A trip to Gran Canaria

I have just returned from one of the best holidays i’ve ever been on. Rai and I packed our one suitcase (damn RyanAir and their insane baggage fees…) and headed off just over a week ago to the Canary Island, a place we knew could guarantee gorgeous weather mid-September.

The holiday was a perfect mix of relaxing, exploring, drinking and eating. We stayed in an apartment in a wonderful hotel in the centre of Playa Del Ingles. Before we took the trip we were a little worried about the location we’d chosen; the logic behind it was that we wanted the place to still be busy and vibrant enough to keep us entertained off-season, but the week before we flew out we heard some pretty sketchy stuff and worried we’d accidentally booked a holiday to some sort of party place for 18 year olds to get wrecked without parental supervision. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case.  

Playa Del Ingles itself was ok. It’s a typical resort town designed to entertain tourists year-round. It has hundreds of restaurants and bars, varying in style and quality. As seasoned TripAdviser users, Rai and I managed to almost completely avoid bad food and found some of the best restaurants we’ve ever eaten in. Wapa Tapa was our favourite place; it has a diverse menu full of Spanish foods to sample served as tapas. It was nothing short of utterly delicious. In terms of bars, we saw a hilarious drag show and found a great Norwegian bar with a pool table that one night resulted in us getting drunk with a group of Norwegians old enough to be our parents who could drink us under the table. We had a lot of fun. Rai golfingIMG_0432The most incredible thing about Playa Del Ingles is without doubt the sand dunes. One morning Rai and I walked through them and were taken aback by their beauty. It was also a great spontaneous work-out; trekking up and down dunes in the scorching sun was really, really hard work! My inner amateur photographer came out in a big way and I managed to take a photo that looks a lot like it could be a Windows 98 desktop background.

Dunes background
My photography or Windows 98 desktop?

 

Rai dunesPossibly the most memorable part of the holiday was hiring a car and driving across the island through the mountains. The views are incredible; the mountains climb miles into the sky and the rocky surroundings with naturally growing cacti make for a stunning backdrop. Driving the route was so much fun; being London-dwellers, Rai and I don’t have a car, but we both enjoy driving when we get the chance. We took turns taking on the treacherous paths where sheer drops awaited at every corner and there was barely room for two cars to pass one another. It was reminiscent of a Top Gear challenge and I loved every moment.

Rai and I mountainsMountainsThe trip was incredible and exactly what the doctor ordered after a solid year of work. I’m not unhappy to be back in London, I feel rested and ready for whatever challenges await over the next few months. It has however made me remember the importance of travel. After university I chose to go straight into work and do the whole “city thing”, but that doesn’t mean I don’t intend to travel the world someday. Rai and I have spoken loosely about taking a few months to a year off in a couple of years time, but living in London means saving will be tough. I suppose the holiday served as an excellent reminder that there is more to life than having a successful career and making lots of money, and actually sometimes just taking in natures incredible beauty is enough light a fire inside you.

me Dunes
Have you ever seen a more awkward person pose for a photo? Me neither.

 

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