Who hasn’t heard of “The Rock”?
We aren’t talking about the erstwhile star of The Mummy here; not you Dwayne…. but Gibraltar, fabled land of the indomitable British will pitted against the might of, well, basically everybody else.
A small pocket of determination, wrested from the Spanish in 1704 and held throughout every major conflict, including WW2.
Where to stay?
Accomodation in Gibraltar is expensive compared to Spain and as it is a 5 minute walk away why not stay in La Linea de la Concepcion. Where you can stay on the waterfront, with a harbour view for as little as 70 Euro/night. In a hotel with a pool, bar and breakfast included.
You will need your passport to cross the border, such as it is from Spain into Gibraltar but it really is a very casual affair. We simply flashed our documents as we went through at any time of the day or night. Not once we were stopped.
Where to eat and drink (and not)
Always apply the smart traveller's rule of "going back 2 streets" from the main tourist route before entering a bar or restaurant. It will save you money, the quality will be better and you should be able to avoid the annoying hordes, who don't know any better.
I've listed my favorite spots below, and the ones that you can give a miss.
The Aragon Bar
A tiny little pub, very English in nature with pretty good lunch meals including English favourites fish and chips, shepherds pie and mixed grill at a reasonable price. As well as pints of lager in a cute laneway heading down the hill. A nice spot to spend a couple of hours with a pint. Oh and free WIFI. Worth a visit!
If you want an enormous pizza with a crispy base, tasty toppings and lashings of cheese this is the place for you. And even better it's cheap, has good house wine and friendly staff. Highly recommended by 2 hungry and thirsty budget conscious travellers (us). Hint: do not get the large pizza, it could feed an invading army. MUST DO!
The Angry Friar
Perfectly located English style pub for a pint after you have climbed down the Rock, it does attract a few tourists though. The pints are reasonably priced, the staff friendly and whilst we didn't have a meal, they looked huge and pretty tasty. Typical English pub fare including Bangers and Mash. Worth a visit!
O'Reilly's Irish Bar
The Marina area is the tourist mecca of Gibraltar and the prices match it. We payed 20 pounds for two cocktails, in theory they were Cosmopolitans, in practice they were a watery, pink mess that tasted nothing like an alcoholic drink. We also waited 20 minutes for the privilege, on a not very busy Sunday evening. Give it a miss!
The Royal Calpe
If you are after a quiet early evening drink this might be ok but it was deserted at 7pm and at 8pm there were no meals to be had. During the day this place is full to the brim with tourists from the invading cruise ships. Avoid it unless you are staying across the road. Give it a miss!
Travel Photo Opportunity and Hint
If you want to capture a sunset like the one on this post, you have to sneak past the gate located near the Cuban Bar in the Marina area, down onto the floating pontoons. Pretend you are looking at buying a yacht and happily snap away.
Getting up and down the rock
Take the cable car up the rock as the walk would be a killer. Pay for the visits to the park as it worth it just to visit St Michael's Cave. There is no need to pre book, even in busy June we didn't wait.
Walk down the Rock, the paths are marked with colours and range from very easy to very adventurous. You will get some amazing photo opportunities and walk off the pints and pizza that you will need when you get to the bottom.
Travel tip shared by Possess the World