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Visiting Gibraltar

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Gibraltar is approximately a 45 minutes drive from the Marbella area and it is well worth a visit. Gibraltar is historical, fun and not surprisingly there is a chance for a little shopping.

Don't forget your passports! Gibraltar is a self governing British territory so you will need to show your passports to get across the border and you will also need to change some Euro's to Gibraltar Pounds (or exchange UK Sterling one for one), however, many shops will take Euros and even US Dollars.

It is recommended to park on the Spanish side, there are a number of car parks and it's much easier than sitting in the queues. Once you have found a space simply walk across the border to the bus stop and don't be surprised if the bus into the town centre is delayed by a plane landing or taking off because the runway is right across the road!

When you get off the bus walk to Main Street where you will find Marks and Spencer in the same street as shops selling fine silks and Moroccan furniture. Among the hustle and bustle of Main Street it is great to get a coffee and watch the world go by. Here you will find a lot of tourists as more and more of the luxury cruise ships are now pulling into port and also you may find a Royal Navy warship berthed alongside with the lads (and lasses nowadays) intent on letting their hair down, in Navy speak Gib (that's Gibraltar to those in the know) is a "cracking run ashore"! (I remember it from my Navy days well).

Things to do and see in Gibraltar

If it is sightseeing you are after there are a number of mini bus tours all plying for your trade in Market Square and it's not a bad way to see the island actually. They will usually start by taking you out to Europa point where on a clear day you will have views out over North Africa and the Rif Mountains.

From here you will be taken up to St Michael's Caves. These caves have supposedly been home to all sorts of people over the years, however, one of the oldest inhabitants has to be that of a Neanderthal man, his skull is on display to this day!

After you have visited the caves you will exit to the obligatory souvenir and coffee shop, however look out for pickpockets... of the hairy kind! There are almost always some of the famous Barbary Macaque or more affectionately "Rock Apes" found here. A trip to Gib just isn't complete without seeing the apes. There are over 300 living on the rock and they can either be seen by taking a tour or by taking the cable car up the rock and stopping half way at the apes den.

They are also to be found at the top of the rock (which has some fantastic views!) but be warned they are VERY inquisitive and will try and steal anything that looks like it may contain food (this includes handbags!), don't be tempted to feed them as there is a £500 fine if caught. Also don't eat anywhere near them, their table manners aren't as refined as ours and they will snatch!

Other things to look out for are the great siege tunnels, dug by hand in 1781 and taking two years to complete they provided high level defence embrasures giving canon cover over what is now the airport and runway. There is much more to see and do in Gibraltar, I hope you and your family enjoy your trip.

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Visiting Gibraltar


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