Tuesday, August 05, 2008

May 7th, 2008 - Almansa and Chinchilla

From the Mediterranean coast we headed inland pronto - a little Spanish language there - to escape the frantic lifestyle of the claustrophobic Costas. There are only 1200 campsites in the whole of Spain and we were to learn that straying from the usual tourist tracks into the inland plains and mountains meant respecting this reality. This became apparent on the first night away from the coast.
After a relaxed drive into the hinterland we stopped for a while in Almansa,
a small city built around the Castillo de Almansa, which was originally a key Islamic military enclave built to reinforce the northern frontier of Arab Spain. For more snaps around town, click here.
This area of Spain is known as Castille la Mancha, so called for the abundance of castles, and our objective after leaving Almansa was the town of Chinchilla de Monte Aragón. Located on a hill that overlooks the plains of La Mancha, the town of Chinchilla has a 15th century castle and a medieval historic quarter. With no campsite to be found, we overnighted in the parking lot of a truckers motel, nestled between numerous huge trucks. The following day, the weather caught up with us with steady rain that looked set for the day. Here is "the" picture we took before departing.

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