A couple of weeks ago to celebrate the birthday of the missus I magnanimously agreed to close the Findmeahome office for the day, to forego Facebook, the Semi- final between Spain and Portugal and to really try to not mention football either.
Christine Eberhart runs unique.almeria which is an excellent business promoting all that Almeria Province has to offer. Search for the page on Facebook for some great ideas for getting out and about. Christine had posted an article about a bodega in the foothills of the Alpujarras in the village of Alboloduy; 30kms or so north of Almeria. She also mentioned a special spring that flowed from the nearby mountains to fill a small pool that could be visited at the same time.
What a lovely way to spend a day off; tasting and buying wine followed by a cooling dip in a mountain pool so we intrepid explorers set off to explore a part of Almeria that was previously unknown to us. With the hi tech temperature gadget in the car we could see the heat rising as we crossed the Tabernas Desert with the Western film sets in the distance, we crossed the A92 motorway to Gador and climbed into the mountains.
Alboloduy sits in a verdant steep sided valley with mountains towering above. Stupidly trusting the address I had found on the interweb we soon were stuck in a narrow dead end in the village. Swallowing my male pride, I asked a local and Bodega Alboloduy was soon found. The winery is run by Cristina Calvache and her father Paco, and they have won many awards for their wines. Paco invited us to look around and we tried 4 delicious wines buying a few of each of them. Leaving we swapped the coolness of the winery for the baking summer heat and we quickly walked to the eatery next door called Luis Pena.
The smiling owner and his daughter quickly us served ice cold beers and gave us tapas and wow what delicious food it was; roasted cod with ratatouille, delicious morcilla made in the village and melt in the mouth Serrano ham and all so cheap. Luckily as we left we bought a bottle of water.
The walk to the pool called Balsica Salobre started well, up a dry river bed in 40 degree or 104F in old money. Then an ominous wooden signpost pointed up at what looked like a sheer rock face. We sweated and toiled up the narrow and steep rocky path and after 20 minutes reached a veritable oasis perched high upon the mountain side.
A babbling brook runs down from the spring, running through a hollowed olive branch to drop its turquoise waters into a waist deep pool of translucent cool water. Stripping off we shared the pool with a couple of resident frogs and lent back on a submerged ledge to cool ourselves down for a few peaceful hours. The only other neighbours were a wild mountain goat and her kid who ran up the mountain to warily watch the intruders. Idyllic but best not done next time during a heat wave at the hottest time of the day!