Today I returned to my Cádiz home from a long weekend in Valencia. It was an interesting experience... Valencia is a really lovely city with a lot of cool things to see. My favorite part about it was the arquitecture, in Cádiz there isn't really any of that to write home about, but in Valencia it was beautiful. And of course La Ciudad de las ciencias y las artes was incredible. It is like a cluster of 5 or so buildings designed by a famous dude named Santiago something, modern art stuff. We had entradas for two of the sites: the aquarium and the science museum. The aquarium was really quite neat, we saw all sorts of marine life and at the end of our visit we saw a dolphin show, one of the most detailed and organized things I have ever seen in Spain. By the time we got to the science museum we were all pretty exhausted from walking and the day before's long bus ride, etc. However, I wanted to see as much of the science museum stuff as I could stand. Of the three floors I looked at everything on the third floor, nothing on the second floor (it was a very small exhibit filled with biographies about people I had never heard of), and maybe half of the first floor. I am satisfied with what I got out of the visit.
After the science and art stuff I went with my friends Britney and David to have food. They wanted paella but I do not like paella so I had tapas. After we ate the three of us walked back to the hotel and Britney and I took a nap. After the nap we awoke and strolled over to the centro comercial (mall) that was basically next door to the hotel. I bought a cute shirt and she bought some shoes, then we went to the grocery store for some snacks. After that we returned to the hotel and people tried to convince us to go out to some bars but we declined and instead chatted with another girl, Erin, and went to bed relatively early.
Let me back track to the beginning of the trip... We set out at 1AM Thursday morning, so it felt like Wednesday night... The trip took forever because our bus driver was nuts. Finally we got to our hotel at noon Thursday. We all checked in to the hotel, got settled, changed clothes. Then David suggested we rent bicycles and ride around the city, it sounded like a fabulous idea to me and Britney agreed so we headed out to find the bike rental place. We paid 10 euro each for 4 hours with the bikes. In Valencia there is an enormous park that covers a huge part of the city, in this park we rode toward the old part of the town. Once we got close we entered into the twisty, windey rodes of the old city and enjoyed the scenery: really cool graffiti, old buildings, pleasant plazas, and many churches. We had some beers and then an ice cream and set back on the bikes. We passed through some more of the old city then decided to head back to the bike shop. David told us the wrong way to go so we ended up way far from the bike place, had to turn around and back track a lot, but finally made it back to the bike rental shop before our time expired. It was a really fun ride, something I hadn't done in a long time. Afterward my bum hurt SO BAD though. It is still a little sore where I sat on the bike seat, but almost back to normal.
Later that night David and I went out in search of cool bars. Earlier in the day we had asked a waiter where the good places for going out were, he did not fail us! We went to the street with the cool bars and clubs and found many. We went in one very trendy bar and danced until 3:30AM, walked back to the hotel, and went to bed. So I was pretty tired for the next day's activities (the museum and aquarium stuff).
Saturday we left Valencia around 10AM to drive to a small town called Baeza. There we had a hotel to spend one night. When we arrived Britney and I decided to be motivated and walk around the town to see all of the touristy sites. We walked for maybe an hour and a half and saw basically the entire town. It was nice and had enough interesting stuff to look at, but small and not really anything important. David and Britney and I went out that night, the club was surprisingly good for such a small town. We danced and had fun, chatted with some Spanish people. Britney and I headed home earlier than David because Spain lost an hour today and we were already pretty tired.
This morning we got up and the bus took us to a town called Úbeda, about ten kilometres away. It was equally as small as Baeza but I think the buildings were prettier and more important and more plentiful. I walked around by myself because most of the group was really tired and bored with siteseeing by this point. I was also tired and bored of siteseeing but didn't want to waste my time there. I saw most of the tourist sites on the map that I had (there were like 30 sites) and I even entered in a small museum of the arqueology of Úbeda. I think I probably got the most out of the visit than anyone else in the school group.
After the short visit we all got back on the bus and drove the rest of the way (at this point 450 kilometres) back to Cádiz. Here I am now, tired of doing homework and trying to get prepared for my three day school week.
Next it is off to Barcelona, Madrid, and Italy - on THURSDAY... so soon!