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Guadarranque reservoir
11/15/2010, Castellar di Castillo

A stunning view from the fortress.

Cork trees
11/15/2010, Casteller De Castillo

The main industries in the area were and largely still are agriculture and producing cork with other employment coming with the advent of the reservoir in 1960. Here is a picture of one of the cork-producing trees beside the path up to the fortress.

Casteller de Castillo
11/15/2010, La Linea Spain

We took Jack up into the hills one afternoon by car to visit the hilltop village of Castillo de Casteller. The final part of the journey was along a steep, winding single track road and luckily we only met a couple of other cars. Steve has had a lot of experience driving through mountainous regions in the Alps, Vosges and Pyrenees on holiday years ago so he was ok but glad when we arrived. Unfortunately the driver never gets to see all the spectacular scenery as they have their eyes on the road - thank goodness. However there were still beautiful views from the top, especially from inside the walls.

The site is unusual as the fortress and village were built in the 12-15th century on the walls of the original ancient Arab fortress. It appears that the castle was more administrative rather than defensive. In the latter part of the 20th century the government undertook its restoration as it had fallen into neglect.

By 1971 nearly all the original local families had moved to Nuevo Casteller with its superior modern amenities leaving a few locals, holiday home owners and, as a couple of the websites say, "ageing hippies or bohemian types"!

There is evidence of Prehistoric settlements and Bronze age settlements and there are cave drawings to be found in the area.

On top of the rock
11/12/2010, Gibraltar

Highest spot on the Rock

11/12/2010, Gibraltar

Me outside the visitors centre.

The top of the Rock
11/12/2010, Gibraltar

My uncle visited so I took him up on the cable car to the top of the Rock. On the way up the car operator warns you not to feed the Barbary Apes. The view was fantastic and I took lots of photos though we only saw 2 or 3 apes but one of them gave an impressive acrobatic performance on the stairway while I was visiting the ladies - typical!

After the visit we had a great seafood pizza and dessert at Mama Mia at the bottom of the cable car station. We heard from a couple who were at the visitors centre when we were that a mother had been bitten by an ape when she tried to retrieve her toddler's comforter and instead of going to get treated she had stayed and allowed the child to pet a juvenile ape which promptly bit her.

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