Living With Our Rapido 963f Le Randonneur Motor Home.

Friday, 9 October 2015

Cabo de Gata-Nijar Park Natural.

The area we are in, around 15 miles East of the City of Almeria, on the Mediterranean coast is the only designated area of desert in Western Europe. With it's year round warm climate and little annual rainfall, the look of the area is bare scrubland from the surrounding mountains to the sea. It is also the world's largest grower and exporter of tomatoes, which means there are acres and acres of greenhouses within the rural setting. This contributes to the area being a bit like Marmite - you either love it or hate it. We love it.




If you look beyond first impressions, the area is one of natural beauty, offering much interesting wildlife to look at such as pink flamingos wading in the salinas, wild boar, snakes and scorpions in the desert, and some of Spain's best beaches that are usually deserted, and have not yet been found by the average tourist. There are also many interesting movie locations to view, laid out in a "movie trail". Due to the extreme scenery films such as Patton, Lawrence of Arabia, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and many others were shot on location here. The San Antonio, Texas Mission scenes from the Clint Eastwood movie "A Fist Full Of Dollars" were shot just up the road, and the old building used as the mission is still there to see on a corrugated dirt track about 10km into the mountains.


Today, another hot one, we chose the early morning and walked a circular route through the desert towards the sea. The beach here is difficult to access by vehicle and so is little used. It is chosen by naturists as their own ideal location. There are other more popular beaches a mile away at Cabo de Gata village, or Retamar 7 miles in the other direction. Other spectacular unspoilt and secluded beaches can be found a few miles up the road near to San Jose at Monsul and Genoveses, again favourites of the naturist community. During the summer months there is a public bus service to these two beaches, as they too are very much off the beaten track.












The circular walk we have just completed, through the desert to the beach and back to the site is around two miles. Being totally flat makes it easy, and walking can be done on tracks rather than through scrub, but like we did, probably best done early morning or late afternoon, as once again the temperature here at 11.30am is already around 30 degrees.

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