Situated on the southernmost tip of the Iberian Peninsula as well as across the bay of Algeciras and out my bedroom window is Gibraltar. Gibraltar is a U.K. territory and the Gibraltarian people are a racial and cultural fusion of mixed descent: Genoese, Maltese, Portugese and Andalusian. The majority are bilingual and speak both British English as well as Andalusian Spanish, as well as Llanito, an eclectic vernacular only spoken in Gibraltar that is more or less “Spanglish.”
Last weekend I took the bus out to “Gib” to spend the day and play tourist…complete with sneaking in photos with the red telephone booths. The walk through the town’s winding streets spontaneously turned into a 3+ hour hike in scorching summer-like weather to the top of the rock to see the famed Gibraltarian Barbary Macaques; Europe’s only primates. They’re ridiculously cute, (though prone to snatching bags and biting people!) but seeing them made the sweaty trek worthwhile. Not to mention, the top of the rock offers a stunning view of both Europe and Africa…it was breathtakingly beautiful.
Afterward, I climbed back down the rock, enjoyed dinner in the city center, then walked around the harbor, which is full of cute shops, pubs and restaurants. I caught a gorgeous sunset on the way across the border, walked around for awhile in La Linea (Spanish border town) and caught the bus back home.