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The Seven Wonders of Spain

By Mr Grumpy - Thu 25th Aug 2011

I was watching Karl Pilkington on SKY TV's 'An Idiot Abroad' last night, which is based around the subject of the seven wonders of the modern world. The programme discussed what the best attractions in world were considered to be : Architectural structures; buildings; cultural events etc... and I decided to shamelessly steal this idea and use it as the subject of one of my own blogs. I'm nowhere near as well travelled across Spain as I should be, but am reasonably confident that I can scrape a list of 7 places together.

So what would my 'Seven Wonders' of Spain be ? :

1.) Sagrada Familia - Barcelona

A Nice enough building, will probably be even better when the construction team stop pandering to the sterotype of all Spanish workmen being slow (although taking 128 years to date, and with an estimated 15 years until completion I think that they have blown their performance related bonus). Of course, the real wonder here is how on earth they can justify charging 14 euros to visitors for what is basically looking around a construction site (or at least it was the last time I went)

2.) Mount Teide - Tenerife

The lengthy car drive up to the top and the view across to Africa, with the temperature drop along the way making you wonder why you didn't wear more than a vest and a pair of speedos. Long drive just for what is basically a nice view, though.

3.) Moros y Cristianos - Alcoy

Basically a load of locals dressing up as either invading Muslims or defending christians, parading round the streets and setting off firecrackers and generally being Spanish - a kind of poor man's Mardi Gras in Rio. I wonder if this sort of thing would be seen as an affront to the Muslim religion and be banned on the streets of the UK ?

4.) The 'White Villages' - las Alpujarras

The drive over the Sierra Nevadas from Gaudix, past the summit and the Ski Village, down through the famous White Villages, enjoying the view down to Malaga and across the Med to Morroco on a clear day - the winding roads making you wonder if you stand a chance of making it in one piece if you should encounter a speeding truck coming towards you round one of those bends. (I've just realised that 'Views' and 'Fiestas' are going to feature quite heavily in this list. How sad am I ?)

5.) The Alhambra - Granada

I've put this one in for two reasons : One, because I've been there myself and so have to go along with the Cliche. Two, because a recent news article reported how the Government of Morocco were claiming 50% of the revenues taken by the Alhambra in ticket sales as they maintain that the last ruler kicked out of the palace was of Moroccan origin and unfairly evicted. I wonder if they honestly think that they stand a cat in hell's chance of ever seeing any money for this ?

6.) Las Fallas - Valencia

The City of Valencia and the Town of Denia, further down the Costa pay hundreds of thousands of Euros each year to build dozens of enormous intricate paper mache sculptures each March 17th. Then they burn them and set off a load of firecrackers called 'Mascletas'. (I wonder why the Spanish never seem to get bored with fireworks of any description ?)

7.) Castillo de Alaro - Mallorca

The climb up to the Castle / Monastery atop the hill overlooking the village of Alaro in Mallorca, and the view across to Palma and the Med (told you there would be another 'view' in here somewhere). Nice Venta serving 'cordero al horno' near the top of the Mountain, but I wonder why on earth I ever listened to my Mum, who recommended the trip to me, when she said that the climb was 15 mins, when it was closer to 2 hours.

Comment on this Blog

Despite "la crisis"?
Mo - Wed, 21st Sep 2011
News today that the Sagrada Familiar 'could' be completed in 15 years time. Bit of a difference between that and the original 126 years time estimation then ? - Anyway, I think I'll leave my Blog unchanged for now, not holding my breath and all that ...
Mr Grumpy - Tue, 20th Sep 2011
A pretty good list Mr G, and like you I prefer the wonders of nature to man-made ones. However the white villages aren't just in the Alpujarras - they stretch right across to the Sierra de Cádiz (I should know). And the Moors did build many of our most splendid cities and buildings (including the Alhambra of course) before they were ethnically cleansed from Spain during the Reconquest, in a manner far more brutal than the Moros y Cristianos celebrations might indicate...
Alcalaina - Wed, 31st Aug 2011
Well, there´s only one answer to this isn´t there Wonderful!"
Mo - Sat, 27th Aug 2011

Three things here Paul :

1 ) If you read the Title (Above) it clearly says " MY " 7 Seven wonders - not yours.

2 ) If you want to read a stereotypical Guide full of cheesy Cliche's and obvious wonders then I can recommend a few for you.

3) I haven't been to either of those places. I choose to blog from first hand experience. If you want me to lie about having been there just to impress you and so this blog can pretend to be a glossy guide book you will be disappointed. Sorry.

Mr Grumpy - Sat, 27th Aug 2011
There are so many better and more obvious choices you seem to have overlooked : The Guggenheim in Bilbao, or the Easter Parades in Sevilla maybe ?
Paul Gibson - Thu, 25th Aug 2011
Thanks Mother, if you are an experienced hiker, setting out at dawn with adequate supplies of water, a detailed map and without a girlfriend in high heels, then I guess you probably can make it in 1 hour. For those of us living in the real world (and badly advised) it takes a bit longer.
Mr Grumpy - Thu, 25th Aug 2011
Never let it be said that Mr Grumpy is prone to exageration !!!!! - it takes a max of 1 hour to walk up - but as he says- is well worth the effort (perhaps 15 mins down ?)
Margaret Wells - Thu, 25th Aug 2011

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