Flying in to Gibraltar & why we decided to stay in Spain

**ALERT: Long one again!**

Long before we had arranged our first trip to Spain which was around 4 weeks ago, this one had been booked. Mr C actually booked the flights into Gibraltar, and a hotel a long time ago and did it as a surprise for me. Okay, okay, I'm a lucky girl, I know that. He had to tell me beforehand though as I needed to book the time off work. Mr C and I have visited Gibraltar more times than we care to remember, we were always popping there for the cheap booze and cigarettes when we lived in Spain some years ago, err...... the cigarettes were for others but the booze was most definitely for us!!! LOL.

Anyway, we flew out on the day our city and football team celebrated winning the Premier league, did you hear about that? Think they heard our screams down under. We were gutted to be missing the party but happier to be on a plane to sunnier climes. We did a toast to them somewhere over the Bay of Biscay mind.

For those that don't know Mr C and I will have been married for 25 years on 22nd June, what an achievement hey? I've heard all the "you get longer for murder" comments, they're getting boring now. We were planning a big holiday but for various reasons that can't happen this year (next year though) so we're trying to get in a few short breaks, and as I said this was a surprise one! 

Not only was the trip a surprise, there was another little one when we got to Birmingham airport. I was starving and wanted to go to Maccies on the way to the airport for food but Mr C skirted around the subject mumbling something about getting something a bit later. Wasn't long till I found out why. He'd booked us into the No1 lounge that's why! Now I also understood why he wanted to get to the airport even earlier than usual, we could have three hours in there before our departure. Three hours to drink all the complimentary wine, and fill our faces with all the food. ALL the food. 

Just look at all the cake!!! After starter and mains we then had a scone each followed by lots of little cakes. We just had to, don't tell me you wouldn't do the same! All washed down with wine and fizz. I swear I'd put on weight before I'd even left the airport! Yikes.  

I will say here though that we were really excited to be in the No1 lounge, starting our holiday off the right way but my god the staff were so damn miserable looking, not a smile to be seen and hardly any communication. It just wasn't right and really took the edge off. It was very disappointing and an email will be going to them to report my findings!

The flight was one of those really irritating ones where you've got trolly dollies looking as miserable as sin, a tall giant of a guy constantly kneeing me in the back and a group of youngsters in front jumping about with that much excitement I thought at one point they were gonna burst. Thank the Lord we were only sandwiched between them for 2 and half hours. 

We had legs, fingers and toes crossed that the weather would be good for landing, we desperately wanted to see The Rock as we flew in. The big man upstairs answered our prayers and the approach and landing was amazing. We circled The Rock and came in over the sea, I swear if those plane windows opened I would have been able to touch the ocean . 

Just look at the beautiful weather that greeted us. What a result. That leads me on to explaining why we decided NOT to stay in Gibraltar. Sorry if you're getting a bit bored already and want to get on to the pics but this is important. Kind of. When Mr C told me we were going, he showed me the hotel and I was really excited as although we've visited many times, we've never stayed there, that's why he thought it would be nice for something a bit different and there are still lots of things we've not done in Gib. BUT, after talking it over, the realisation hit that the weather is so unpredictable in Gibraltar, it's often like the shitty weather we get in the UK, so we thought we'd be better off crossing the border into Spain, hiring a car and driving off to find the sun. So that's exactly what we did. 

Clearing customs, crossing the border on foot and getting to the car hire place over the road took all of 15 minutes if that, and the whole process of sorting out the car and finding it in the car park went so smoothly, a lot quicker than when we've picked up hire cars at Malaga airport that's for sure. 

We sped off to our destination with our sunnies on and Radio Planeta (our favourite Spanish station) blaring out. We were home baby. 

We arrived at our Apartment, Ona Campanario in the resort of Calahonda around 9pm to find we had been upgraded! Oh yeah, that put a smile on my face after the nightmare flight and my now chronic backache! I guess the chap couldn't help it, shouldn't have such long bloody legs though.  I'll do a separate post about our accommodation for you folks, I always think it a good idea in case anyone is after somewhere to stay in the area. 

We chose apartments over a hotel this time so we could stock the fridge with wine and all kinds of goodies. If you follow me on snapchat (stephaniec41) you'll have seen that doing my makeup on the patio of an evening went hand in hand with wine and chocolate! You can achieve the perfect contour lines when sucking on chocolate. Anyone else found that? 

Ahhhhhh.......another holiday, another load of time spent lounging like lizards by the pool, and our poolbar waiter insisting we drink as much sangria as we possibly could. I didn't argue as it contains plenty of your 5-a-day.  Ok so the alcohol drowns out the good work of the fruit but I'm not sorry.

Lazy beach bum days too with this gorgeous hunk of a man. 

Having a car made this holiday. We went out and about most days visiting old haunts and going down memory lane, where we had so many special times with family and friends. Special times that we will always treasure. We'd try and head out in the morning so that we could then spend the rest of the afternoon filling up on our 5-a-day. 

We went up into the hills to Mijas to see the donkeys. Mijas is a very traditional village nestled in the mountains with quaint cobbled streets, one of the oldest bullrings and spectacular views over the Costa. I think I might put a post together with a few things to do on the Costa del Sol so I'll put more about Mijas in there. 

The beautiful church at the very top of the village.

See what I mean about the views?

Not one of your 5-a-day but ice cream is a tourist essential. You have to have 5 of them a day.

This day we did Mijas for a couple of hours then went to Marbs. Or Marbella as the posh like to call it. 

Marbella is lovely, and has something for everyone but personally we love old town Marbs, especially Plaza de los Naranjos, Orange Square if you're not up on your Spanish.

On our last night we booked a table at a restaurant we'd been to before, Max beach. Right on the sea front, quite posh, where we toasted (the first of many to come) our 25 years of marriage.

After the meal we drove back to the apartment, did a quick outfit change, into something more casual for a stroll down the strip in search of cocktails. We found some new shady looking friends and rather delicious beverages.

Always the same, never content with his own (Long island iced tea BTW) greedy guts just had to have some of mine.

We decided that we would drive down to Gibraltar early on our last day and spend the day there. I wanted to go up to the top of The Rock (again) with my new camera and get some fab pictures of the apes, but sadly it was not to be, the good old British style-y weather had swept in, covered The Rock in the thickest mist and the cable cars were closed. Bummer.

So what do you do in Gibraltar when that happens? You shop of course. My favourite pastime. With Gib being VAT free you can get some great bargains, with the best being perfume, jewellery, electronics, spirits and tobacco. Mr C bought me not one but two bottles of Jo Malone perfume, I was truly spoilt in so many ways on this trip.

After shopping we decided to drown our rock sorrows in a cider and a pint of beer, with afters of häagen-Dazs. We then felt much better, ha ha.

And guess what? The sun made an appearance as it was getting near us having to make tracks to the airport.

We had THE best time in Calahonda, catching up with old friends and soaking up the sunshine. 

We're already hankering to go back. 

Have you visited Southern Spain? 



  1. Amazing post! I love your blog and I'll be happy if we start to follow each other!


  2. I love having a nosy at holiday photos! What a beautiful place, and I adore your outfits - you have some gorgeous clothes. Glad you had an amazing time and got to capture the moments with some fabulous photos xx


    1. What a lovely comment. Thanks so much Kathryn x

  3. We have been to Benahavis for the past 3 years, which is in this part of Spain. It's such a lovely place. Congrats on 25 years x

    1. It's beautiful isn't Jemma, thats why we keep going back year after year. xx


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