"Yeah, I can totally drive a car with manual transmission," said my travel companion.
Barreling down the winding roads of the Parque de Picos de Europa, narrowly missing hikers and passersby, I realize that statement couldn’t be further from the truth. The curvy, traffic laden park was not the ideal place for my partner to be trying his hand at stick shifting learned from Youtube the previous night. Afraid of stopping on the inclined road or even slowing down, he cursed the tourists slowly shuffling across the street and honked at those pulling over to snap a few photos; hikers, cars, children, the elderly, cows and any other creature in the park that day were all unknowingly in harm’s way. A few white-knuckled hours later we finished our ascent and arrived at the Lagos de Covadonga. The Lagos de Covadonga include two glacier lakes nestled among mountain peaks. Cows wearing bells of various tunes graze alongside the pristine mountain lakes, to add to the picturesqueness. Overall, I would recommend visiting the Picos de Europa Park; the stunning scenery and short hikes around the lakes were worth the harrowing drive. Although, previous manual shifting experience is encouraged and highly recommended!