We loved Sevilla so much that we ended up extending our stay there twice, for a total of nearly 2 months. Even though the weather was pretty terrible for the last 3 weeks, it couldn't dampen our enthusiasm for this fantastic city.
During that time we met so many wonderful people, including our amazing Spanish teacher Laura, and lots of other travelling families with kids.
We settled into a great routine with the girls at school during the day, leaving us to explore the city, visit the fresh food markets, and eat some delicious lunches.
With any luck, we'll be back again sometime soon!
We spent the weekend in Cádiz, one of the oldest cities in Europe. It was a cool town, but unfortunately we had pretty lousy weather which made it a bit hard to do much sight-seeing.
Our apartment had a lovely rooftop deck, and we got at least one meal up there before the rains came.
Like everyone else we always upload the highlights to Facebook - so here's the true story containing some of the lowlights of our weekend away to Grazalema...
After a slow start renting the car (including a return trip back to the house to get our passports) we headed off to do the Via Verde de la Sierra, a bike trial along an abandoned railway line. There were 2 options for which way to go - we went the wrong way, and spent an hour cycling in the sun through boring scenery, before realising and heading back in the correct direction, which was lovely.
The Lonely Planet gushed about Arcos de la Frontera and said *you will absolutely love it*, so we drove an hour out of our way to stay there. The town turned out to be OK but nothing special, and that night was the annual town fiesta, so all 20,000 people were out having loud and boisterous fun. This would have been awesome if we were young and carefree, but with kids it was a nightmare as we basically couldn't move through the steep and cobbled streets. Our AirBnB was absolutely freezing, and turning on both heaters at the same time tripped the circuit breaker.
In the end it all worked out OK. The girls were super resilient and we headed back into the mountains near Grazalema the next day, for a really nice hike through the hills. Nelly was such a trooper and walked for 3 hours without a single complaint.
So there you have it, the un-sanitised back story behind the happy photos ;
We decided to slow down the pace of our travels, by spending 2 months in Sevilla. We've been here for a month already, and we are totally in love with this city.
The pace of life is extremely relaxing, and it's so easy to get around on foot, bicycle or tram. The old town is a ramble of narrow, cobbled streets and there are loads of shops and restaurants everywhere.
The only problem is that our girls are still on an Aussie schedule - they wake up too early, and they're hungry and tired at the wrong times for the Spanish lifestyle. We need to train them to sleep in and eat late like the locals.
We've enrolled the girls in a local pre-school so they can practise their Spanish, and meanwhile we're also taking Spanish lessons.
The awesome benefit of travelling with kids is that it's really easy to meet other parents, and we've struck up friendships with other travellers and even some locals, although we have a way to go before we can converse fluently. Bit by bit we're getting there...