Which ever direction you approach Gibraltar, whether by sea or by land the towering rock dominates everything in sight. Its no wonder that men have fought so many battles to win this small piece of land.

The road from the Algarve passes through the ancient city of Seville and past the fortress of Cadiz. Finally as the road emerges from the mountains the rock seems to stand so close you could touch it. The illusion revealed its still 10 miles before you reach Las Lineas.. the lines, a reminder of when the Spanish batteries and troops laid siege to the rock.

You enter the city of Gibraltar across the runway built on the sand spit that joined British territory to the Spanish soil. And then it changes. Behind the massive white walls and revetments lies a city British in everything but its position and self government.

You could be in any busy market town within the United Kingdom. Its a place at which you can feel immediatly at home, even down to leaving the wife to go to Marks & Spencers whilst you head for a pint. Or dumping him out of the way whilst you go looking for bargains. Which ever.

But theres lots more to do as well. This is a place steeped in history. Visit the museum or the monkeys. the caves or the marina, there is far too much to see in one day, and that gaurentees you won’t be spoilt for choice. The trip to the top of the rock has to be the memorable high point in more ways than one.

After you’ve been mugged by the monkeys which are really apes you get a view never to be equalled. Africa seems close enough to pick the dates. Spain could be picked out of the azure blue sea.

Allow approx 6 hours drive from Portugal. There are also coach excursions that start early and give you a day exploring. Some car hire companies will let you take your car out of Portugal on payment of the charge for the green card insurance. In high season an air conditioned car is a good idea as the area south of Seville can be very hot.