Friday, May 4, 2012

A taste of Aranjuez

May1st is the labor day for almost everywhere in the world, a notable exception being the US, but it was periodically pouring (much like today). It has been raining on every day that I had off of work for a while, with the exception of Wednesday (May 2nd is one of Madrid many municipal holidays). So DH and I finally got to visit Aranjuez. I have been told that you can see everything in an afternoon. I have no idea where these people got their information, or what they thought was the only important thing to see because I was there an afternoon, and we only got a taste of what Aranjuez had to offer.

Aranjuez is the last stop on one of the cercanías, the local train system of Madrid. When we got to town it was the early side of lunch time, 2pm so we decided to have a Spanish lunch (lots of food and takes about an hour or more) before we started exploring. A nice thing about May 2nd is that it is only a holiday for Madrid, no other providence has it, and Aranjuez is in Castle y la Mancha so there was no crowds.

The Palace at Aranjuez. We did not go in because it was such a nice day.

Look at the color of the river. I thought that color did not exist in nature, only in Disney. 

The plaza in front of the place, was a peaceful place.

The first part of the garden look almost to perfect to be real. It really felt like we were in a theme park. Maybe that feeling was due to be cooped up inside a city for too long? Just look at the palm tree!

Most of the "garden of the island" was very French with the boxwoods in geometrical shapes and the occasional fountain.

DH saw his first Spanish squirrel (a red squirrel) in a long time. They are hard to spot in Madrid.

We got some very expensive, but fresh and ripe berries from a stall outside on of the parks. There is more than one park in Aranjuez, and we saw most of just the small one.

Everywhere there were sign about asparagus and strawberries. It was the oddest combination. The stall where we bought the berries was selling both fresh, and I picture people walking down the street and into the park eating uncooked green asparagus.

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