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Spain PortAventura & Ferrari Land with Darren, Marguerite & Claire

Spain- PortAventura & Ferrari Land

Our holiday had started as we made our way to PortAventura World theme park and everyone was anticipating lots of thrills on the hair raising roller coasters and rides. The park was beautifully decorated for Halloween, with giant, life like skeletons, spiders and pumpkins everywhere you looked.

 We toured the park moving into the Wild West and experienced a ride called Canyon Rapids, followed by the Silver River Flume. To say that we all got a little wet is probably an understatement! 

 There were plenty of screams to be heard on the Furius Baco, an incredibly fast roller coaster ride. We were super proud of ourselves for conquering this thrilling ride.
More thrill seeking was had on the huge traditional wooden framed roller coaster, Stampedo.

A relaxing day was spent on the beach. On the pleasant stroll to the sandy beach, we passed a variety of little boats selling their daily catch and people were queuing up already! We rented comfortable sun loungers for the day, then kicked back and relaxed, lapping up the warm sun. We couldn’t wait to head down to the water’s edge where the sea sparkled in the sunshine. 

We enjoyed a paddle in the sea and the braver amongst us had a swim in the refreshing water.

Making the most of the warm evenings, eating and drinking alfresco, we listened to the live bands performing traditional Spanish songs. The dancers were wonderful to watch, with amazing rhythm and flair. Some of us were even brave enough to show off our own dance moves.

A trip to Salou gave us the perfect chance to do some souvenir  shopping. We purchased some lovely items, such as beautiful bags, fashionable shoes and not to mention t shirts galore. A walk along the and we found a wonderful place for lunch with a view of the promenade and the beach.

Ocean Fly luxury catamaran was our vessel for the day. We were picked up and taken down to the harbour where we boarded our ship. Once settled on board we cruised slowly out to sea, hugging the stunning coastline of the Salou and Costa Dorada region, gently gliding over the clear blue waters. At lunchtime the captain dropped the anchor and everyone had the opportunity to swim.

Another action packed day at PortAventura and our first stop was Ferrari Land. Ferrari Land boasts the tallest and fastest roller coaster in Europe, with a speed of up to 112mph in 1.56 seconds and up to a vertical 367 ft peak. Great admiration for Beth and Phil who deserve a special mention, as they were the exceptionally courageous. The car enthusiasts among us seized the opportunity to photograph the incredible Ferrari cars that were on display, dotted around the park and visited the shop to pick up some mementos.  

We were all excited to go on the rides that we hadn't managed to try on the first visit. With great enthusiasm we walked to Polynesia and began our day with Tu Tuki Splash, an adrenaline pumping, water ride, that absolutely drenched everyone.

We could't resist a photo with the famous Sesame Street characters, Bert and Ernie. They were cheeky chappies! 

After our action packed days it was always nice to come back to our hotel for a relax in the warm Jacuzzi.

Partying the night away at The Lazy Wave karaoke bar where we got a chance to perform some of their favourite songs up on the stage. A special mention to Phil and Terence as they were both fantastic, and came first in a competition! The whole place clapped and cheered both gentlemen on, creating a great atmosphere.

When we weren't loop the looping or spinning around we topped up our tans on the sunbeds and practised our swimming in the fantastic hotel swimming pool. 

The Wonders of the Isle of Wight with Midi & Claire

The Wonders of the Isle of Wight

 With the sun peeking through the clouds we visited the iconic 'Needles' at Alum Bay. With such beautiful weather the view was absolutely stunning. 

Every night we were entertained by the lively music of the resident singers and band. We were treated to a night with Rod Stewart! The singer sounded and looked just like him. Another one of our favourite acts were The Livertones. A wonderful and innovative male trio singing Motown hits, that encompassed some smashing singing talents and harmonies, with clever choreographing and dance routine. The night finished with us all busting out our best dance moves on the floor and dancing the nights away. 

 We had great fun making our own sand ornaments, using the rainbow coloured sand found naturally on the Isle of Wight. We were very proud of our creations.

Our brave band of adventurers decided to descend the many steps down onto the beach in the bay below for a boat trip that sailed around the Needles. Wow! The white chalk cliffs out in the sea towered above us and they were certainly far more impressive up close. 

We watched a marvellous demonstration of glass blowing at the renowned glass factory. It was fascinating to watch the master craftsmen at work, creating beautiful glass ornaments. A sweet demonstration followed, where we were all treated to free samples of these tasty sweets that we had just watched being made. Rhubarb and Custard were everyone's favourites.

 Victoria Arcade, is a beautiful Grade II listed building, housing an array of interesting vintage shops. Within the bowels of this building was the unassuming 'Museum of Ryde', containing 200 years’ worth of history of Ryde. We explored the military rooms and tried on some of the uniforms, gazed at all of the pictures in the Victorian photography room, learnt lots in the schoolroom, and wondered at the story of the creation and development of the hovercraft, which all took place on the island.

 'Dinosaur Isle' at Yaverland, is the U.K.'s first ever purpose built dinosaur museum. We stepped into the prehistoric past with so many incredible facts and fossils to look at. There were real dinosaur bones reconstructed to illustrate what a dinosaur skeleton would have looked like, and fleshed out to make them terrifyingly realistic. We all absolutely loved the experience and were in awe at the sheer scale and bulk of these magnificent creatures.

Our sightseeing journey continued and we came to the quaint little village of Shanklin, with its many gorgeous chocolate box thatched cottages. The award winning 'Old Thatch Tearoom' was our destination for a fabulous lunch.Everyone relished the homemade scones with jam and clotted cream. Delicious!

An afternoon was spent at the fabulous Model Village in Godshill. The village shows Godshill and Shanklin as they appeared back in the 1930's. The detail of the miniature buildings, trees and people were astounding and we marvelled at the tiny world we had entered.