The new Málaga by-pass, A7 – west to east

The last time we set off down the N340/A7/goodness-knows-how-many-other-names-it-has down to gin, it looked as though the new by-pass around Málaga was finally open.

Either way we missed it.  And trotted happily off down the usual old city by-pass route (opened nearly 20 years ago in 1992) which is pretty quiet on a Sunday anyway.

But coming back up from Gib a couple of weeks ago we decided to go for it.

Yes, the by-pass of the Málaga by-pass finally opened at the end of October.  A press release from 2008 says it was due to cost more than 83M euros for 4kms.  That’s roughly 21M euros per kilometre. Think we travelled more than 4kms too.  Guess it cost more than 83M in the end. Link here.

Wait.  I have found something slightly more up-to-date and accurate.  We are now looking at a total cost of 339M euros for 21.3kms.  Ah, that’s more like it. Thanks Costa del Sol News – more info here.

Anyway.  It was good.  It’s not a toll road, at places there are four lanes, and right now, it is not overly used.  Not at weekends anyway.  And there are some cracking views, although, it is hard in Andalucía not to have cracking views.

If you are heading east, follow the signs for Almería. There is also less lane-swapping for that route, so it is a good thing all round.

Some pix.

Heading off on the new road..

One of the last parts of the by-pass to be completed was the 1.25k Churriana tunnel.

Entrance to the tunnel

Graffiti artists are in there as fast as they can

Looking towards the airport, the new road runs well north

And, with Málaga behind us, heading for the hills of the Axarquía

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Random photos

We haven’t been entirely idle in our summer absence, so here for starters are some photos of random Land Rovers shot around Gib. Some are kitted out for expeditions with some interesting adaptations and good-looking gear.

First up, an exped vehicle.

Next an early county. Always fancied one of these when I was younger.

Another well kitted out exped Landy. Nice awning, good sand ladders, safety grilles for windows, to name but a few features.

OK, so not a Landy but a very tidy looking winch.

And to finish with, a couple of shots of the new Defender which has been gracing the windows of a local LR dealer over the summer.

Camping in Spain …. and Land Rovers

Camping is fine in Spain.

In winter the place is full of Northern Europeans in campervans/motorhomes. A lot of the coastal campsites are chocka, but many people prefer to wild camp by the beach.

Partly for cost, but partly because it’s nice.

Summer is a pain because it is full of noisy families, and the staff on camp sites can’t keep up to the cleaning fast enough.

Anyway we splashed out on our first “proper” holiday in five years and paid for a camp site. I nearly died – 35Euros!!!! A night!!!!! And that was charging us for a small tent. Since when have the prices gone up so much?

You can still get a hotel for that price, although admittedly it won’t be set in the midst of idyllic woodland where you can sit outside all day enjoying the peace and tranquility.

Nor will your Excitable Land Rover Partner go round every French person on site who he sees in a Land Rover asking them where they have been and discussing riveting things like parabolic springs.

He was very happy that all the Land Rovers he saw entering the site came to park next to us. Our own little colony of Land Rovers.

Never let it be said the French aren’t polite though. The guy opposite with a Defender was happily setting off for the toilet in the morning – quite clearly clutching his toilet roll – when Excitable Land Rover Partner collared him to discuss tyres and springs.

Did Adrian notice the toilet roll? No. Did the French guy stand there patiently when he quite clearly wanted to be somewhere else? Yes.

I did have a quiet word with Adrian when I could stop laughing, but it won’t be of any use. If he wants to talk about Land Rovers with someone he would probably follow them down to the toilet block if necessary. And back. Without pausing for breath.