Because Ronda is so close to Gibraltar we decided it was a must do, and we are so glad we did. It was easy to get to from Ronda-it was under two hours and parking near the airport was a breeze. We needed to be close to the airport because we wanted to walk from Spain to Gibraltar. The best thing about walking is that you cross the airport runway to do it – great fun for two guys who love planes! Frances and I enjoyed the walk too, even though when we arrived low cloud hovered over the Rock and kept the upper part from view.
Arrival into Gibraltar was easy. We flashed our passports and off we went, walking into the town via a tunnel which opens onto a square full of cafes and fish and chip shops. After a quick coffee stop and a very good piece of carrot cake, we found a taxi van which could take us up the Rock as far as visitors are allowed to go, with stops for photos, to view Africa across the Straits (but sadly not on this day because of the cloud), to see the caves and Castle, and to mix it up with the Barbary Apes.
The caves, which are set up for concerts, are fabulous, especially with the effects the multi-coloured lights crea worried about the apes, as they do nip, and apparently the babies are prone to leaping at you, but for our visit they behaved themselves. Interestingly, mothers and babies are named and tagged, and they are all vaccinated. Four troops live in completely separately on the rock and about 25 babies are born annually.
We were taken up the Rock by one Ronnie, a native, with a great grasp of the history, albeit delivered in quite a strong accent. The cable car looks amazing -but not for us, so Ronnie met our needs perfectly, stopping to let us take photos and to give us the history spiel as we went.
On arriving back at the square, we attacked some of Roy’s Fish and Chips – huge and rather oily, so not our best meal, but we had to do it as were in a square serving British style food. In fact, British history pervades the place and you can see why it is so strategically important to Britain.
The return walk back across to Spain was easy again, no bureaucracy and the shine was shining on the Rock. It was totally the right decision to go, and we can all say we have done something really special. The whole experience so worthwhile and almost surreal.
After resting up on our return, we did a little more exploring in Ronda, met for drinks in the lovely hotel bar and had a somewhat mediocre meal in a covered alleyway nearby. Phil and I felt the need to get the most out of Ronda that we could, so we strolled around the city wall in the twilight. A perfect ending to a perfect stay.