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downundergal Gibraltar - A travel report by Kerrie
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Gibraltar,  Gibraltar - flag Gibraltar
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downundergal's travel reports

Day trip to Gibraltar

  19 votes
Page: 1 2 3 4
Gibraltar is such an anomaly that when we had the opportunity to visit with just a short detour how could we resist?

The whole of Gibraltar is a showcase of history especially when it comes to defending it's boundaries.




The Rock from the distance.
The Rock from the distance.
Linking the Mediterranean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean and rising from the sea like a giant monolith long before you even come close the Rock has drawn people for millennia. Control the rock and you control the Straight.

It is amazing that Gibraltar is still in existence. But according to most of the guide book blurbs this is the way the locals want it stay.

The town is full of twisting, narrow winding streets and to drive to the sights on the upper rock was on a series of very steep, switchback roads that were in parts so narrow that there was only room for one car to pass. Parking is at a premium due to the lack of space and as many roads are dead end you need to be a contortionist or a good driver to turn your car around. So driving in Gibraltar is only for someone that is comfortable with their car or who as most of the local cars attest to don’t mind having a scrape or dent up the side.

Favourite spots:
View
View
Interesting that on arrival and departure you actually drive or walk across the airport runway to cross the border. It was a first for me. I guess that if an aircraft was landing all the traffic has to wait.

At the most southern tip of the peninsular there is a lighthouse and also a lookout that offers great views towards Africa. I found it amazing how many tankers there were in the Straight.

There are also stupendous views the higher up you climb.

All around the area there are plaques explaining different parts of the Rocks history. The area is littered with old cannons, metal hooks bolted into the cliff faces that were used for the hauling heavy artillery and old gun batteries. All of it is testament to man’s determination to make full use of the strategic importance of its position.


What's really great:
Piece of Stalectite sawn through. Amazing colours.
Piece of Stalectite sawn through. Amazing colours.
St Michael’s Cave is a huge cave that extends some 700 feet down into the earth and boasts some marvelous stalactites and rock formations. There is one enormous cavern that back in the 1940’s it was used as a military hospital. Nowadays it is also used for live music concerts.

Sights:
Re-enactment down in the tunnel.
Re-enactment down in the tunnel.
For 26 Euros for 2 persons and a car this gives you access to the major sights on the Upper Rock which was the highlight of our visit.

Initially started in 1783 the Great Siege Tunnel is a long, downward sloping tunnel that connects a series of caverns. In each of these caverns there is a reenactment of an historic event including a short history with life size models complete with voices that shouted out things such as “Stop, who goes there?” to add to the realism.

City under Siege is another exhibition that concentrates on how the standard of living (or lack of it) would have been in days past. Using reenactments it shows punishment such as floggings and how difficult life was at times for the general population when they were cut off from the world and survived on grasses and tree roots and rudimentary medical facilities and supplies.


Accommodations:
Typical street - the Foster's sign made me feel quite at home.
Typical street - the Foster's sign made me feel quite at home.
We had read that accommodation was scarce and very expensive, especially at 2.77 ponds to the Aussie dollar so opted not to stay.

Hangouts:
Cheeky fellow.
Cheeky fellow.
This is a hangout but in the more traditional sense of the word.

The Apes Den is also up on the Upper Rock. The Monkeys are cheeky little things and they will soon be swinging off your car aerial and trying to snatch whatever food they can from you. One little guy was patriotically waving the English flag more than likely hoping for a free treat from the one of the onlookers.

Other recommendations:
The Rock showing O'Haras battery at the top.
The Rock showing O'Haras battery at the top.
Gibraltar is overwhelming British although the Pound and Euro are universally accepted.

We actually drove across from Spain on an afternoon visit and managed to see nearly all Gibraltar has to offer.

It took no time whatsoever on the crossing over, a visa stamp in our passports and we were on our way. It took much longer on the way out, the queue was much slower and the customs control was quite strict searching any number of cars. We were waved straight through.
Check before crossing on if you need a visa as it may differ depending on your country of origin.


Published on Sunday July 9th, 2006


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Wed, Aug 09 2006 - 07:07 AM rating by gloriajames

Great report kerrie! 5*

Mon, Jul 17 2006 - 06:10 PM rating by karlakern

I like your pictures!!! because...in special at the mokey, jijijiji!!! ;)

Fri, Jul 14 2006 - 07:32 AM rating by marianne

An enjoyable read and lovely photos.

Wed, Jul 12 2006 - 01:13 PM rating by isaacmolina

Your reports are always garantee of good work. It is like the signature of Picasso!

Mon, Jul 10 2006 - 10:33 AM rating by frenchfrog

Really nice report, the monkey with the Union jack is really cute, very interesting infos.

Mon, Jul 10 2006 - 12:50 AM rating by ravinderkumarsi

WONDERFUL REPOR ,NICE PICTURES

Sun, Jul 09 2006 - 07:03 AM rating by mistybleu

Interesting day trip. I also liked your checky chappy picture.

Amanda

Sun, Jul 09 2006 - 07:02 AM rating by st.vincent

I visited Gibraltar twice in 2002 and have a half completed report, so yours reminded me that I must finish it. You seem to have managed to see a lot in the day that you were there, the Great Siege Tunnels and St Michaels Cave are fascinating as you say and there are some great views from the top of the Rock.

Great photo of the ape, they sometimes seem to be posing for tourists, I have a photo of one eating a bag of crisps. And the walk across the airport runway is a bit disconcerting, I think the sign says “look out for aircraft and walk across quickly” or something like that.

5*’s for bringing back some good memories.

Cheers
Clive

Sun, Jul 09 2006 - 06:05 AM rating by davidx

Funnily enough you don't mention any of the things except the apes and shipping that stand out in my memory [buses, policemen, pubs and, most of all, water storage.]
Even so, a good and interesting report.

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