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Waking up the next morning to blue skies is always an amazing feeling, even better when you know you have a full day at the beach to look forward to.
Kite-surfing was on the agenda whilst we were in Tarifa and we had our first lesson this morning (Tarifa is known for it’s high-winds so is popular with the kite-surfing and wind-surfing crowds). Heading to Paloma Beach for the best wind that day we were greeted by this sight!
Now I’m a complete beginner at kite-surfing but my boyfriend has done it before so our instructor spent most of the time with me trying to get me up to speed. The wind wasn’t fantastically strong but because the first lesson is all done on land it was just about enough to start to learn kite control. It seemed like there was a lot to learn with harnesses, lines and how to move the kite in the right way but after about an hour of playing around with it I finally managed to work out what I was doing and even managed to get a bit of air (being dragged along by the pull of the kite). Dan managed to get a bit of water time but I thought I’d save that until the next day.
After 3 hours of playing with kites we were both absolutely ravenous and decided to head to a restaurant I’d read about on the internet called El Mirlo which was supposed have fabulous seafood and amazing views. Well it didn’t disappoint…
Lunch was a starter of grilled prawns to share followed by the fish of the day which was bream, charcoal grilled served with potatoes, roasted vegetables and a garlic oil. After handing the potatoes over to Dan I tucked in and it was what I had been dreaming about for weeks. Perfectly cooked moist fish with a slightly salty skin, the vegetables were delicious but the star or the show was the garlic oil! I’d drink that stuff if I could. I’m a bit of a garlic monster and it was the most garlicky sauce I’ve ever tasted – not sure how they made it (probably should’ve asked that) but I’d come back to the restaurant just to try it again. We decided to drink a bottle of local Albarino which was cool, crisp and fruity – but yep, you guessed it, i forgot to photograph the bottle! With the bill coming to 40 euros a head we were hugely surprised – thinking we were going to get ripped off for ordering the fish (Market price usually means double for tourists) and we forgot to ask an approximate price before ordering as we were so hungry. Not a cheap lunch but definitely value for money due to the amazing food, wine and the view! I’ve never sat having lunch in one continent looking out at another!
Bellies full it was time to head back to the beach, we found a tiny path down the hill which brought us out onto the most gorgeous secluded beach, sheltered from the wind and with hardly anyone around. It was paradise and we snoozed in the sun and played cards until the sun started to go down.
After changing for dinner we headed back out into Tarifa Old Town and headed to a tiny tapas bar for a quick aperitif – Sangria for me and a Caña (small beer) for him. We weren’t hungry in the slightest but the Jamon Iberia looked too tempting to resist so we shared a small plate with our drinks.
Apart from a weekend away, for our birthdays, Dan and I each organise a special dinner out while we’re there and I booked La Casona, a tapas bar that came highly recommended on Trip Advisor. It was a more modern tapas bar than some of the others around town but the menu looked pretty authentic. We ordered the Gambas Al Ajillo and the Sesame Crusted Tuna Tartare to start (again, no pics). The tuna was delicious and the prawns were good, but I’ve had better. Mains were locally sourced steaks which tasted charred and smoky on the outside and were well cooked but I just felt something was lacking, in all it was a pretty good meal but probably the worst of all the ones that we had while we were in Spain. The wine however was the best bottle I had the whole trip.
Encasta Ronda – a Spanish Cabernet Sauvignon which was heavy, robust and full character (excuse the blurry pic – I wasn’t the photographer).
We finished up with a whisky – they had one of Dan’s favourite’s behind the bar – and it was definitely Spanish measures. On asking for the bill they sent it over with another complimentary whisky each…definitely not a good idea when you have an early morning kite-surfing lesson to get to but we were having too much fun to care by that point.