Portsmouth to Santander last Friday (1 Viewer)

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Feb 22, 2016
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Caught the Cap Finistere last Friday which sailed an hour early (4pm) due to impending bad weather. After a bad night before (we broke our journey at the Stratton Arms near Oxford where our electricity supply was flakey to say the least and the parking was very muddy) we were a trifle anxious.

We had a lovely beef stew and retired to bed in a small bit perfectly comfortable cabin and went to sleep. We kept waiting for the rough seas but happily, we slept well all night and when we woke at 9:00 am, the sea was like a boating pond.

We disembarked on time and set and parked at an aire near the university at Santander. About 5 other vans there (space for 20). The evening was calm and mild and we walked to a nearby supermarket. But that night, the wind and the rain started. We barely slept a wink it rained so hard and the van was buffeted like nothing I've experienced before. I got drenched filling with water and emptying the toilet and got underway as soon as possible. Now spending Sunday evening in Leon where it's calm and clear. Off to Chavez tomorrow.
 
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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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Hi Stewart J, the Santander aire coordinates are:

N43° 28’ 20” W3° 48’ 11”

There is free water, grey and black waste drains and Lupa supermarket 5 minutes walk.
Enjoy.

Ingwe
 
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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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Well, after the wet and windy night at Santander and the three and a half hour drive to Léon, the night there was lovely. In a safe,free aire right opposite a shopping mall with a supermarket, we slept soundly with no noise whatever.
Léon was the site of a Roman encampment and is now the largest municipality of the Léon province. It holds over a quarter of the region's population. It is also the site of the first parliament in Europe. Perhaps our lot at Westminster could learn something.
We enjoyed a sunny late Sunday afternoon walk. Even the statues were enjoying the sun.
Today, after another nearly 4 hour drive we are at Chaves in Portugal on a pay site 17€ for all services and wifi and only 5 minutes walk from a lovely town with a fort and church. Very mild 12°C and dry. Tomorrow we have a 2 hour drive to Lamego where we plan to stay at a free aire at a port winery nearby. Will buy a couple of bottles no doubt. The route is apparently, part of the Portuguese equivalent of Route 66.

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Apr 11, 2015
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@Ingwe can't put a like for the pictures well i could but no way could I do the second, is it a long walk round?
 
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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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@scotzsue-ha! We didn't try it either (I was tempted but my better half said it it'd end in tears or a week in casualty) so we used the lovely footbridge almost right next to it!
Lovely town and the prices are so low.
 
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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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After a good night's sleep at a parking at Chaves Guest House (17€ for van, 2 adults, ehu, wifi, water and waste) we set off to Port country. A much shorter drive today on the N2, the Route 66 of Portugal.
Parked up at Peso da Régua in front of the river. 3€ for 16amp hookup. Very clean and well organised. Each bourne has fresh water and there is black waste drain too.
Went for a walk around the town. Huge Sandeman hoarding on the hill and we bought one bottle of tawny port (not Sandemen) after a tasting in a shop. Absolutely delicious.
Time now for a stir fry, a swift Bock beer at the nearby bar and then early to bed. Further down the N2 tomorrow. Better than racing for the Algarve. Seeing lots of lovely Portuguese villages and interesting scenery.
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glastry

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Probably one of the best motorhome spots in the world!
Stay a while, have another port ,take the train either direction,
It's called learning to be Content!
Have to go now ,the dishes need washed.
And there is a bottle of port already open.
 
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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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Am well into the bottle of port. Went well as an aperitif to our stir fry. And as a post dinner drink. It is lovely here. We are very privileged. We realise this!

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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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Today a longish drive to Tomar a UN heritage site. It rained all day but it's very mild and we don't need the heating in the van.

We are parked up in a free aire. It used to be a municipal campsite but is now a free motorhome parking. There are really huge pitches ( no hookup) but really clean toilets and showers. But no hot water. A shame as I wouldn't mind paying for some hot water. Still, as it's entirely free, shouldn't moan. Tomorrow we'll head off to Evora. But not before a walk around this ancient Templar town. A lovely lasagne and salad for supper.
Watched some episodes of 'Two Doors Down' using the new Kindle Firestick. Works really well on the cheap and fast MEO internet (€15 for 30gb for 15 days.
Sleep well.
 
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Ingwe
Feb 22, 2016
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As we didn't get to see much of Tomar due to the heavy rain and wind, we decided to stay another night at the free aire in the centre of Tomar. Was having a nap in the afternoon, after a visit to the oldest synagogue in Portugal and a chicken piri-piri lunch, when I heard a noise outside our van. I looked and saw a bloke emptying his toilet cassette into the fresh water trough (under the fresh water tap). I knocked on the window (I was in my smalls, too much detail I know) but he carried on. By the time I got outside he’d buggered off. Another Brit even nearer to the tap, was out by now too. We were both pretty annoyed as there is a perfectly good chemical waste outlet right near the toilets. Unfortunately, we didn’t see which van he went to and it was raining pretty hard. So we called it quits. It really is a shame that some tossers ruin it for all of us.
This was a free aire with water, really clean toilets and waste facilities right in the town centre! I bet the poor Portuguese workers who will have to clean it up will have a high opinion of motorhomers. The other Brit unblocked the plug hole as he had a plunger thingy so well done to him. But there was still a mess and stink. Never mind that the dumper had polluted a clean water area.
Anyway, it’s rained all day and night snow at 15:30 we’ve arrived at the free aire at Evora. If/when it stops raining, we’ll go and look at the Roman sights and standing stones.
I hope you’re all keeping warm and out of the snow and ice.
 

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