Another Spanish Hidden Gem – Albaraccin. The Most Beautiful Village in Spain?

We enjoyed a wonderful stopover in Albarracin and would highly recommend a visit to those touring Spain. Possible if you’re heading north either towards France (via Somport Tunnel) or to either of the ferry ports.

Sometimes, when you have no idea where to go next, the ACSI book supplies a corker!

When unsure where exactly to head we decide on a general direction and roughly how far we want to travel – then we simply get the ACSI book out and see what’s available!  (This doesn’t always work of course.  At which point we get out the ‘Motorhome Stopover’ book and/or defer to the internet).

On this occasion though we knew that we were heading for the Somport Tunnel as our way out of Spain (as we were towing the little car we were avoiding Northern Spain), so we were to head in the direction of Zaragoza – further away from Valencia than you would think!

We were originally considering the town of Teruel but on checking the ACSI map saw a site a little further on at a place called Albaraccin.  A quick check online confirmed that this could be a nice place so the satnav was set accordingly.  The A23 (non-toll) took us most of the way before we headed off onto the 234 just after Teruel, and finally onto the road running into Albaraccin.  This is where we really started to get a feel for where we were heading as the scenery was stunning as we headed through gorges and past ruins high up on the hills.

(This YouTube video from ‘Spain Speaks‘ gives a fair idea of what we experienced – but remember we are sat up higher in the motorhome.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?reload=9&v=MtIlBbAtbD0 )

Camping Ciudad de Albaraccin is located on the outskirts in the ‘new’ part of town.  By going this way you also understand that there is more to this region than just the beautiful old town (cave paintings/bouldering/walking/dinosaurs…)

Once parked up (with amazing views of the old fortification walls forming a spine on the mountain) we set off to explore immediately (we were only staying overnight).

The old town beckoned.  With little time we took the little car and headed back out to park in the big car park we’d seen as we took our first left towards the campsite.  Even this was pretty with a little stream running alongside.

Wandering through the lower part of town we found a couple more carparks (possible for motorhomes perhaps to park –  not sure about overnighting though) before starting on the long climb up to the main old town.  One thing we didn’t manage to find though, on a warm Tuesday afternoon near the beginning of March, was a cafe!

No matter, what we did find more than made up for the lack of a beverage 🙂

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After finding the Torre Blanca (sadly closed for visits) and the stunning scenery surrounding it we made our way towards the castle, the el Salvador cathedral and, eventually after a wander around the narrow, steep, winding cobbled streets – at times together, at times separated by my desire to explore a little set of steps or a covered alley, we found the Plaza Mayor (from where the main picture was taken).  On my circuitous route to this spot I also found the base of the wall snaking it’s way up the mountain.  Although there were 3 lads clambering up towards the wall itself it was definitely way beyond my capabilities!

Entering the Plaza Mayor is shown in the following video which will, hopefully, also give you an idea of what to expect from Albaraccin. Continue reading “Another Spanish Hidden Gem – Albaraccin. The Most Beautiful Village in Spain?”

Campsite Reviews aimed at motorhomers.

Honest 1st hand campsite reviews from the perspective of motorhomers with a fairly large unit (and often towing a small car). Currently covers sites in the UK, Spain, France and Portugal – hopefully in the future we will be adding sites in Germany, Italy, Croatia, Austria, Switzerland and beyond!

Hi to all you motorhomers out there (and caravaners, but being motorhomers ourselves we know what they need :); well we know what we want/need and suspect many will have similar wants)…

We have, so far, visited sites throughout Spain, France and the UK.  This spring/summer, coronovirus allowing, we are hoping to add Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Austria, Germany and Belgium to that list (and perhaps Switzerland, Lichenstein and Luxembourg…)

Within each review will be contact details, location details (ie. GPS co-ordinates), access issues and anything that’s particularly good or bad about the site.  We will also include links to blogs giving you ideas of where to visit during your stay (this might be on foot, by car or bike).

Every site for which there is a review has been visited by us.  Many of them have been found via the ACSI card book, but we are now starting to branch out and there are reviews for the free overnight stops that we have found (some of them just amazing and not limited to 1 night – Algodonales springs to mind; we stayed 4 nights with electricity provided…)

Knowing what’s important to us we are going to use a set format to complete, with key questions (access, pitch, facilities etc.) + the description set up under ‘The good, The bad and The ugly’.

Please do comment with your own views of any campsites I review that you have also visited – it’s quite possible we’ll have differing views!  Any suggestions for other campsites or parking areas are also very welcome 🙂

Just a bit of background information on our set-up then:-

We are Mandi and Calvin and we have a 2012 Bessacarr E769, 8.56m long and 2.3m wide.  We have been using the ACSI book for our travels on our last 2 European trips, and have found it invaluable (although we have had to resort to the internet a couple of times).

We have also invested in an Aguri SatNav for this trip (the one we had previously, from a different manufacturer, proved to be completely useless!!)

And, of course, if you find the campsite reviews helpful you might enjoy our blog cataloguing our travels!

I will be adding to these whenever we travel 🙂

Happy travelling 🙂

Jump straight to relevant reviews below – separate pages created for each country – simply click below for relevant list (most recent trip is shown first):-

SPAIN

FRANCE

UK

 

 

My France and Spain winter 2018/2019 trip

Follow me on my trip ‘France and Spain winter 2018/2019’ at https://www.polarsteps.com/turnrightoutofportsmouth/990685-france-and-spain-winter-2018-2019

Starting to prepare and get excited for our next trip. This will be recorded as we move on Polarsteps so if you follow us you won’t need to wait until I get round you writing up my blog to see where we are 😊

See also our reviews for each site we stopped at on the way.

Today’s the Day! :)

The final run-up to the off 🙂

20170116_072839Countdown to the Off!!

And we’re off!  (Literally, right now, as this posts…)  Okay, so I’ve cheated with this particular blog (in that I’m actually writing it a week before we leave and updating whenever I have a few minutes!)

I’m finding that I have some wonderful ideas for what to write – just as I’m falling asleep each night..!

To be honest we are almost ready now.  The house is almost completely packed up ready for moving into storage at the weekend, we have piles put aside to move into the van, 1 last wash to do and 2 loads of ironing (I know, this is almost too much excitement for you all – me too).

Had a little panic yesterday when I found out that I was meant to have got an independent valuation on the property (even though it’s sold through the proper channels).  I managed to get this organised quickly though (thank goodness for the January lull), the visit has been made and we’re just waiting for the report.  Phew phew-941

I’ve just got a few more letters to write to leave for Sam to fill in the completion date and pop in the post and then we’re good to go.

We’re even doing well with running down the fridge/freezer and cupboards contents 🙂

So I’ve been on a bit of a rollercoaster of emotions so far this year.  You know that feeling you had through most of your teenage years (I know some of you are still there; lucky you! but for many of us this is 30+ years ago!).  Continue reading “Today’s the Day! :)”

It’s beginning to feel real now…:)

I’ve now begun my final month at work (my last day is 2nd December), and the fact that I’m about to take a year off is becoming very real.  Actually it’s 13 months due to my work pattern for the last few months.- so I have plenty of time to prepare.

So now we’re starting to get ready.  The ferry tickets to Spain are booked and paid for – we leave on 18th January.  Continue reading “It’s beginning to feel real now…:)”