We have not travelled far today but we have crossed quite a high ridge on the old coast road to do so. There is a smart new motorway a few miles inland that dives through a long tunnel under these mountains. That is our old friend the E15 Inverness to Algerciras highway!

We had a lazy start this morning, said goodbye to David and Sue (the only other Brits on the aire) and then fully serviced Bertie ready for our 18 mile drive! Since we are not going far we are not going through any towns and our new aire is also based in the countryside. That gives us a slight headache as we are getting a bit low on cash. Google reported an ATM at a truck stop not too far away so that was our first stop. The little bank was really busy which is not surprising considering that it is at least 10 miles to the next one.

It is hard to capture the scale of these huge fleece tents that are used to grow things like tomatoes.

Suitably enriched we got back on to our road over the hills. The Sat Nav in its wisdom found us a shortcut right through the tomato plantations which included a short stretch along the dry bed of a small river! This must have been quite a drive before the new roads were built as all the coastal traffic would have come along here and climbed up to the pass at 1200ft. It is a proper twisty mountain road hanging on to the edge of the mountains. Good parking area at the very top where we could look down in to both valleys so we stopped for coffee and to enjoy the views.

At the top of the pass
Looking back to the tomato plantations where we have spent the last few days
Looking on to the Cabo Cope and our new location

Dropping down the far side we entered a slightly different area. Whilst there are still some tomato plantations under the fleece tents the bulk of the field we drove through now are full of vegetables such as cabbages, cauliflowers and  lettuce which are all growing in open fields.

Our destination tonight is the Tortuga Mora motorhome site a few miles short of the Cabo Cope and is in the middle of conutryside with the nearest town some 2 miles further on. It is privately owned and run and has the special attraction of direct access to the beach with no road between the site and the sea as is usually the case. We were personally welcomed by Domingo the site owner who showed us where to parked and assured us that if we need anything just ask him. The site is on raised ground and we have a terraced pitch near the top with great views. A big bonus is that we are close enough to an electric point to be able to connect to electricity. The forecast is for cloud and even rain for the next couple of days so mains hook up would useful.

Parked at Tortuga Mora
Can you spot Bertie – you will need to zoom in

I am glad we filled up with fresh water as the water here is not drinkable. Domingo has drinking water tankered in to fill up his big tank and so he charges €2 per 100 litres which is fair enough but needs to be factored in. Our tank holds 100 litres and we usually need to refill with fresh water every three days although we can go four days if we are very careful with it. This place is not expensive at €10 per day including electricity (€7 without it).

The beach at Tortuga Mora

Having parked and connected Bertie we set off to survey our new location. We found the path down to the beach which is a lovely mix of rocky bits and sandy bits. We even found an official sign saying that this beach is used by turtles and at certain times of the year they haul themselves out of the sea to lay their eggs! No sign of them this time of the year sadly. There are three other British vans here so tomorrow we will see if we can find anyone to talk too. Most of the other vans are German and many are clearly here for long stays. I like it here and we may stay awhile but we need to get shopping sussed. I have enough stocks on board for two more days and bread is delivered to the site. Tomorrow we will cycle the 2.5kms in to the small town of Calabardina which has a small supermarket and see if we can stock up.

A wider shot of the beach and in the distance you can see the high ridge we crossed to get here
Tortuga Mora
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