Issuu on Google+

TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 1

TA R I FA

INSIDE OUT AND ROUND ABOUT

By an insider Zoë Ouwehand- Reid


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 2

Copyright: 2009 Author: ZoĂŤ Ouwehand-Reid who asserts the right to be identified as the writer of this work. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the author. Printed in Spain by Grafisur S.L. Deposito legal: CA 222-2009 ISBN: ES 978-84-934263-9-2 Websites and telephone numbers given in this book were correct at the time the book went to press. All recommendations are those of the author, completely at her own discretion, and no guarantee can be given that standards remain the same over the years as owners/managers/chefs/road numbers/roundabouts etc. can change. Views of the fantastic countryside will not change and if the views from the roof terraces change, the change will be marginal. Tarifa and round about, and Morocco, are a photographer's dream. All the photos are my own amateur photos which I have had intense pleasure in taking.


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 3


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 4


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 5

By an insider, with an autobiographical slant for which I make no apology! This is the book I personally would have liked to find when we first came to Tarifa twelve years ago. I didn't find it, so I decided to write it, hoping it will help others to optimize their time and their lives in this wonderful part of Europe with a great climate - wind included! There may be some repetition (the storks come back to the same nest every year!) - this is intentional, in case you only wish to look at one section. Any other repetitions only reflect my enthusiasm! Note: ‘chiringuito’ is a beach bar!


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 6


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 7

Introduction This book came into being when I realized just how much the visitors to my DAR CILLA GUEST HOUSE in TARIFA appreciated all the information - and more especially my own opinions and recommendations - in the Welcome Folder in each apartment. Many guests suggested I put it into book form. I would stress immediately that it is not a guide, that all opinions and recommendations are entirely my own, and that I certainly stand to be corrected on any factual information, although I have done my best to be as accurate and up-to-date as possible. My book is geared to those travellers who want to do more than just surf and sunbathe. The common denominator of the travellers I have in mind is their eye for beauty (also in the seemingly ugly), for line and for colour; their interest in 'things local'; their joy of discovery and their appreciation of the (deceptively) simple things in life. My aim is to help the curious, the culture vulture, the bird watchers (lots of vultures), the picnic and the nature lovers to optimize their holiday in this area of extraordinary beauty. The scenery in the mountains is breathtaking, the famous black pigs lie prostrate across your path, flowers abound (always of course depending on the season). You can't find better beaches anywhere round Europe ‌ kilometres of fine, golden sand, dramatic rock formations, excellent swimming. Enjoy long morning walks when you seldom meet anyone other than the local fisherman, or sit on the dunes at the end of the day watching the magnificent sunset - it's magical. I understand there is a lively disco scene, but both surfing and discos I leave to the younger generation to document! To my surprise there are many residents (locals and expatriates) who are unaware of the some of the charms ANDALUCIA has to offer beside the well-known and splendid cities of Granada, Cordoba, Sevilla and Ronda. Firstly, I want to introduce you to TARIFA ITSELF. Then I would like to make suggestions for trips that you can do in half a day or a day, starting from and returning to Tarifa. Thereafter I want to take you somewhat further afield, but always with Tarifa as your 'base camp' from which to plan further. MOROCCO I wake up every morning and look across the Strait of Gibraltar to Morocco - which I love - so could not resist adding a seperate section on this country just to whet your appetite! Finally there is an extensive section on restaurants (good food plays a big part in any holiday!) and a list of my personal favourite places to stay. Thus the title of my book, TARIFA INSIDE OUT AND ROUND ABOUT.


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 8

CONTENTS INSIDE TARIFA A brief history of Tarifa Answers to the most frequently asked questions Prevailing winds Your first day in Tarifa Things to do in and near Tarifa

12 12 16 19 20

OUTSIDE TARIFA WESTWARDS Roman ruins Baelo Claudia - Bolonia An easy beach walk.. A great walk - Bolonia An idyllic early evening drive A drive with a 'touch of adventure' with the children A short, pleasant and easy drive Visit the white village of Vejer de la Frontera

27 28 30 30 32 34 35

EASTWARDS Aguapark Algeciras 'Bahia Park' Gibraltar

37 38

ROUND ABOUT WESTWARDS Montenmedio Golf + ‘much more’ (also for non-golfers) Benalup Golf & Country Club and restaurant (also for non-golfers) Benalup - A hotel/restaurant with a difference Medina Sidonia El Palomar de la Breña A day in Cadiz A 2-day-2-night-visit to Cadiz

40 41 42 44 45 46 48

EASTWARDS Castillo de Castellar

49


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:23

Pagina 9

FURTHER AFIELD WESTWARDS Yeguada de la Cartuja - Stud Farm Royal Riding School Jerez A day at the Feria in Jerez - AN ABSOLUTE MUST! Jerez de la Frontera - Hammam Do単ana National Park

53 54 55 56 57

EASTWARDS Genalguacil - An artists' village Alto Genal Valley Do something different - take the train then walk! Great drive and visit to Ubrique

59 61 64 66

MOROCCO Tangier A brief history of Tangier My opinion of Tangier A day trip to Tangier Tangier and Asilah Your day in Tangier Places to stay in Tangier

69 69 70 72 72 73 74

Asilah Chefchaouen: two days, one night A digression! Marrakech

76 79 81

MY PERSONAL RECOMMENDATIONS FOR RESTAURANTS MY PERSONAL RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PLACES TO STAY MY PERSONAL RECOMMENDATION FOR AN IDEAL ITINERARY

82 98 100

ADDENDUM A Family affair Econo-Heat Dar Cilla Guest-house Dar Asni Acknowledgements

103 104 106 108 110


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:24

Pagina 10


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:24

Pagina 11

Tarifa Inside Out and Round About

INSIDE

A small, still authentic Spanish town with a labyrinth of narrow white streets, a colourful, working fishing harbour, a castle, a market on Tuesdays, more and more small boutiques now attracting not only the surfers but the more sophisticated from further afield, restaurants, cafĂŠs and bars galore, and a nightlife. The ferry for Tangier leaves several times daily from the harbour (35 minutes across). The view across the busy shipping strait to Africa is fabulous: "I feel I could spit my olive stone right across to Morocco" one of my guests was heard to say! Tarifa has something for everyone.

11


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:24

Pagina 26

Tarifa Inside Out and Round About

OUTSIDE

Westwards we take you as far as Vejer de la Frontera which is an easy half day excursion. Eastwards we take you to Algeciras which is the nearest larger town with a great 'fruit and veg.' market daily and a worthwhile general-and-clothes market on Tuesdays. Gibraltar is usually a 'must' for English visitors given its history. All are easy half-day excursions.

26


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:24

Pagina 32

area. Service, once the crowds have gone, again becomes more friendly. An equally delightful alternative is Punta Sur (tel. 956 68 43 26) especially in the summer with the candlelit tables outside in the exotic gardens and excellent service, but to date they do not remain open in the winter, so check this. ENJOY THIS EASY BUT SPECTACULAR DRIVE. NOTE FOR MOUNTAIN BIKERS - This is a splendid route for mountain bikers, a well if roughly surfaced road, bends galore, uphill and downhill, and midway a waterfall (where it is clearly marked swimming forbidden, but you could refill your water bottles and throw water over yourselves to cool off!).

A drive with a 'touch of adventure' with the children N.B.: for this drive you will need a 4 x 4! This could be a good alternative when there is a strong Levante wind and it is impossible to be on the beach with children. 32


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:24

Pagina 39

Tarifa Inside Out and Round About

ROUND ABOUT All the recommended excursions take a full day - but are really worth it! Going Westwards I take you as far as Cadiz and Medina Sidonia. The fields are ablaze with sunflowers from end May into June. Eastwards, I hope you will visit Castellar de la Frontera (another former 'frontier' town established by the Moors), a unique small white village perched on a hilltop with its castle (currently being converted into a Parador i.e. a stateowned hotel). It is less 'hippy' than it used to be!

39


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:25

Pagina 40

WESTWARD Montenmedio - much more than just a great golf course ‌.

Montenmedio is sheer delight - for good or average golfers, for beginners and also for non-golfers. Firstly, the setting! It is situated on a countrified stretch of the N.340 at sign km. 43 (a lovely 35 minute drive from Tarifa) just before the beautiful hilltop village of Vejer de la Frontera which you later see rising up ahead of you as you tee off for hole No.1. From holes 14, 15 and 16 you have the coastline and Morocco as a backdrop. How more exotic can it get? However, the main joy in these days is that the course is not -like so many other courses on the Costa del Sol- encroached on by villas. From the moment you pass between the stately white gates you are in 300 acres of unadulterated country with only occasional works of modern art dotting the scenery. The club house (this is somewhat of a misnomer as Montenmedio is a privately owned golf course with a pay and play procedure, but has no 'club' as such) is located in a super-elegant Spanish finca and houses the booking centre, a well stocked shop and an elegant bar and restaurant. The menu is adequate if not exciting but the setting would make the most simple salad taste delicious! For the non golfers there is a beautiful swimming pool (quite pricey!). It is an 18 hole golf course. Seldom do you have players directly in front of -or behind- you. However, check before going 40


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:25

Pagina 52

Tarifa Inside Out and Round About

FURTHER AFIELD I take you as far Eastwards as Cartajima (South of Ronda) and as far Westwards as the Do単ana National Park. Most of these excursions you can also do in a (long) day (such as Jerez , and even Genalguacil and Ubrique) but I personally would recommend you incorporate them into your travel programme on your way to or from Tarifa, staying a night or two. There are so many places to stop en route, such great views ('miradors' = easy stopping places to admire the view) and picnic spots. I do not include Sevilla or Ronda as these are in absolutely every guide book. However, I do thoroughly recommend a two night stay in the little white village of Cartajima from which you can easily visit Ronda. You would be highly unlikely to find the excellent restaurants I recommend without a 'pointer'!

52


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:25

Pagina 53

WESTWARDS Yeguada de la Cartuja - Stud Farm Visits on SATURDAYS ONLY - arrive around 10.40 hrs. Welcoming reception: 11.00 hrs. Reduction for under 12 and over 65 yrs. (ask for a ticket in Group C from which you get much the best view, avoid Group E). Note: prices are liable to increase per year. It is easier to park, less publicized, and therefore much less crowded than the show of the Dancing Horses in Jerez. To get there: take the N.340 direction Cadiz. After Vejer on your left, take the turning right to Medina Sidonia. At the roundabout follow the sign Paterna direction Jerez. Follow the motorway until you come to a T-junction. Keep on following direction Jerez. When nearing Jerez you will see a cement factory -HOLCIM- on your left. Before this there is an exit on your right, taking you over the bridge over the main road, up past the cement factory, and the entrance to the Yeguada de la Cortuja is clearly marked. The gate will be open. Total driving time from Tarifa around 1 hour 15 minutes. By the 15th Century the Cartusian Monastery was already established as the undisputed centre for the breeding of the famous Jerezano horses, and has remained so until today, with over 300 head of these Spanish thoroughbreds. You are taken round the stables in small groups divided according to language and a short explanation is given. You see the new born foals, you see the one-year old colts, and the two year old colts. These horses are famed in particular for their beautiful proportions, their graceful movements, noble and docile nature, and energy. You are shown the veterinary clinic. Then comes the show, which is truly delightful and much less 'formal' in character than the show of the Dancing Horses in Jerez. The shows are dissimilar, and it is therefore enjoyable to visit both. Here, there is first a free-running show of the 1-year old colts, followed by a dressage exhibition, then the horse-drawn carriages, then the 2-year old colts, then the free running stallions. Thereafter there is a special demonstration featuring a string of brood mares, and if you are there at the right season, (which I think is mid-April to mid-May and again in November but please check this!) suddenly the gates open, and all their foals race down to join them, each one finding its own mother - a truly endearing sight.

53


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:25

Pagina 68

Tarifa Inside Out and Round About

MOROCCO

How come there is a section on an African country in a book about Tarifa, Spain, you may well ask! Firstly, it is only a 35 minutes ferry crossing from Tarifa to Tangier, and secondly I so enjoy visiting it myself with my starting point being Tarifa, that I want to share it with you. It does take a certain 'mind-set', it is Africa and not Europe, and for some it can be a real culture shock. I remain convinced that if you follow my recommendations you will enjoy it, feel safe, not be hassled and feel exhausted, but return richer for the experience. I always get this surge of excitement as I leave on the ferry (usually late!) from Tarifa harbour and head for another continent - AFRICA. I get an equal surge of happy anticipation as I leave the hustle and bustle of Tangier to return to the comparative quiet of Tarifa. The proximity to Africa does make Tarifa a VERY SPECIAL PLACE.

68


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:25

Pagina 69

Tangier Tangier, it is said, has a magic. This is not a magic that is immediately evident to the day tourist who goes with a large group or who is unlucky enough to get a disinterested guide! It has a fascination, yes. For many it is a culture-shock as 35 minutes after leaving Europe you are on the African continent and the contrast can be quite overwhelming. It takes at least a day to acclimatize, to feel comfortable in the small narrow shopping streets of the Medina where bargaining is a way of life, and to adjust to the number of beggars - who beg but do not hassle you as can happen in Europe (and as I have experienced in both Amsterdam and Paris). Tangier has a fascinating history and in the early part of the 20th century was the hub of the international community of famous artists (Matisse, Delacroix, McBay etc.) and writers (Paul Bowles) and film stars (Barbara Hutton) who lived and worked here‌. but they are long since gone. Tangier was not a favourite place of the former King, Hassan II, who died in 1999, and it fell into a state of tatty disrepair from which it is only now recovering. Other cities in Morocco had modernized rapidly. Tangier definitely got left behind. However, that is changing fast now, largely because of the interest of the new, young King, Mohamed VI. It will take time, but as a regular visitor over the last ten years, I can see and feel the changes, although today the amount of dirt and plastic-tat is still an eyesore and the as yet total lack of organization in the harbour in what is now an important entry point to Morocco and the African continent is disappointing. Nonetheless, Tangier is a place that grows on you (me!). You need to stay longer and in the right hotel in Tangier, with sufficient comfort and cleanliness, and to have the right contacts in order to see the best and avoid the worst. Get one of the shopkeepers to take you up to his roof terrace (where he will probably offer you a mint tea) and look out over the higgledy piggledy rooftops through an incredible maze of TV aerials up to the mosque and maybe you, too, will then experience the same fascination that I do.

A brief history of Tangier Tanjah (Anglicised as Tangier) is an ancient Phoenician town, founded by Carthaginian colonists in the 5th century BC. It came under Roman rule in the 1st century BC, in the 5th century AD Vandals swept across North Africa, a century later it became part of the Byzantine empire, and eventually came under Arab control in 702. In the later Middle Ages the chequered history of this city continued, being held by the Portuguese from 1471 to 1580 (the Portuguese fortifications in the nearby delightful small coastal town of Asilah should be visited!), then by Spain, then by Portugal again, until in 1661 it was given to Charles II of England as part of the dowry of the Portuguese Infanta Catherine of Braganza. In 1679 Sultan Moulay Ismail of Morocco imposed a crippling blockade on Tangier ultimately forcing the English to withdraw in 1684, but not before they destroyed most of the town and its harbour facilities. The town gradually declined until by 1810 the population was only some 5.000. Today (2008) the population is some 1.110.000. Note: in 1821 the first property to be acquired by a foreign government was the Legation Building - a gift to the U.S. from Sultan Moulay Suliman. This is well worth a visit today - it is an oasis of calm in the middle of the busy souk, and houses an interesting art collection including some fascinating old maps and the Forbes Collection of tin soldiers set up in battle formation. Tangier's geographical location made (and makes!) it a centre of European diplomatic and commercial rivalry in the 19th and 20th centuries, and its rich fishing waters remain a source of dispute between the Moroccan and Spanish fishing fleets up to today. At the beginning of the 20th century it had a population of about 40,000, including 20.000 Muslims (with Berbers predominating over Arabs - Berbers form some 70% of the total population of Morocco), 10.000 Jews and 9.000 Europeans of which 7.500 were Spanish. Morocco has remained a tolerant country, and although there are now far fewer Jews living there, 69


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:25

Pagina 82

My personal recommendations for restaurants in and around Tarifa There are many good restaurants in and around Tarifa, quite apart from the ones I mention. The following are just ones that I happen to like, each for a special reason, be it the food, the view, the service ‌ and preferably all three! INSIDE TARIFA International cuisine in Tarifa I tend to recommend the internationally owned restaurants for the evenings as these have more atmosphere/are more 'intimate' than most Spanish restaurants. The exception is Restaurant Mandragora. The international restaurants tend to be more expensive. In the restaurants recommended below (with the exception of Mandragora and Vaca Loca which don't take bookings) it is advisable to book. In high season (July and August) it is absolutely necessary to book, often some days ahead. SOUK Bar Restaurant - Tel.: +34 956 627 065 This restaurant is a favourite of many. It is German owned, and my guess is that there is hardly anyone in Tarifa who does not know Claudia personally! In any case, she always makes you feel that you are the one person she really wants to see. She gives you a very warm welcome; however, not all her staff are always quite as smiling! Very attractively decorated in Moroccan style, with candles everywhere, they serve delicious Moroccan food as well as excellent Thai dishes. The portions are very generous so keep this in mind when ordering. Try the Pastela - but take one portion for two! It has remained excellent value for money and in my view can compete with the best Moroccan restaurants in London and Paris at approximately half the price. The chairs are low and are not ideal for the elderly, the very tall or the pregnant. I tend to go early - around 20.30 hrs. - (as I do everywhere) to avoid long waits - the tables start to fill up around 9 p.m. Two sittings in high season. Booking absolutely essential. It is a short walk from the town centre so you do not need to take your car and thus you (the driver) can also enjoy a drink! At the traffic lights, with your back to the Puerta de Jerez (the old arch which is the entrance to the old town of Tarifa) take the main road in front of you (past Unicaja bank on the corner on your left). After about 700 mts. and having passed all the shops on left and right, you will see the Renault garage on your right; take the next turning on your left (it is just past the present bus station). Take the very first on your right, then the second on your left. Follow this road with modern apartment buildings on either side (you cross over one other road) and you will come to SOUK on your right. VACA LOCA : They take no bookings In the centre of Tarifa. From CafÊ Central, walk past Hotel Misiana and into the little street with the shop selling shells on your right. Take the second turning to the right and you will come to Vaca Loca. Very busy indeed in high season which of course speaks very well for their quality/price ratio - if you arrive around 22.00 hrs. you can have as many as 15 'tables' waiting before you! English owned, they serve large portions of really excellent meat with a salad accompaniment and delicious chips on wooden platters. Tables outside only. Go back to Misiana for a good coffee. Restaurant Silos Calle Cilla (next door to Dar Cilla Guest-house) A unique 16th century building, originally a granary In the past, when I laid a pretty dinner table and lit the candles, my husband always used to say "I enjoy a thuthpithon of thofithticathon". He had a very slight lisp and this is how 'a suspicion of sophistication 'came out; I always found it so endearing!

82


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:26

Pagina 85

Restaurant La Sacristia Easy to find - just go to the main street in town with the church at the end. Locate CafĂŠ Central (very central!) and take the little road opposite and where you see a profusion of green plants you will see the restaurant. There are a few tables tucked amongst the plants outside in suitable weather (nearly always) and tables inside are in a glass roofed courtyard. The fusion food (excellent sushi) and their steaks are to be recommended. Live music. Can be noisy (bang in the centre of town). The 'in-place' to see and be seen. A trendy atmosphere. Visit their stylish boutique with lovely silk (from Thailand) tops and original scarves. Casa Juan Louis Both the restaurant and the tapas bar are on Calle San Francisco in the centre of the old town. The restaurant is an experience - no menu, you take what comes (renowned for the pork) - this restaurant is an 'institution' and has been in Tarifa for many years, always with the same formula and owner. Beach bar/restaurant Bien - Star

What used to be yet another 'also-ran' slightly tatty thatched-roof bar is now, under the watchful eye of Francis who is Spanish from Granada, a simple, high-ceilinged restaurant bar with nice wooden tables and chairs (a change from the everlasting metal chairs that make an ear-splitting screech as they scrape across the floor). Bien Star (in Spanish you would say 'bien estar' which roughly translated means 'a good place to be') is on the beach - no, not 'onto the beach' but actually on the beach! 85


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

Los Castaños Cartajima

23:26

Pagina 100

Dar Cilla Tarifa

La Tangerina Tangier

Casa Cinco Vejer

Riad Azzar Marrakech

My personal recommendation for an ideal itinerary: five romantic roof-top terraces with unique views A personal recommendation : AN IDEAL ITINERARY for individual travellers - 9 (preferably 13) nights - in my favourite small boutique-style hotels/guesthouses off-the-beaten-track in Andalucia, Southern Spain, and in Morocco … each with a romantic roof-top terrace with a fantastic view. All five hotels are expatriate-owned and managed (high standards maintained) and I recommend them highly - apart from owning one of them, I stay at the others regularly and love them! English and other languages are spoken. Ideal season: (for weather, flowers and low-traffic density) mid-March to mid-July and September to mid-November. Arrive at Malaga Airport (rent a car) Go to Hotel Los Castaños in Cartajima, a little white village just south of Ronda; the roof terrace has wonderful views over the valleys full of chestnut trees; Approximately one and a half hour's driving time from the airport great mountain walks Stay 2 nights Dine first night in the hotel; the second night at La Casa Grande in Alpandeire www.loscastanos.com Restaurant La Casa Grande: 00.34.629 564 784 Go to Dar Cilla Guesthouse in Tarifa, the southernmost tip of Spain with a fabulous view from the large roof terrace across the Strait of Gibraltar to Morocco; Approximately a three hour -very beautiful- drive from Cartajima great beach walks En route lunch at La Estación in San Pablo de Buceite Stay 3 nights Dine at Souk, Mandrágora and Punta Sur www.darcilla.com Restaurant La Estación: 00.34.956 642 244 Restaurant Souk: 00.34.956 447 730 Restaurant Mandrágora : does not take bookings Restaurant Punta Sur: 00.34.956 684 326 100


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:26

Pagina 101

Leave your car in Tarifa and take the fast-ferry (35 minutes) across to Morocco Go to Riad Tangerina in Tangier with a fabulous view from the cosy roof terrace over the Kasbah and across the Strait of Gibraltar to Spain Stay 2 nights Explore the fascinating markets in Tangier Spend one day in Asilah, a charming blue-and-white artist's village 40 minutes (taxi) drive from Tangier Lunch at Restaurant Populaire (a must!) and dine in your Riad or at Relais de Paris or Hotel Continental www.latangerina.com Ask your hotel to make your restaurant reservations and/or find you a good guide Return to Tarifa and pick up your car Go to Casa Cinco in Vejer and enjoy the intimacy of this small guesthouse; take time just to relax on their roof terrace with a lovely view over the rooftops of this charming, white hill-top village. A fifty minute drive from Tarifa Stay 2 nights Lunch at Restaurant Castilleria (Easter to end September only) Dine at Restaurant El Jardin del Califa and in your hotel (request in advance) www.hotelcasacinco.com Restaurant Castilleria : 00.34 956 451 497 Restaurant El Jardin del Califa: 00.34.956 451 706 Drive to Jerez Airport and leave your hired car there I suggest you book all recommendations in advance. The hotels are 'almost never' closed. Some restaurants close in low season (November to March); some (La Estación in San Pablo de Buceite) in mid-summer. Please check. A 'perfect' itinerary would be 13 nights giving you time really to relax and enjoy the hotels (and their great roof-top terraces) as well as to see all there is to see….. just add one night to each of above stays! So many of our guests wished they had booked a couple more nights ….. An alternative itinerary with a touch of adventure would be: Go on to Marrakech from Tangier by train (take first class; journey takes 8 hours; easy to book through your hotel once you are in Tangier) and stay in Riad Azzar for 3 or 4 nights, enjoying delicious breakfasts and dinners (their charming staff spoil you to bits!) on their roof-top terrace with a superb view to the snow-covered peaks of the High Atlas mountains. www.riadazzar.com Fly back to your home country from Marrakech (direct flights now to the UK and The Netherlands - for other countries please check). Should you choose this itinerary, when renting your car at Malaga Airport you would have arranged to leave the car at a drop-off centre, probably in Algeciras, at the end of your stay in Dar Cilla Guest House (www.darcilla.com) It is then easy to get the bus from Algeciras back toTarifa. From Dar Cilla you walk to the ferry. Word of advice: if you decide to go to Marrakech, try to travel light as getting on and off the ferry is not easy with large suitcases; at least make sure to have a case on wheels! We give our Dar Cilla guests a lot of tips on how to circumvent the hassle! February, March and April (fresh snow on the High Atlas but warm in Marrakech) as well as September, October and November are the best months for your Moroccan adventure. I am told Christmas there is great, but have not (yet) been there at this time myself. 101


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:26

Pagina 106

106


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:26

Pagina 107

About Dar Cilla Guest-house

Dar Cilla Guest-house is unique of its sort in Tarifa. It is located on the outskirts of the old town within the old 12th century walls. 'Dar' is an Arabic word for a town house in which a series of suites are grouped around a central courtyard. Each suite is fully independent, but there is a pleasant air of 'sociability' and you will meet the owner and fellow guests on the roof terrace over a glass of wine. It is within easy walking distance of shops, restaurants, castle, harbour (daily fast ferry to Tangier takes 35 minutes) and the local town beach. Dar Cilla Guest-house comprises seven exclusive self catering apartments with the accent on charm and comfort. Quality furnishings, Moroccan 'touches', romantic bedrooms, attractive shower rooms, dining-sitting room, kitchen and good reading lights! It has a large roof terrace with an interesting collection of sculptures, reclining chairs for the use of guests and a shady bar area. This terrace has fabulous views across the old town and the busy shipping lane in the Strait of Gibraltar across to the mountains of Morocco. There is an open shower (hot and cold) on the terrace. Each apartment has its own entrance to the roof terrace. All have electric heating panels. Some have a wood burning fire for winter visitors. All apartments are fully furnished, towels (with the exception of beach towels) and bed linen provided. Dar Cilla is a STRICTLY NO SMOKING establishment. No animals. Facilities for children are limited - (children over 12 years only). Dar Cilla is for discerning travellers who appreciate style, a warm welcome, personal attention from the international staff, and a peaceful atmosphere; it is a very special place in the centre of Tarifa, confirmed by so many of our super guests who take time to write a review on websites like Tripadvisor! We look forward to welcoming you to Dar Cilla Guest-house. T: 0034 653 467 025 E: info@darcilla.com www.darcilla.com

107


TIARA-11032009.qxp

30/04/2009

23:26

Pagina 112

Zoë Ouwehand-Reid was born in the Uk. She graduated in Philosophy and left the UK aged 22 to live and work in 8 countries (Yugoslavia, UK, Egypt, Congo, Sudan, Belgium, Holland and Spain). She sold her Recruitment and Selection company, TopJobs Consultants in the Netherlands, to move to Tarifa with her husband in 1996. Some years later Zoë bought and converted the ruin next to her house, which is now Dar Cilla Guesthouse www.darcilla.com. Other publication: The Adventures of Bim and Bam - a love story for young and old.

“This is the book Tarifa was waiting for! Written with humour and flair ….” Jenny Kean, former editor of La Luz magazine, Costa de la Luz.

“This book is an easy read and ensures that you optimize your stay in the area” Zoë Hall, Travel Journalist (incl. for Daily Mail) .

Please visit www.tarifainsideout.net for updates 112


Look inside - Tarifa inside out and round about