Well, OK, I can help myself.
I just don't want to.
I took a walk to Sohail Castle Saturday at 7 p.m. It's about a 4-km (2.5-mile) walk, the last quarter mile up the steep castle hill. It was a warm evening and I walked at a comfortable pace, arriving at the top about 45 minutes later. The highly touted (by a Costa del Sol tourist newspaper and by Fuengirola's Department of Tourism and Events) Medieval Market opened Friday night.
From my perspective the only things "Medieval" about this market were the location (a 10th-century castle), the pseudo-Medieval costumes, and some of the decorations. And I suppose that would have been just fine with me if it hadn't been for the hype. There were many vendors, inside and outside the castle walls, selling the same things I've seen at every fair/market in Sevilla and Málaga — and right down the street last week at the little summer market near our house.
|STEPPING INTO THE PAST?|
I suppose my opinion wasn't helped any when, upon entering the castle, the first tent I saw contained a collection of captive owls (no rescue organization or zoo identified). For 3 euros, you could have your picture taken with whichever owl you chose. The Great Horned looked right into my eyes as if to say, "Don't even think about it!" I wouldn't have anyway.
|PERHAPS SOME MEDIEVAL COTTON CANDY FOR OUR STROLL BACK IN TIME.|
There was a little archery tent where kids (with careful management — and a little cash, of course) could shoot an arrow into a target.
So the market and fair weren't much different in content from other markets and fairs I've visited. But to be less unkind, it was a very nice market and fair. The location and views are stunning. The layout made it fun to walk around. There were plenty of places to eat (and drink) and plenty of places to sit and relax. And I'm sure it was a great place to party at night (hours were 7 p.m. to 2 a.m.).
So, despite the sarcasm, it was worth seeing and I'm glad I went. I just think the newspaper may have over-stated it when they reported: "the Market is considered one of the most important in Spain," and is like "entering a time tunnel that takes us back to the past."
The biggest surprise for me were the number of bars specializing in Mojitos and Caipirinhas. I had no idea these went back to Medieval times... (They don't, really.) I was tempted to order one (or the other) at the bar that claimed to have the best. But I was without my Medieval charger, palfrey, or packhorse (or my Medieval ass for that matter) and it was a long walk home.
|LOTS OF MEAT...|
|MORE BOOTHS OUTSIDE THE CASTLE WALLS.|
|VIKING INVADERS HEADING ONTO THE FOOD TERRACE FOR SOME MEAT... AND MOJITOS.|
|ROSES MADE OF WOOD. BEAUTIFULLY DONE.|
|CHOCOLATE!!! A VENDOR IN MEDIEVAL AFRICAN PATTERN AND CROCS FOOTWEAR.|
|A ROOM WITH A VIEW... AND SWEET CREPES AND PASTRIES.|
|LOTS OF ORIGINAL MEDIEVAL GOODS.|
(INCLUDING A FABRIC MONKEY BACKPACK AND NATIVE AMERICAN DREAM CATCHERS.)
|APPARENTLY, MOJITOS AND CAIPIRINHAS WERE VERY POPULAR WAY BACK WHEN.|
|RETURNING TO MODERN TIMES.|
|NUT-SELLER (RIGHT) ON AN AUTHENTIC CELL PHONE.|