We are situated in La Janda District (Cadiz province in Andalucia) blessed with an average of 300 sunny days per year. The bright sunlight is intensified as it is reflected from the expanses of golden sand, giving the coast its name “The Coast of Light”. We live in the heart of the country in a charming rural home. The house is surrounded by trees and overlooking the coast and surrounding countryside. We share the land with our 2 cats, hen and our Wakeup2English emblematic cockerel! We have the beaches of Zahora nearby (a 10-15 minute drive away), the La Breña Natural Park (a 5 minute drive) and the historic white village of Vejer (also a 5 minute drive). Vejer is an award-winning typical white-washed village, renowned for its beauty and traditional charm.
I had trained as a secondary school teacher, but after taking a year out to travel extensively, I decided that I wasn´t quite ready to settle down in the UK. When my ex -partner, David, and I arrived in Spain for the first time, our initial plan was to get TEFL posts for 6 months and then head off to Japan. On discovering the Costa de la Luz and a rambling farm-house to stay in, our plans changed. The way of life was very traditional compared to London, but we were allured by its simplicity and the rich local culture. We realized that we didn´t want to leave just yet and managed to find work in Tarifa, Barbate, Vejer and Conil. We bought a piece of land near Vejer and set about building our own home with local materials, we sank our own well and installed a solar system to generate electricity.
Over the years I have seen many changes in the area. Vejer was a quaint little town with not much going on. With the growing awareness of its potential, both locals and outsiders have invested in it, making it the charming, attractive and vibrant "pueblo blanco" that we see today. There is even a cosmopolitan presence here, as many dynamic individuals from all over the world have decided to move to the area and set up little businesses in catering, leisure, music and entertainment.
I feel very much a part of the life here. I moved around a great deal when I was a child in the UK, but Vejer feels like home and I can´t imagine myself anywhere else!
I was looking to move to Spain from England for a more relaxed way of life in the early 2000's. I checked out Valencia, Almeria and Granada but a chance visit to Vejer made my mind up to stay as I immediately fell in love with the area around Plaza de España. I bought a house and renovated it (it was minutes from the Plaza) and almost immediately went to Morocco and bought and restored a tumble-down riad there as well.
My Moroccan adventure lasted three years and on my return I met Jane and we had a beautiful daughter that I dedicated my life to, and from then on in I never envisaged living anywhere else. Vejer offers us a relaxed, sunny lifestyle, we feel part of a local and extended family of expats from all over the world. Plus, it's great for kids to enjoy the countryside and beaches on our doorstep. We feel lucky to have grown up with the town, as it looks to modernize whilst still keeping its historical roots, culture and traditions firmly in place.