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Approximately 4½ hours
This excursion takes you behind the scenes for an exclusive look at Spanish country life. The motor coach leaves the urban bustle of Málaga behind as it begins the ascent to an elevation of 1,500 feet. Your destination, Mijas, is a classical Malaguenan village, complete with strong accents of Andalusian flavor and wonderful views of the coast. On a clear day, you can see across to Morocco and Gibraltar. Cobblestone streets and charming, whitewashed houses are typical of this picturesque village. Of special interest is the completely unique square bullring dating back to Moorish times, and a charming chapel dedicated to Our Lady of the Rocks, hewn out of the hillside. Take in the sights and enjoy some free time to relax over coffee at one of the café terraces lining the sidewalks (at your own expense), or hire a donkey taxi for a ride through the quaint alleyways (also at your own expense). As an added treat, you will visit the Mayan Monkey chocolate factory, the smallest chocolate factory located in the center of Mijas.
You will start with a guided tour of the chocolate museum in which you learn about the fascinating origins of chocolate, including the key role of Spain in the history of chocolate, and also the process of turning cocoa into chocolate. The visit will be accompanied by a chocolate tasting (per person 1 filled bonbon and some pieces of foil chocolate) and wine (1 glass per person).
Then, you will go to the chocolate factory to mold, fill, seal and decorate chocolates from organic and ethically sourced chocolate (options: dark chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate, vegan milk chocolate).
The artisan fillings to choose from are many and varied. There is something for all tastes and dietary restrictions, chocolate soft nougat, chocolate tahini, hazelnut praline, peanut praline, pistachio praline, chocolate pumpkin seed cream, chocolate roasted sunflower seed cream, "dulce de leche", passion fruit caramel, gin and lemon caramel, red wine caramel, dark / milk / white chocolate ganache and also vegan chocolate ganache.
Some more free time gives you a chance to shop for some of the local arts and crafts—the ceramics and leather goods are of particularly notable quality—before you return to Málaga.
Please note: Wear comfortable walking shoes. This option is available to guests who are returning to the ship.