Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Hello from beautiful, sunny Segovia!

As you can tell by the title of this post, all did not go as planned today…….

We had carefully planned a bus trip out of town to Avila, a small town about an hours drive from Segovia.  We asked the front desk of our hotel and they very kindly helped us, even providing a printed bus schedule.  We decided we'd take the 10:30 bus to Avila and the 8 PM return, which would give us several hours to explore this wonderful town with it's beautiful walls.

The old city walls of Avila, isn't it amazing?

(photo courtesy of Wikipedia)
We woke pretty early, especially considering our very late evening last night.  We looked out our windows onto the square--it's another gorgeous sunny day, AND it's market day in Segovia!  We quickly got showered and dressed so we'd have time to have a bite of breakfast and cruise the market before we caught a taxi to the bus station.

After a quick breakfast we enjoyed a stroll around the market, admiring the beautiful vegetables and fruit--everything looks so fresh and perfect.

Matt--look what we found!

There were also several clothing stalls--everything from use clothes to fancy new dresses.  I spied  a booth with vintage junque and found a treasure--a very nice old folding ruler.  I bargained hard, and paid a big 3.50 Euros!

It was time to head to the bus station, so we hopped in a taxi for a quick 20 minute ride.  He let us off right in front of the station, and we easily found the ticket office.  Hmmmmm--it doesn’t open until 10:30, how are we going to buy a ticket for the 10:30 bus in time?  We found another window, and asked the lady about the bus to Avila--she was less than helpful, telling us she didn’t know.  We went back around to the ticket window, and patiently (NOT) waited for them to roll up their window.  Finally!  The nice lady explained to us that the bus to Avila had left at 10 AM, and the next bus was at 2 PM!  Our hotel had given us the old winter schedule--not the new spring and summer schedule.  To say we were disappointed would be putting it mildly, but we were determined to salvage the day.

On our taxi right back to our hotel we talked about what we could do for the rest of the day.  We decided we’d go back to the Alcazar, as we had really wanted to climb the big tower yesterday, but it was closed on Tuesdays, but open today.

So off we went--it was a beautiful day for a climb!

As we entered the gates of the Alcazar, we noticed some nesting storks in a tall pine tree.  What gorgeous birds, and they are huge:

Here's the tower we climbed:

It was only 152 steps--not too bad.  The first part was very narrow, winding steps; it was a little cozy if someone needed to pass you coming down.

The last 1/3 was VERY high steps, but I made it to the top without too much huffing and puffing.

The view from the top was great--worth every step.

After a few minutes at the top we trudged back down the steps and moseyed back into town for a well deserved cold beer and a couple of small tapas.

What to do the rest of the afternoon?  David wanted to visit an old Jewish Synagogue that looked quite interesting, so we got out our trusty city map and with a couple of "scenic detours", finally found it.   It was closed-----sheeesh! 

We wandered around for an hour or so, doing a little window shopping, looking at menus for a late lunch.  We even wandered back over to the aqueduct for one last look--it's pretty amazing.

We weren't finding much of interest for a lunch spot, so eventually we settled on our hotel restaurant.  I used my limited and very rusty Spanish skills to translate the menu for David, and we ordered our starters and main dish.  Ahhhhh-reminders of China, another "Lost in Translation" moment!

David's salad came with a little surprise on top--anchovies.  I tried one, David didn't, and he didn't miss much--ick.

My starter: green beans with bacon.  I was expecting a plate of those delicious white beans.  The green beans were very good, but just now what I was expecting:

Next came our main dishes.  What I thought was beef fillet on the menu turned out to be fish fillet (as in feeeeesh fillet as pronounced by our waiter).  It was a firm, very mild white fish with a nice sauce--really quite good, just not what I wanted!

David's main dish was truly a surprise--what we thought was going to be prawns sautéed with vegetables turned out to be scrambled eggs with teeny tiny pieces of shrimp, topped with a few oddly shaped crackers.  We were laughing so much we forgot to take pictures.  I think I need to brush up my Spanish skills, most definitely!

Dessert was OK, although David was surprised by his--chopped up strawberries in a bowl of orange juice.  My rice pudding was fine, though.

But the wine was good!  And the whole experience was good for a laugh, especially the very pretentious service of such mediocre food.  

After that lovely lunch it was siesta time for sure.  We're thinking the Spaniards are on to something with this afternoon siesta break….we could live like this!  At least it wasn't a long walk back to our hotel.

We enjoyed a few hours of down time,  organized and packed our bags, and had a little snooze.  

No dinner to speak of tonight, just a relaxing glass of wine and a few tapas at an outdoor cafe in the Plaza.  The company was perfect, and the view was great.

Tomorrow: Train back to Madrid, then onward to Toledo.  And yes, I've double & triple checked the train times!

Good night from Segovia………..


  1. Sorry your plans did't work out. Eggs with little shrimp? Not so good. Beautiful pictures. Di - you are the only one I know who could find a vintage folding ruler in a flea market in Spain. I'm impressed! Have fun tomorrow.

  2. The view atop the tower was fantastic-not a bad compromise really! Interesting dishes-no spainish rice yet?

  3. I loved the picture of you this blog..

  4. I loved the picture of you this blog..