We are enamored, San Geraldo and I, with the public transportation system we’ve so far experienced here in Southern Spain. We took the train (called RENFE) from Sevilla to Málaga and then hopped on the commuter train (Cercanías) from there to Fuengirola. The commuter train let us off just a few minutes walk from our hotel on the beach.
|BEAUTY ALONG THE LINE.|
The trains and stations are modern, immaculately clean, easy to navigate, punctual (to the minute, in our experience — although we were two minutes late on our return to Sevilla), and well-traveled by locals and tourists. The scenery along the way is breathtaking.
|ANOTHER RENFE TRAIN.|
I saw a flock of wild flamingoes. I think it’s called a “flamboyance.” The train was moving too fast for me to get a photo, so you’ll have to take my word for it. San Geraldo was in the bathroom at the time. Oddly, he was in the bathroom the first time I saw wild flamingos when we were vacationing here two years ago and took the train to Málaga. So, he has to take my word for it, too. But, really, I did see wild flamingos. And they were flamboyant.
|OLIVES, OLIVES, EVERYWHERE.
UNTIL WE GOT CLOSER TO THE SEA. THEN IT WAS CITRUS, CITRUS, EVERYWHERE.
At times there are olive orchards for as far as the eye can see. Young trees. Gnarled, ancient trees. It’s about 2-1/2 hours by train from Sevilla to Málaga. You pass through the Sierra Nevadas and then you begin to see citrus groves. For as far as the eye can see.
|I HAVE NOTHING TO ADD.|
There’s a very famous rock climbing area near the village of El Chorro (which means the stream) about 50 km (31 miles) north of Málaga. The train cuts right through part of it. It’s a massive limestone gorge. The views are magnificent. And the climbs are frightening. You can travel the paths with trained guides; it’s only for skilled trekkers and climbers. There are old wooden “catwalks” and bridges running along the cliff faces. They were in disrepair but funding was set aside for their restoration. I don’t know if any can be used at this time. Even so, you wouldn’t catch me on one. From the train window, I spotted two climbers scaling a vertical wall. San Geraldo was again in the bathroom. We zipped into a tunnel, so you and San Geraldo will, again, just have to take my word for it. I also saw a Unicorn. Trust me.
|CLICK TO TERROR-SIZE
AND SEE THE “CATWALK” RUNNING (CENTER) ALONG THE CLIFF FACE.
|THE STATION AT ALORA.
WHERE TO GET OFF THE TRAIN IF YOU WANT TO RISK LIFE AND LIMB ON THE CLIFFS.
Oddly, along the way we passed the Hotel Manhattan. I think it’s a possible place for climbers and hikers to stay. They don’t have to scale anything, like the Statue of Liberty, to get there.
|THE MANHATTAN SKYLINE?|
|MOLDY MOLDING. TWO-DAYS WORTH. I MAY STOP SCRUBBING AND START MOWING.|
CLICK TO SEE THE VIEW FROM FUENGIROLA.