Yesterday morning I woke up early and headed off to take a day trip to Benidorm, Spain which is about a 45 minute drive from Alicante. The train that runs along the coast of the Costa Blanca has a station about 5 minutes walk from Ania’s flat so it’s really convenient.
The train system here in Alicante is called (TRAM). As long as you grab yourself a train timetable map, you’ll figure out how to use the TRAM fairly quickly. I figured that if I was to get lost, I would have all day to find my way back home so I jumped on the TRAM at the MARQ stop and headed out on a journey that ended up taking much longer than I expected.
Considering Benidorm is about 45 minutes drive, I figured that the TRAM might take an hour, or an hour and fifteen minutes. Well after meeting a 77 year old English man and more than two hours later I could not wait to get off of the train. I had been getting my ear talked off by this old english gentleman for the last hour and a half and he even caused us to miss our stop (Benidorm) so we had to get off and wait for another TRAM to take us 4 stops back to Benidorm.
Finally after my new friend and I arrived in Benidorm he insisted that we take a bus down to the center of town where the restaurants and beach is. Now we’re looking a total of two and a half hours to get to Benidorm. As soon as we got off the bus we stopped into this English Pub to grab a bite to eat.
After lunch I split off from my English friend and headed towards the beach, he wanted to come along, but I just had to lose him or I knew that I wouldn’t get anything done in Benidorm. I headed down to Playa de Llevant Beach and took in some of the beautiful scenery. I walked most of the length of the beach until I got to the rock cliffs that surround the east edge of the beach. I wanted to take a swim so I figured that the safest place to leave my belongings would be over on the rocks where nobody sunbathes and where I could just jump in and stay close in case someone decided to walk towards the cliffs. Everything worked out perfectly and I got to take a nice swim and relax for the first time since I arrived in Benidorm.
After my swim I walked back up through the city, and stopped into a few souvenir shops but I couldn’t find anything in them. It was all junk. I knew that I would have a long journey back to Alicante so I headed for the bus to Benidorm Train Station.
As I was waiting at the Benidorm Train Station I met a guy named Darren, originally from Co. Waterford. We chatted a bit about traveling and eventually I found out that the reason that he was in Benidorm today was because he owns two Irish Pubs there. He was down in Benidorm for the day making sure everything was in order and checking in on the Pubs. During the train ride back to Alicante, we realized that we were on the same RyanAir flight on Saturday afternoon from Dublin to Alicante, which was quite odd.
Darren is staying in the Hotel Melia down on the beach here in Alicante because a few of his friends have been working on a movie with Colin Farrell here for the last few weeks. He went on to tell me that he is moving out to Benidorm this weekend to take care of the pubs for the next few months so he decided to make a stop to catch up with his friends while he was in Alicante. By the end of the train ride back to Alicante, we arranged to meet up for a few pints later that night.
Myself, Ania, Aiste, Aiste’s mother, and friend decided to go out to dinner last night as both Aiste’s mother and I were flying out today. We went out to a restaurant on the esplanade called Tarantino’s, it wasn’t too bad. After Tarantino’s Ania, Aiste and I headed off to meet up with Darren in O’Hara’s Irish Pub on the esplanade and we had a pint there before heading to Desden, home of the 1 Euro pints of Budweiser! A few pints later, Ania and Aiste headed home and I stayed out for one more round with Darren before heading home.
Today I’m just lounging here with Ania until my flight 6:00PM this evening. I might take a stroll downtown to see if I can pick up a few little things, but other than that I’m just going to spend my last day here relaxing before I head back home to Dublin.