Book your hire car with Gomarbella & Spain now and Then

Saturday, 13 September 2008

Fourteen hours from Bordeaux

By now you'll know that stopping along the way is very much part of my travelling. Overtaking a convoy of highsided trucks I missed a road sign and found myself off the AP1 north of Madrid heading for Miranda del Ebro. Listening in to the chat between the women petrol station assistants where I stopped to get directions, you would wonder if there is equal opportunity employment in the province of Burgos.

Some hours later swinging south off the busy, bumpy, concrete surfaced stretch of the A4 linking Madrid with Cordoba I stopped at the first BP station to refuel and have a coffee. The late afternoon light warmed the forecourt and pumping Latin music flooded the shop, the cafeteria and even the loos. I thanked the young cashier for her warm welcome and the music and was rewarded with an even brighter smile. It felt good to be back in Andalucia.

My journey yesterday started at the Gare St Jean railway station in Bordeaux. After seeing my wife off on the early morning 5.35 TGV to Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris I walked back to the hotel, checked out and was gone by 6.50. Heavy rain fell all the way down into the Basque country and it was 10am before I could switch my wipers and lights off. Whereas the French drivers scrupulously observed the speed limits, back in Spain, at 130kmh I was one of the slowest cars on the road in the 4.30pm Friday afternoon rush by Madrid drivers to escape south from the capital for the weekend.

The Autovia de la Sierra Nevada heading down towards Granada bordered by olive trees on rolling slopes always gives my spirits a lift. Around 6pm I stopped at the venta which you see in the picture above and checking an sms from my daughter in Germany I learned that my wife's flight to Boston had arrived on time and that the plane was already at the arrival gate in Boston.

Dodging the Costa del Sol cinema going cowboys at the exit roundabout from La Cañada in Marbella as I came off the A7 was the most severe test of my driving skills over the last two weeks of driving in Europe but by 9.30 pm I was safely back home.


Anonymous said...

hi ,
Is there a taxi rank outside the hospital costa del sol.

Many thanks


Mike Drury said...

Hi Ben

Thanks for writing in to gomarbella.

Yes there are actually three taxi ranks outside the hospital. One outside Urgencias on the mountains side of the hospital, one in front of the main entrance where visitors go in to the wards and the third taxi rank is in front of the outpatients entrance, nearest to the main road, the A7 or CN 340.

I have just phoned Taxisol the local taxi company to confirm this. They are very good about giving information. Their number is 00 34 95 277 44 88

I hope this helps, let me know if you need any more information about the hospital.

Best wishes


Kay Othman said...

Hi Mike. Yr blog is very informative! How best should i move around in Andalucia? I will be in Estepona and i plan to visit Tangier,Cadiz and white houses, Cordoba, Granada, Malaga. When should i use my rented car, buses, or train? Thank you very much.

Mike Drury said...

Hi Kay

Looks like a great Andalusian adventure coming up! Without knowing when you are coming and for how long based on what you have said I suggest that you:

Use your hire car for your visit to Tangier, leave it in Tarifa or Algeciras port depending where you sail from. Use it also to visit Cadiz. Don't miss out Tarifa.

Visit Malaga by bus from Estepona.

Visit Cordoba and Granada with organised excursions, I can give you details of how to book those excursions separately.


Visit the two cities in your hire car but you will need a GPS system especially for Granada. Cordoba is a very easy city to get to and to drive around in but the Granada city road system is more complicated.

When are you planning to come Kay? Thanks very much for writing in.

Best wishes from Marbella