Tag Archives: stork

Trujillo and the heart of Spain

We’d originally planned to stay in Caceres for four nights but the presence of the film crew in the old city rather ruined it for us.  We still loved the age and character of the place, but being a little frustrated at not being able to ramble at will we decided to move after two and when Thursday morning dawned we headed the 40 or so miles east to Trujillo.

Trujillo is yet another place that we remember visiting in the course of our travels in 2003, but yet again when we arrived we struggled to remember anything about it.  Perhaps we were like American tourists (if there are any Americans who chance upon this blog I apologise for casting you all in the same dim light) and did all our sightseeing at high speed from a moving vehicle (“if this is Thursday we must be in Trujillo”) or more likely senility has now taken a firm hold.
View of TrujilloAnyway, arriving in this lovely and ancient town we looked forward to getting stuck into some serious rambling, only to find …………. yes, the place was also full of film crew, fully intent on recreating a mythical world for the entertainment of all those who believe that dragons are real and can’t be bothered to get off their arses to visit the real world.  Fortunately, the layout of Trujillo is such that despite some restrictions we could still get to see many of the beautiful buildings and take in some magnificent views of the city and surrounding countryside.

Film crew filling the main square at Trujillo – HBO making a takeover bid for Central Spain

Leaving Trujillo we continued heading east across more lovely scenery, rising at times to a couple of thousand feet before dropping down to vast and largely empty plains (except for several billion olive trees) interrupted by the occasional village or small town.  At one point we stopped to admire the view at a mountain pass to be told by a Dutch couple that they’d seen vultures and a ‘black ostrich’.  I thought of alerting the Spanish Zoological Society to this rare sighting before  rumbling that something might perhaps have been lost in translation – for ostrich read stork! 

We spent the night at a camperstop at Aldeanueva de Barbarroya – only two spaces but a nice bar in staggering distance.  Perfect.

Caminos and Storks

From León our route criss-crossed several of the Caminos de Santiago which are marked by signs in the shape of a scallop shell and by large numbers of pilgrims making their way westward along roads and paths, some of which pass through the centre of towns (including León) and along busy roads.  No doubt the journey brings peace and solace to those who complete the pilgrimage, but finding time for reflection must be a challenge when you have cars and trucks thundering past at high speed.
We stopped to stretch our legs at Hospital de Orbigo which is reputedly the oldest bridge in Spain.  As it’s on one of the Caminos we tagged along behind some groups of pilgrims deluding ourselves that our half-mile stroll had some connection with the somewhat longer pilgrimages being made by those around us.
This part of Spain is home to large numbers of Storks who have a habit of building their nests in the most inaccessible but obvious of places.  Presumably at the end of every season the locals have to get out their ladders and shin up to remove the remains of the enormous structures – if one fell on your head you’d know about it!