Beach, road and golden mile.
Torrequebrada to Málaga. At last we escaped the worst of the resorts. Torremolinos was smaller and more tasteful than Fuengirola. We crossed the Guadalhorce river on a dual carriageway bridge and headed towards central Malaga along the beach.
We take the Málaga bus from Estepona which stops in Fuengirola. This saves us an hour. Then we get our connection to Torrequebrada. I have a premonition that we will overshoot and we do. There are no features to make the stop obvious and you don't see the casino sign until you have gone past.
We walk back to where we got off yesterday - only five minutes luckily and then work our way down some steps and over a wall on to the beach. My feet are wet almost instantly because I fail to observe a bigger wave than usual coming in. I'm glad I decided to make my socks do one more day. Neil is still a bit off colour and the offshoot of this is that I can keep up with him and get as many stops as I want. Last night we didn't go The Vine's (sic) as planned because Neil had bloat and couldn't face it. Mini said I was to cut Neil back and not encourage him to eat more. I will reduce the roll size - maybe. Eventually we get to Benalmadina harbour where we have a break.
None of the harbours comes close to Puerto Banus for gin palaces. We stay close to the beach mainly on the marine parade until we get close to the airport. Here we head inland because we need to find a bridge over the river Guadalhorce. By doing this, we find a good lunch place under some tamarisks and in sight of a colony of nesting bee-eaters. Later we saw their nests which were in a little ditch remarkably low down. This was a surprise as I thought they liked a sandy cliff. We found a way out of the sandy heath through a hole in the netting and then followed the motorway using side roads until we got close to the river. Here, because we were not allowed to use the road bridge, we turned left using an access roundabout and made our way through an industrial estate to the next dual carriage way where we were able to cross although whether legitimately or not we don't know.
Once over the bridge, we turned right and went along the bank of the river towards the sea. There are no longer any storks' nests. They obviously prefer the Atlantic climate. Eventually by heading through the suburbs, we reach the sea once more and again follow the marine parade until we get to Málaga Harbour which is able to cater for large ships. Here we turn inland and soon pick up a sign to the bus station. By using a combination of Neil's GPS and people wheeling suitcases, we locate the bus station and get our tickets back to Estepona on the 16.15 bus as we had planned. This meant that our return ride was only two hours long even though we had a journey that was further in disrance. We stopped only in the main town centres.
The beach sand is prarn (brown) and was being topped up as we entered Malaga. When I was in Mijas with Mini all those years ago, I remember brown shingle. Torremolinos and Benalmadena seemed smartened up but Fuengirola remains seedy and rundown looking - like Yarmouth, Neil said although he thought Yarmouth might be more cosmopolitan with fewer purely English outlets.
We saw a car crash on bridge and a motorbike crash in a suburb reminding us that we are now in an area of high population and traffic density.