Our first nights stay in Spain was at an Aire in Algapski, but it was not our first choice. I remember the drive from France being a nice one, because it was an up and over type run and the scenery was very green and lush most of the time.
We had entered Spain on a Sunday and our first choice of stay was over-run by people making Baroque's and there was nowhere to park, It had taken us ages to find this location and we were very unhappy at the thought of having to find another. We looked in the Aires book and found the nearest one to us and off we went again. When we arrived at the Aire there were three or four motorhomes already there, so we parked behind them in what space was available. There were large factory gates close by which I didn't like the look of, but the Aire was nice and peaceful.
We woke early the next morning to the sound of factory gates being opened and closed with the workers parking their cars all around us. Our first experience of camping in Spain didn't get off to a good start. And it got worse.
Our next Aire selection from the book was in Olmedo, it was a long drive and we were running from black storm clouds all day. The route took us across flat plains that were pretty boring, and when we arrived we found the Aire to be very noisy and worse still there were 2 large refuse bins on the Aire and the flies were unbearable, so we decided to move on again and try and make Portugal before night fall. It was a very long drive that day.
Our trip through Portugal can be seen HERE
Before leaving Portugal, we stayed once again on the Aire in Breganca. The next morning we headed north and at the end of a long winding road we entered into Spain and the town of Puebla de Sanabria. Here we got onto the A-52 and headed east towards Leon and Santander. In the early afternoon we stopped at a picnic area and took a break, and after our lunch I turned the ignition key to find we had no oil in the engine.
It was at this point in time I found we had no European breakdown recovery. I phoned the emergency services and asked for a breakdown lorry and it was soon with us. He wanted €700 to take us to Santander, but I didn't want to spend that sort of money with him and got him to take us to the nearest service area where I could buy lots of oil.
By stopping every 30 miles or so and topping up with oil, we limped into Santander to catch the ferry, The journey took us through some stunning scenery but we were in no mood to appreciate it
When we did eventually find the Ferry Port Entrance the gates were closed, but we could see the ferry sitting there. As I was turning around a man came running out and asked if we wanted the ferry (strange question to ask), YES PLEASE we said.
We were processed in double quick time and we were the very last to board the ferry. It wasn't until a little later that we found out which port the ship was heading for, fortunately it was Portsmouth.
Back in Portsmouth at 11:30pm I called Green Flag and they gave us a car and we drove home, Myrtle followed about a week later.