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How about a long walk this summer, or if not an interesting armchair read about one.

By Dick Handscombe who has combined walking Spain with gardening Spain for over 25 years.

Spain is a very special country to walk in as there is a balance between level walking on the coastal and inland plains and in the many mountain ranges that surround the central plain and , most importantly, the weather is good for walking during most of the year. Even in the summer many parts of Spain are cooler than southern Andalucia.

Walks can obviously be an early morning hour or two, a full day, a weekend or a couple of months. We have combined all in walking Spain as the best way to experience it’s history, customs, cuisine, wines, gardens and natural flora and fauna in its’ wild areas.

The longest walk we have done was a 52 day, mid June to early August’, walk from the Bay of Biscay to the Beaches of the Med along the Pyrenean mountain range that separates Spain from France. Overall we walked 950 kilometres and the weather was amazingly kind. We only got wet three times, but on those days we were proverbably drowned. Stimulated by friends and family we have now written up the trek as ‘ Our 52 day retirement adventure along the Spanish Pyrenees’. The book is available from Amazon books as a soft covered book and as a Kindle version. The latter is proving to be a popular way of reading the book as it is less expensive than a traditional book.

We chose this route rather than doing the one at right angles to Santiago de Compostella as it would be quieter, more of a wilderness experience and a real adventure. In the event we met only one other long distance walker during the seven weeksas opposed to several hundred a day on the more populated walk. If you are searching for a life time odyssey consider our route. Take out two months of your early years of your retirement or if young fit into a University summer break or gap year.

We are told that the book is an interesting armchair read for the non-walker, retired walker, local stroller and serious walker alike. We hope you enjoy it.

© Dick Handscombe www.gardenspain.com March 2014.
 

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