Sagunto fortress

Since we want a quiet day, we plan only small activities. Gemma tells us about a cave with an underground river that you can visit by boat. She also gives us the name of a guide for Sagunto castle. We ask her to call and set up a tour for this evening.

The visit of the cave is a bit weird. The place is full of senior tourists and themed restaurants and bars. The staff of the boat trip are (with one exception) of pension age. Nobody speaks English, so we don’t understand much of the explanation (except when they say ‘Attencion a la cabesa’ or something, when you have to duck to avoid stalactites) but the cave itself is wonderful. There’s 800 m of navigable water and a small walk at the end as well. We’ve visited caves before, but never have been so close to the ceiling. Unfortunately it’s not allowed to take pictures. There’s corny music playing, but the water softens all the sounds, so it doesn’t sound like you’re in a cave. After the visit we’re kind of tired so we decide to hang out at the pool at the B&B until it’s time for the visit to Sagunto.

We do some further organizing for next week: when is the zoo open, where do we want to bike in Valencia, can we do the kayak in the Ebre Delta, ..

After successful hanging and a short hop to Sagunto by car, we meet up with Ramón and walk up to the castle. Our guide is a fount of information, mainly about the construction and military history of the fort. The castle is 1 km long and impossible to fit into a picture. You can see remains of Iberic (pre-roman tribes), Roman, medieval and Moorish parts, plus renovations from the Spanish defense against Napoleon, French renovations after they captured it (still Napoleon) and more recent renovations for security reasons. The history is visible in the stones.

We ask so many questions that suddenly Ramón panics and says that they will close the castle in a minute. He runs to the entrance and is just able to stop the guard from locking us in. he recommends a tapas bar nearby, where we find one of the last available spots outside. It seems to be a very popular place for locals. Since the restaurants are not yet open for dinner, we simply have so many tapas so that we don’t need dinner.

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