The sun was rising in the blue sky but there was a fresh breeze.
We’d wandered along the well-appointed and cared-for promenade at Estepona.
And, thankfully, we’ve also strayed into the main shopping and café area.
We both felt that Estepona, with a population around 70,000, is one of the few coastal towns that has succeeded in maintaining its pueblo charm and character despite the onslaught of mass tourism.
Looking at the menus on the numerous street cafes and tapas bars it is evident that they still serve traditional Spanish delicacies.
We were particularly attracted to the ‘old town’ where the steep, narrow streets are pedestrianised and decorated with different colour flower pots.
Photographers, we felt, would enjoy the challenge of capturing the moment in pleasing-to-the-eye squares, but it was mid-morning and little had opened yet. It was also early-season.
However, we spied Tolone. It was busy with a number of tables occupied, and not just by tourists – a good sign – and it is on a corner near the eastern end of the beach.
We spotted a table sheltered from the breeze and we didn’t know it at the time, but reviews are positive.
Our table overlooked the sea but was tucked away from traffic. The main road is busy.
Within minutes the busy waiter arrived with the extensive menu. It’s a hard choice.
Pam plumped for coffee and a baguette with ham, cheese and crème cheese with herbs.
My pick was a straightforward croissant (warm) and PJ Tips tea. Yes, I know I should have been more adventurous, but a thirst-quenching cup of good old British tea was what I required a the time.
People came and went, including a trio of senior English gentlemen.
Our picks arrived and they were both worth the wait. The croissant was just right in texture and heat and the baguette was packed with flavour.
Toilets were clean and easy to find and the music was just to my liking, heavy metal goes down well providing it is not too loud.
You could not hear the music outside, by the way.
We watched the world go by for around an hour and made our way but do as we did, pay a visit. It is a good stopping-off point just yards from the beach,