before or on location can be over $100. I am sure you can spend it on something else for your pleasure.

We also booked tickets for locations to visit online (in advance), so in this way, you can reduce to half your expenses for attending the tourist attractions. And for Barcelona, please believe me – it will save you a lot.

About driving in Barcelona, I will never advise you to rent a car. The traffic is terrible, so better use the local transport by buying all-day tickets or subscriptions for a few days.

About Barcelona

It is Catalonia’s capital and the largest city in the area, and the second most populated city in Spain. With a population of over 1.6 million, it has a Mediterranean port, hosting for the Olympics, a multicultural meeting place, and a culinary haven.

Barcelona is about all this and more. A unique, inspiring destination for your senses, an eye-catching city with unique architectural views, a home for artists, musicians, and fashion designers. It is delightful to walk around its different neighborhoods, every one of them offering a distinctive taste that makes Barcelona a unique dish for the visitor.

Tourist attractions in Barcelona

There is an enormous number of attractions to visit in Barcelona. The most famous are:

The most visited monument of Barcelona – Sagrada Familia, which is the Gaudi‘s unachieved cathedral. Still under construction when we arrived at the location, I suppose it will be for many more years. Here are some photos I’ve shot in that day:

Another impressive Gaudi building at the Passeig de Gracia – La Pedrera. It is an unusual facade for this last civil work. Also named La Casa Mila, this fantastic building does not have a single straight line, as the facade is designed to make it impossible to draw a vertical line from the ground to the roof.

 

A XIV century gothic church located at the seaside, which is ornate with the famous stained-glass windows – Santa Maria Del Mar

The Museum of Contemporary Art of Barcelona – It is a work by Richard Meier. It is dedicated to works from the second part of the 20th century, and there are several works in the permanent collection and, from time to time, some exciting exhibitions.

The Picasso Museum – is the most visited in Barcelona, both for the artist’s work and for the architectural design.

Las Ramblas and the Gothic Quarter – Las Ramblas were where flowers are sold and where locals from Barcelona used to meet. It is a great place to admire the street artists and to look at the alive statues. The Gothic Quarter is a place to walk around the streets near the cathedral. There are lots of old antique dealers, feathers, and umbrellas merchants. A lot of historical events took place there.

Barceloneta and Port Olimpic – It is the traditional area for fishers and sailors. It is a passage before reaching the beach with Mediterranean colors and restaurants with delicious foods.

Poble Espanyol – ​​an open-air village museum with buildings and crafts from all over Spain

Parc de Montjuic – 590 feet high above sea level, it served as a defense hub in the past, protecting the city against possible invasion. It is a place of rare beauty with plenty of things to do and places to visit – like museums, the  Miró FoundationOlympic Stadium, and Montjuïc Palace.

We were wandering on Barcelona streets for three incredible days, visiting as many attractions as we could, and stopping each other there for the delicious foods and drinks. It is a great place to visit, and we are thinking of giving it a second try, just because three days are not enough for this one.

Want to visit Barcelona? Please plan at least a week as you’ll have plenty to do with your time.

I hope you enjoyed my general presentation and now have a better idea about what you can visit and what you can do in the great city of Barcelona. Please comment below if you have any questions or if you want to add something from your experiences.

Thanks for reading through the end of my visit to Barcelona!

Travel to Spain – me and my wife

It was October 2016. Being a sweltering country during summer, my wife and I decided to enjoy Spain in autumn – when nature is still in its splendor, but temperature and prices go down a little.

Here are some travel tips: first we chose to rich Seville by plane, for this we bought tickets about two months before – a reasonable price. For accommodation, we are using Booking.com, but through Bonusway.com …these are examples only, please google for the ones which suit you best.

For keeping your travel budget low, the main idea is to book flights and accommodation a few weeks before traveling and, if possible, to get some cashback.

For this trip, we went straight to Seville (which become our ”base”), and from there on, we traveled by train and bus to visit the nearest locations. It maybe doesn’t sound like the best idea, but wait a bit to see how many tourist attractions we’ve reached in just nine days.

Seville

It is the capital and the largest city in Andalusia. It has a population of about 690,000, being the 4th biggest city in Spain. You will find the Alcázar palace complex in the old town, which was amazing to visit – one of our favorite attractions from Seville.

The largest gothic church and the third-largest church globally, the Catedral de Santa María de la Sede, is imposing. Unesco is registered as a world heritage site in 1987 – better known as Seville Cathedral, a Roman Catholic cathedral.

The Torre del Oro – a military watchtower – is also a beautiful place to visit. I didn’t met the best weather conditions for photography (as you’ll see in the below images), but this never stopped me from shooting – even if only for later memories. Saying that because I am a contributor with Shutterstock, Dreamstime, and Fotolia, where I use to sell my photos – it needs good quality.

The Metropol Parasol is impressive. For a few coins, you can see the city from heights. It is a bizarre wooden structure designed by the German artist Jürgen Mayer and finished in April 2011.

The structure has six parasols in the shape of giant mushrooms, design inspired from Seville Cathedral’s vaults and the ficus trees in Plaza de Cristo de Burgos.

It is organized in four steps: the underground level where you’ll find the Antiquarium, the street level where is the Central Market, and for levels 2 and 3, we have two stages of the panoramic terraces, which are including a restaurant.

Charming view we found in the Plaza de España, where we arrived after the darkness fell. A romantic place where you can rent and use a boat during the night – which is priceless.

There are many more attractions in Seville, but my scope for this post is a general presentation. If, at any point, you want to take a more in-depth look at some location, please ask in the comments below, and I will make a new post – more detailed on the subject.

That was the first day – walking all over and enjoying the great city. In the night, we spoiled in restaurants with local foods and drinks. As a tip – don’t eat where most tourists are going – take a few more steps in not so central areas, and have your meal where locals use too.

Caminito del Rey

Known as ”The King’s Little Path”, Caminito del Rey is a walkway through the steep walls of a narrow gorge in El Chorro – Malaga area.

The walkway, which was partially closed for over a decade, was reopened in 2015 after about four years of work. It is one of the most dangerous touristic routes through the mountains with some tragic deaths count.

Keep in mind that if you visit the canyon, you’ll be provided with a safety helmet. You’ll have to wear the helmet at all times, as crew members are at all times on the route.

The construction began in 1901, and it was ended in 1905. The main scope was to provide workers for two hydroelectric plants to make it possible to walk between them and transport materials.

Here are some photos of this magnificent place:

Cordoba

We traveled by train for less than one hour to reach Cordoba. It is a small town that was a Roman settlement first, after being colonized by Muslims in the 8th century. You will find many Moorish architectural details there – like Mezquita and the Roman bridge.

Here in Cordoba, we enjoyed the food from the best fishery ever – sorry, I don’t remember the name. I recall that it is located on the first street on the right side as you position yourself with the back to the Roman bridge. I hope this will be useful in case you want to taste that fish.

Here below, you can see a picture of the Roman Bridge:

Frigiliana – Costa del Sol

Frigiliana village is located about six km north of Nerja and just over fifty km from Malaga. It is the most picturesque village on Costa del Sol and is exceptionally good looking white houses.

We traveled by bus and moved our base accommodation in Malaga, for visiting (of course Malaga) Frigiliana, Nerja, Granada, and Ronda.

In Frigiliana, you will find a spectacle view, a well-deserved effort to travel to. Wandering the streets is a celebration, and I felt as taken back in time.

The maze of streets, with meticulously maintained white painted houses, provides an overwhelming contrast with the blue skies and red roofs. Flowers everywhere helps to keep a great view.

Granada

About two hours by bus from Malaga, this was the longest route we had in all holiday. It doesn’t felt overwhelming because of the beautiful views we could admire all the way. Andalusia is wonderful, and the magnificent sceneries are not just like ”each-there” … it is astonishing everywhere!

About Granada now – it is the region’s capital, and it is located very close to the mountains Sierra Nevada. Not a very big city, with a friendly population of below 250.000.

The most known tourist attraction is the Alhambra, which was a Nasrid palace city and is also called by Unesco – a world heritage site, well deserved, though. This was the main reason we went there to visit Granada.

Malaga

I personally love Malaga, from the splendid views to the city life with all the foods and tasty beer it offers. I strongly recommend not to miss it if you ever go to visit Spain.

Climbing the hill for the Alcazaba or going to the old historic center of Malaga, visiting museums or cathedrals, simply enjoying the restaurants or nightlife – you have no chance to get bored in there.

There are lots of parks and gardens, and the vegetation was amazing – despite the fact we’ve been there in October.

Nerja

It generally looks like Frigiliana, with the big difference that in Nerja, there are more blocks of flats than houses. As so, the maze of streets and the feeling like living in the past disappears—still a stunning location, with the white homes and the abundance of flowers.

The Balcón de Europa is a great place to visit. It gives overwhelming views over the sea, you will find it in the old town center. The famous Nerja caves are also a tourist attraction in the area – where you can view the remains of one of the ancient locals of Nerja.

Here are some pictures of the city:

Ronda

Ronda was the last city we’ve visited on this trip to Spain, better said – to Andalusia. The rest of the time (about two days) we enjoyed the city life in Malaga. I have this thing … when I go to visit a country, I love to take my time in the end to relax, eat good and taste (for many times – to be sure) the local beer  🙂

Okay … about Ronda – it is a tiny town with a population below 35 000. What makes it very special to me is that a good part of the city is built on top of the cliffs. This is just spectacular:

The Puente Nuevo bridge looks impressive in this rocky scenery:

You can attend the ‘Corrida Goyesca, ‘ a unique and historical bullfight that happens once a year in the Plaza de Toros de Ronda. This is the oldest bullfighting ring in Spain. The partially intact Arab baths can be found below the city and dated back to the 1300 – 1400

In Ronda, you can also visit the Palacio of the Marqués de Salvatierra if you are lucky to find it open to the public. I don’t know why it opens irregularly, and it is a small museum of Renaissance art.

In the end…

I am an amateur photographer, but my fascination with shooting is helping me to progress every day. All the above pictures were done with my previous camera Sony A6000 and 18-200 mm lens and Sony. If you like the quality of the photos and feel interested, you can find the review I wrote for the camera – with pictures in the post – and here the lens review.

I hope you enjoyed my general description of this trip and the places in Andalusia. Please ask in the comment section below if you need more details about something or if you want to add your experience. Thank you for reading my post till the end!