2017-07-25 Sant Carles Marina, Sant Carles de la Rapita, Spain

This morning Graham and Elizabeth who are boat owners from England call aboard for coffee and a look through the Tangaroa. They keep their own boat in the Sant Carles Marina and were in the process of preparing for their return to England
Once again, Ric and I decide to keep the car longer and  go sightseeing for the day, as the part we were waiting for the boat had not arrived
We head off through Sant Carles de la Rapita and make our way north to the highway near the coast which will take us to to the town of Tarragona
We first pass the Delta D’Ebro which is a large producer if rice (7000 acres of rice is planted here)
Interesting building
Again we pass these unusual flat topped trees for sale which we were told were quite expensive to buy
We pass a line of elevator cranes with baskets
…..and a rugged mountain range
After an hour of travelling Tarragona appeared in the distance
We arrive in Tarragona ( Tarraco being an ancient name) which is a port city just south of Barcelona on the Costa Dorada
We drive up the elegant main road from the north of the town
Lovely homes stand side by side along the tree lined avenue
We head towards the main tourist area of Tarragona
Tarragona with a population of around 135,000 is a busy tourist town with many ancient sites including a Roman amphitheater
Once we had parked the car in the convenient underground car park, when we surfaced by elevator we came out by Plaça de la Font with the Tarragona city hall at the end of the large square
After inquiring where the information center was situated, we made our way up an adjacent street nearby and turned left as instructed
The street with the info center was a busy one as there we many tourists making their way to the large church which one could see at the end of the street
Collecting a couple of brochures from the Information Center we made our way up to the splendid looking Tarragona Cathedral
The large Romanesque & Gothic cathedral has striking stained glass, vaulted cloisters & an art museum
The simple however elegant interior of the cathedral
We visit the cloisters of the cathedral
……….and then the gardens of the cloisters

We found the cathedral museum very interesting

Now it was time for Ric to have his ice cream
One could get lost wandering around the many attractive narrow streets in Tarragona
We next visit the ancient Roman walls in Forum Square
One of the many striking buildings in Tarragona
An interesting Tarragonan home
Next we climb the ancient Roman Tower
Fabulous views over the Mediterranean from here
We enter the museum
This is certainly a substantial ancient Roman column on display
From the rooftop of the building we could see the Roman amphitheater
………….the remains of the city wall
……..the large hotel/casino complex
……….the northern coastline
……….and views over the houses of Tarragona
A third floor apartment with an amazing uninterrupted view over the Roman Amphitheater
The rooftop with the views
We head back into the museum
An amazing sculpture in white marble of a woman dating back to between the 1st and 2nd centuries
The incredible underground passage below an old building which was used for horse and chariot racing in ancient times
The Roman circus, as painted on the side of this building, was a hippodrome built to stage chariot races, theater and circus. The structure dates back to the first century AD and was 350 m long by 115 m wide with a seating capacity for 30,000 spectators. Most of the circus now lies hidden beneath the medieval city center and all that remains are sections of the walls and some of the tunnels which originally gave access to the stands but now run beneath the surrounding streets and buildings of the city center.
We finally arrive at the Roman Amphitheater
Looking south along the coast
We head down into the center of the amphitheater
One of the large entrances to the amphitheater

After our visit to the Roman Amphitheater we make our way back to the Plaça de la Font passing the ancient ruins of the city walls on the way
We visit the Tarragona city hall in Plaça de la Font
This was the only room one could visit in the City Hall
The attractive buildings of Plaça de la Font
Numerous shops, restaurants and bars line both sides of Plaça de la Font

Good shopping in Tarragona
Ric and I stop for a refreshing drink in the square before making our return
After a wonderful day of sightseeing in Tarragona we head back to Sant Carles de la Rapita
Once we arrived back in town we thought we would try the Cal Manu restaurant which rated quite well on Trip Adviser
The very friendly Spanish owner of the restaurant, Angels, who speaks fluent English, happened to be born on the same day as our own daughter!! What an amazing connection!!
We order a bottle of wine which shares the same name as Angels’s mother (who also shares the same birthday as our granddaughter)!!
Angels insists we try their fabulous roast potatoes, which were absolutely delicious
Next we have a generous serve of grilled aubergine served with honey which were also fabulous
Then came the large portion of wonderful grilled octopus however we decided to take most home in a doggy bag for lunch the following day!!
We kept room for the delicious bowl of beautifully cooked fresh mussels
When we were almost finished our dinner, a group of guys arrived at the next table for a boys night out!! When they got their cameras out Ric, as usual offered to be the photographer!!


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