Sunday, April 05, 2015

Hiking Ordesa & Monte Perdido National Park - A Beautiful 2 Days in the Pyrenees

Since we happened to have a couple free days over Easter, Andrés and I decided to drop K off at doggie daycare and  head to the Pyrenees (Ordesa & Monte Perdido National Park) for some beautiful mountain views and a four hour hike.  Well, it was supposed to be a much longer (and more difficult) hike, but here is what happened when we arrived:

  • Due to the crowds of people for the long weekend, the road to drive from the bottom of the mountain to the parking lot in the meadow where we would have normally parked (pradera),  was closed and they were shuttling people in coaches.
  • The queue for the bus was 1.5 hours long --- so, we decided to walk 2 hours instead! 
  • When we reached the pradera, we were planning to take the Cola de Caballo  (Horse's Tail) trail, which is a medium difficulty path to a beautiful waterfall. 
  • That, too, was closed!!! (due to climbing conditions, not Easter, I think)
  • So, we took the easy path, among hoards of tourists and managed to finish it in less than 2 hours and took the bus down to save a bit of time
  • We even had a mini snowball fight on the way (yup, there is snow!)
  • Plus side:  This left us with enough time to check out two cute little towns in the area
Below is a short slideshow of the scenery. We were so focused on the scenery (and on rushing ahead of the annoying groups of VERY slow families with strollers) that we didn't take pictures of people, just of Spain's picturesque beauty.  Apparently, there are a ton of trails in these mountains, so we'll be back on a regular weekend to check out the more adventurous trails (ie: I will be boosting up the gym/workout schedule! Free weights and hot yoga, here I come! I might actually have to give pilates a try...)

(Note: if the slideshow doesn't work in your mobile browser, please click here to access my slideshow via my FlickR page)

Dinner in Huesca

This blog post would not be complete without a description of our dinner on Thursday night. We stopped in a town called Huesca at "the best restaurant in town", called something like The Oyster (I think).  We were greeted by the friendly, but very red-neck owner.  There, I had a lot of fun explaining that I would like a vegetarian meal. 
 - Owner:  So, you don't eat meat? 
 - Me:   No meat, thanks
 - Owner: Fish? Seafood?
 - Me: No meat, fish, or seafood, please. I'll have the tortilla de patatas and a salad, with no meat or fish. 
- Owner: Ok.
- A: So, did you ask for your meal to be vegetarian?
- Me: Yes, he understood
- A: So, did you ask him not to put tuna in your salad?
- Me: Of course, I told him no meat, fish or seafood.

Guess what came in my salad?  A BIG hunk of tuna. I was about to complain, but the guy was so shocked and worried that something was wrong, that I just chucked my tuna onto Andrés' plate. 

Oh, by the way --- worst house wine EVER. That's saying something in Spain.

What an adventure! Lol!

The other towns we visited were:
 -   Biescas (where we had a sugary breakfast of pastry and torreja, the Spanish version of French toast)
- Sabinanigo, where we took a picture of a beautiful church (it was closed, unfortunately)

Casa/Bar Estevan in  Jaca

Andrés wanted to check out a burger bar called Casa Estevan in the small town of Jaca (which we thought would be totally empty, as it is a TINY little town). There were so many tourists that it took us over 20 minutes to find an ILLEGAL place to park. Thankfully we didn't get a ticket! (And there was a queue of cars waiting to illegally park where we had when we left!). Excuse the horrible mobile phone quality of my food pics!

Although they lack veggie burgers on their GIGANTIC beef burger menu, they do have amazing salads. We had beer mixed with lemon drink (a normal thing here).

Check out the image below of my newly gained Spanish vocabulary from this trip (I'm going to try to add one of these on every trip I do):

Happy Easter everyone!  


Sean said...

Haven't seen much 'French' toast in Paris either ;) Guess we're trying to fancy-up something that's pretty basic :P. When they do make it, they call it 'pain perdu'

And your vegetarian-adventure reminds me of the constant trouble you had in Singapore, especially the time we went to Kenny Rogers Roadhouse. Remember that?

Sapna said...

Oh yeah, Kenny Rogers!!! Hahaha! Yes, I also remember the one hawker stall vendor who tried to get me to take a serving of green vegetables (which had a GIANT raw fish with its ugly eye intact), right on top of it). Ah, the veggie life!