Tag Archives: moving to spain

Our first 6 months in Spain




Our first 6 months in Spain have come and gone – It’s incredible how quickly the time has passed.

It seems like only yesterday that we had arrived in Spain to snow and temperatures of -2C. Now it’s 46C outside and the air conditioning has just packed up in the car !

That said it’s lovely and cool in the cave, with an average temperature of 24C.

So whilst we hide like vampires from the midday sun, I thought I would take time out and share the 6 key things we have learnt in our first 6 months in Spain.

So here goes …
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Travelling through France to Spain





Travelling through France to Spain takes a look at our car route and the associated costs of driving  from the UK to our cave home in Andalucia.

The reason we found ourselves back in the UK was that our dogs had a release date from quarantine of 28th March. It was time for the dogs to complete their journey from the Turks and Caicos to Spain 🙂

Leaving our cave house, we took the ferry from Santander back to Portsmouth. We took advantage of the trip by de-touring to spend a couple of wonderful days with our friends in Extremadura.

What we really wanted to do was a repeat of January,  when we had taken a  ferry to Spain and drive to our cave house from there. Sadly, there are limited dog holding facilities on either the Bilbao or Santander ferry,  as such they tend to be booked months and months in advance.

This meant our only option was to drive through France and on into Spain. Continue reading

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Successes and Setbacks (part one)





Successes and setbacks takes a tongue in cheek look at how we have fared during our first 4 weeks in both our cave house and Spain in general.

To be honest though, we still don’t know where the last 4 weeks have gone. We are convinced that time runs at a different pace in this part of Spain.  A blink of the eye and another day has gone, maybe we need to stop taking so many siestas ?

Anyway we digress.
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Heading to Spain




The planning is over; the packing is done and the goodbyes have been said.  We are finally heading to Spain to start a new live in our cave house 🙂

Having weighed up the options, we decided to take the ferry from Portsmouth to Bilbao then drive from there to our cave house in Baza. This option was slightly more expensive but cut out over 800 miles and nearly 12 hours of driving through France. We could have got a cheaper ferry the following week, however after 3 weeks, we were more than ready to leave the UK. Also the cost of staying another week would have been greater than the savings of a later ferry.

As to going by ferry … only time would tell whether travelling the Bay of Biscay at this time of year was wise !

For those that may be looking to do something similar, at the end of the blog I have detailed the different options available and associated costs.

But for now, simply share our travel experience 🙂 Continue reading

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Our newly renovated cave




How time flies … fast forward 6 months and we were on our way back to Andalucia for a first glimpse of our newly renovated cave.

We were both quietly reflecting on what sight would greet us when we pulled up outside as we had seen no pictures and had no word on the progress of the renovations since meeting the builder back in September last year ( It’s not as bad as it sounds as he was highly recommended and a lack of communication appears to be the Spanish way).

Anyway we need not have worried. Turning the corner there were suddenly 2 very excited people in the car, the caves had been transformed (well the outside at least). The whole exterior of the cave had been patched up and repainted, even the garden had been tidied up !
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Forums, forums, forums





Forums have become part and parcel of our everyday life There are forums for almost anything you can think of and they provide a wealth of information.  I have used them for digital photography tips, advise on cave diving setups, how to solve software problems, when to use specific spanish words … and everything in between.

forums

So, when we started to look into buying a property in Andalucia in general and a cave house in particular, a google search of potential forums was one of my first ports of call.
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Attempting to learn Spanish





There is no need to learn Spanish If you simply want to be a Brit abroad as there are many parts of Spain where you can easily live in ‘Little Britain’.

learning spanish

That wasn’t what we wanted though.  Having opted to buy a property in rural Spain it had already become clear to us that we would need to learn Spanish, not just to integrate but simply to deal with day-to-day living. This was bought home to us when Josie was taken ill on our first visit and we had to go to the health centre in Huescar.
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