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Matthew Hirtes

Author, blogger, and travel writer, residing in totally tropical Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

Author, blogger, and travel writer, residing in totally tropical Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

The A-Z of Spanish Culture: Beyond Toros and Flamenco by Pilar Orti, a Review

Considering myself to be a reasonably well-read connoisseur of Spanish literature, I looked forward to "Q is for Quixote: Great classic writers." With good reason, as it turned out. Yet I discovered that I didn't know quite as much about Spain's literary world as I thought with Orti introducing me to some authors I'd never heard of.
27/02/2015 13:04 GMT

How to Live in Denmark by Kay Xander Mellish, a Review

Denmark and Gran Canaria are both pretty insular. On Gran Canaria, the gene pool's more of a dipping pond. Mellish refers to the blue-eyed boys and girls of monoculture Denmark where between 5 and 10 percent of the population aren't derived from Danish stock.
22/09/2014 12:41 BST

Explore Metropolitan Gran Canaria With Mr Gran Canaria Local

The Canary Islands are not famous for their cities. With good reason, generally. Although there are exceptions to the rule, however. One thinks of Tenerife's San Cristóbal de Laguna, for example, which you'll fall for on first sight.
18/08/2014 15:03 BST

How to Discover the Great Outdoors on Gran Canaria

When you tell people you live on Gran Canaria, they immediately think you're sunning yourself on a beach 24/7. But whilst we might live on a holiday island, we've still got to work to earn a living. Plus there's interesting turf to match GC's surf. A great outdoors to explore at our leisure.
11/08/2014 16:02 BST

Conversations With Spirits by E O Higgins, a Review

Edward alluded to a Smog-era London, where we'd brave an old, grey peasouper engulfing the capital to meet up at a secret hostelry of a venue. The true destination was a more prosaic Covent Garden chain boozer, but I much preferred Higgins' mythical version.
17/03/2014 12:44 GMT

It's Business Time on Gran Canaria

If you've ever read any of my back catalogue, you probably won't have me pegged as a business traveller. Check the profile pic if my work's totally new to you. Yes, I've got an economy-class mugshot, haven't I?
07/03/2014 09:21 GMT

Tenerife, Loving My Neighbour

There's little love lost between the neighbouring islands of Gran Canaria and Tenerife. If you want any evidence of this, go along to a derby between rivals UD Las Palmas and CD Tenerife.
12/02/2014 13:05 GMT

Arribes: Everything Else Is Noise

Arribes: Everything Else Is Noise focuses on the Arribes del Duero region within the province of Castilla y León. This is Spain's north-west and it's every bit as gritty as NW England, mirroring the hard-knock life experienced by inner-city Manchester and Liverpool residents. Except the setting is rural rather than urban.
13/06/2013 12:30 BST

Portugal's South Central, The Alentejo

The Alentejo stretches from the southern banks of the mighty Tejo river to the northern mountains of the Algarve. It's a land of myth; of mystery. Which feels more Moorish then Portuguese; more Al-Andaluz than Andalucia. As I further discover as we drive to the starting point of the hike the following morning.
10/06/2013 13:29 BST

Sevilla Mia

Orange trees are not the only fauna in greener-than-you'd-think Seville. Indeed, Andalucía has many stunning parks and gardens
14/03/2013 15:33 GMT