Visited Gibraltar on 21 February but only now (21 March) able to post this short blog.
We wanted to visit Gibraltar last year but the very hot August weather in 2021 forced us back to the cooler north of Spain.
With the temperature approaching 20 degrees centigrade and the sun shining, February is a much better time to visit Gibraltar. We parked the Van up at one of the two large car parks in La Linea de la Concepcion on the Spanish side of the border and, after getting our passports stamped, walked across the border (and the airport runway) into Gibraltar.
We stayed for lunch and a brief wander and were pleasantly surprised. Covering an area of just 4 square kilometres, Gibraltar isn’t very big but there’s plenty there to keep one busy for a couple of days. So much so that, we intend returning later in the year for a long weekend. An Easyjet fly from Gatwick should do the trick.
Linked to Spain by a narrow isthmus, Gibraltar (the Rock) has a population of more than 30,000 and has been a British Overseas Territory since 1713. The town lies on the west side of the peninsula within a stones throw of Spain and; while there are pubs selling English beer, a Marks & Spencer store, 1960’s style red pillar post boxes and telephone booths (and the shops accept sterling as readily as Euros and their own Gibraltar Pounds); it is not as anglicised as some would have you believe – not during winter, anyway. It has a character all of it’s own.
We started off on Main Street with it’s ‘tax free’ shopping and then wandered the length of Gibraltar to Europa Point before returning via Irish Town and a couple of small but pretty marinas and a beach or two on the west side of the Rock. We paused at Grand Casements Square for lunch and to soak up some of the midday sun.
We missed out on visiting the top of the rock (426 metres high) because Vanya wasn’t keen on walking up there and it is not possible to take large dogs up on the cable car (not that Vanya would ever get in a cable car anyway). A taxi driver offered to drive us to and from some of the more interesting sites and look after our dogs while we properly explored them but we weren’t too comfortable with this idea. We’d have worried about the dogs and rushed through everything. So next time no dogs and, no doubt, we’ll experience some fine views from the top of The Rock and the Windsor Suspension Bridge and the famous ‘Skywalk’. We’ll get a chance too to walk the Mediterranean Steps and some of the Great Siege Tunnels (more than 30 miles of caves and tunnels have been dug into the rock over the years) and visit Saint Michael’s Cave (which is used as a theatre now but was set up as a hospital during WWII). Then there’s the Upper Rock Nature Reserve and the famous bad tempered Barbary Apes, the Alameda Botanical Gardens, the Moorish Castle … Oh yes, there’s plenty to fill at least a long weekend.
And if you need more, there’s much to see in Spain (just a short walk away) or; a day trip to Tangier from nearby Tarifa (with Morocco just 15 miles away across the Gibraltar Straits).
Gibraltar is alright by me!