A few years ago we were invited to La Herradura by my husband’s brother and his wife. They had bought a house in the town and were very generously inviting their family to come and visit. We were happy to accept, and looked forward to a week of sunny and warm days in strong contrast to our typical Norwegian summer, with temperatures on average between 15 and 20 degrees maximum.
The taxi stopped at the corner of Calle Real and Calle Las Morenas. We then made our way to Calles San Ramon. Wow! We were in the middle of the old village! Surrounded by Spanish residents where my husband’s brother and sister-in-law were living in a typical Spanish home. How cool was that? Before this, our experience of Spain was spending our holidays in typical holiday resorts such as Mallorca or The Canary Islands. We’re talking big hotel complexes – rows and rows of identical holiday apartments, drinks with umbrellas in them and our fellow holiday makers fellow Norwegians, Scandinavians and other nationalities. Not a Spaniard in sight.
I’m fascinated how foreign tourists actually find La Herradura. There doesn’t seem to be anything written about the village in the typical tourist brochures. My husband’s family was looking for a place to settle down when they reached retirement. As they had worked in Spain as travel guides many years ago, they knew they preferred Andalucia particularly for its warm climate and the health benefits that brings.
One day, whilst driving around in Andalucía and visiting various interesting places, they got so fed up with the GPS lady, they threw her in the back of the car and drove in the opposite direction. That’s how they ended up in La Herradura!
We truly enjoyed every minute of our first stay and fell in love with the little village immediately. Slowly we discovered the beach, the restaurants, the people, the food market, the music and the guitars! The day we left, our neighbours were having a private party with their family. We heard singing and clapping and it was as if we were part of a Spanish fairytale. But of course, La Herradura is for real!
We came home with a mobile phone full of photographs – wonderful memories and pictures of nature and exciting houses. We found one house in particular very interesting and it became our symbol of La Herradura. We printed that picture and looked at it almost every day as a reminder of our extraordinary trip. We did not know it then, but that house with the blue door would one day end up being ours. And now we are here in La Herradura – all thanks to my husband’s brother and wife and that annoying GPS lady.
Article written by Wenche Gulliksen from Norway