6:30am and we were up, ready and waiting in the cool summer breeze for our tour bus to arrive. We watched as other tourists boarded their transport for their day’s journey. When the bus pulled up at our pre arranged meeting point, we hopped on and enquired if it was for the Gibraltar trip. The driver confirmed it was, so we made ourselves comfortable for the long journey ahead.
20 minutes into the Journey the tour guide strolls over and asks us for our tickets, as we hand them over he gives us a funny look and asks if we speak Polish. We explained that no we don’t speak Polish, we speak English. He then tells us he will be back in a minute. At this point we started to sense something might not be right. Once he came back he explained that we were on the wrong bus; we had boarded the Polish tour bus. Great we were now in for a 3-and-a-half-hour journey where the tour would all be in a language we didn’t speak! He told us not to worry though as we would be able to pick up our tour bus once we arrived in Gibraltar.
After a very long 3 and a half hours, where we listened to the guide giving what seemed to be a very interesting talk in Polish, we arrived in Gibraltar. Just as we were wondering where our tour bus might be, we were in for more bad news! So now it turned out the tour bus that we were meant to be picking up in Gibraltar, was running 2 hours behind! The Polish tour guide quickly waved goodbye as they left us at the bus station to wait. We decided we wouldn’t let our unfortunate start ruin our trip, we had come all this way, so we may as well go explore the town and come back in 2 hours.
After we navigated our way successfully into the centre, we were not disappointed, it was very quaint and beautiful. The day was starting to look up, we took a wander around the shops which were all tax free (I was in heaven) and came away with many a bargain. The strangest part was paying in Pounds again rather than Euro’s.
After shopping we had worked up an appetite, so we took a stroll down to the market square and sat outside one of the little idyallic cafes. It was just what we needed after a long eventful morning; two cold drinks later, a caser salad and club sandwich we were both happily full.
It was now nearly 12pm so we thought we had better wander back up to the bus station as we didn’t want to miss our bus for the second time that day! Lucky for us we manged to find our tour guide this time.
We then boarded the little tour bus that would take us up Gibraltar rock, unfortunately for us we weren’t sat together or maybe Thomas thought it was fortunate.
First stop on the way up the rock was Europa Point; here you could see Gibraltar straight, and on a less cloudy day out over to Africa.
Back on the bus and we were off again up to St Michaels Cave; if your anything like me and you don’t like heights, you don’t want to be looking down on the way up (I don’t think the gentleman beside me appreciated me nearly grabbing his hand in fear!).
The limestone caves were stunning and well worth a visit. Whilst we were there they were setting up for a show, so we couldn’t appreciate the full affect but they were still worth it.
As we came out the cave we met the famous rock Apes. As we love these creatures so much we couldn’t resist a cheeky photo opportunity. As we took pictures one of the Apes jumped onto a tourists back, stole the banana she was just about to eat and ran off; so we wouldn’t advise having food up here unless you want to share it.
From the rock the view out over Gibraltar was amazing.
Back on the bus and now heading down; the tour guide informed us of the history of Gibraltar (in English this time). He also talked about how the Apes could be treated in the same hospital as the people of Gibraltar, which is just amazing.
Once off the bus we had some more shopping time. Having already been shopping, we used the opportunity to go discover some more sights around the city and wander further off the beaten track onto some of the smaller cobbled side streets.
A couple hours later and we were back on the bus and starting the long journey back to the hotel (I spent most of this time desperate for the toilet after the copious amounts of water I drank, not a clever move!).
Overall Gibraltar was beautiful; the shopping and the tour of the rock were most certainly the highlights of our trip. In the end getting on the wrong tour bus worked out a treat for us as we got longer in this wonderful place; even if we did miss out on what was being said in the morning, which we are sure must have been very informative and interesting as the other tourists nodded and laughed along.