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Now is the time to drop everything that you’re doing right now and plan a holiday in Spain.
From the hidden coves and beaches that seem to be everywhere along the Mediterranean coast to the luxurious resorts of the Atlantic coast, there are plenty of mountains for you to explore between those two beautiful points.
There are some fascinating points of interest in Spain that make it truly unique. Did you know that there are Egyptian temples to explore in the country? Or some of the finest Roman ruins that are still used for performances? Even the oldest restaurant in the world today is in this nation.
No matter what city you choose to visit in Spain, you simply must plan for a summer holiday at some point. Almost every community offers a unique fiesta that will become one of the best parties of your life. Forget throwing tomatoes or running with the bulls. Go throw some meringue with thousands of others, attend an all-night folk dance, and then beg forgiveness if you must in the 1,000 year old temples, cathedrals, and mosques that dot the landscape.
Maybe the best part of Spain, however, is that there is something to discover no matter where you are. It could be a secluded beach, an unreviewed restaurant, or the best bottle of wine you’ve ever had. Spain is beautiful and offers you the perfect chance to get away from the rest of the world for as long as you need. Get started on your journey today and who knows what you’ll discover!
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Regions of Spain
In the northern part of the country, there are coastal resorts and quaint fishing villages. These will give you a taste of authentic Spanish life in a small village. Some areas, such as La Rioja are known for wine production. You will get to experience the culture more than you would in a large city that is a tourist attraction.
You get the chance to experience history by visiting ancient monasteries and viewing cave paintings. In this area, you can also experience nature. The Pyrenees mountains form the natural border along the northernmost part of the country with France. You can take walking and hiking tours here.
Madrid is the best known city in the Central part of the country. This city is the capital and is filled with things to do. The central part of the map is also where you will find many ancient towns with historical landmarks and places to visit.
The central part of the country consists of plains divided by mountain chains. The Sierra de Guadarrama, Sierra de Gredos and Montes de Toledo are the mountain chains found on this section of the map. You can experience both nature and big city life here.
The Mediterranean is located on the east coast of the country. On the map, you will find the Catalona, Valencia and Murcia regions. Large cities to visit in this area include Alicante, Torrevieja and Barcelona. This area is also known as the Costa Blanca.
The biggest attraction on the Costa Blanca is the beaches. These areas on the coast are very busy during the summer season as people from all over Europe flock to the beaches. Look on the map for smaller villages that lie inland from the coast. There are many interesting places to visit in this area.
The southern part of Spain is where you will find cities like Seville, Malaga and Granada. This area is also known as the Costa del Sol. This area is becoming a popular tourist destination. Major attractions on this coast include the beaches. This area is also becoming a popular spot for golf vacations in all seasons.
The southern part of the map has beach areas on the coast line. Further inland there are mountain areas. Cities on this part of the map are also very popular spots to visit in the summer. This area is also becoming popular in the winter among people trying to escape the freezing temperatures.
The Best of Spain
Spain is a unique combination of cultures, colors, and landscapes. From the Plaza Mayor in Spain to the stark landscapes of The Canary Islands, there are many ways for you to experience paradise within this country.
Here is some of the best of what Spain offers to visitors every day.
#1. San Sebastian
Located on the Bay of Biscay, what is unique about this community is that it offers the highest per capita rate of Michelin stars for dining establishments. Make sure you walk the steep hills of the city during the day, so you can make room for the culinary experiences offered at night. Try signing up for a food tour of the town as part of the holiday experience.
Situated along the border with Portugal, this region offers visitors a chance to explore the history of Spain. You can find the magnificent Roman amphitheater in Merida, the Old Town of Caceres, which is a world heritage site, and the beautiful cherry trees located in the Jerte Valley. Try to visit during the last week of March to see all the trees in bloom.
The paella always seems to taste better here. Maybe that’s because this famous dish was first created in Valencia. Almost every restaurant claims to make the best one in town. Deciding which one is right can be a fun experience. Make sure to tour the Ciutat de les Arts I les Ciencies, which is an aquarium and cultural complex all rolled into one location. Visit in March of the week-long Las Fallas and its intense bonfires too.
A visit to Seville allows you to see what Andalusia is all about. There is color, exuberance, and a focus on tradition. Wander the streets of the Old Town to find something fantastic. Catch a flamenco show in the evening. Give yourself enough time to wait in line to see the Alcazar, a 1st century Moorish palace. The be sure to enjoy at least one of the native oranges during your stay.
Snuggling up to the Sierra Nevada mountains, you’ll find a stunning array of mosaics awaiting your arrival. The defensive nature of this city allowed it to be the last holdout during the Reconquista period, which means you’ll find grand arches and intricate fountains in the city as well. If you wish to visit the Alhambra, be advised that tickets will often sell several months in advance.
#6. Balearic Islands
If you prefer long afternoons of sunbathing during your holiday, then these islands along the Valencian Coast in the Mediterranean are a perfect choice. Majorica offers more of a resort atmosphere, while Menorca offers quiet calm. Those who enjoy a thriving nightlife will prefer Ibiza.
The best of Spain will help you explore the complex culture of this country. It will allow you to find a quiet spot to relax and find something wondrous to see. From Barcelona to Madrid, and everywhere in-between, Spain allows you to create your own adventure, one step at a time.
Your local highlights on holiday will naturally depend on where abouts you travel to, but we’ll start with some omnipresent and quintessentially Spanish attractions you should make it your business to discover. For a start, you haven’t been on holiday in Spain until you’ve been to a Spanish market. La Boqueria in Barcelona is a great choice, there’ always a hive of activity and colour, sensations and smells – and it’s the best places to find fresh fish, fruit and vegetables and tasty Spanish treats.
The country’s beaches stretch for miles, incorporating coastline with every turn and twist. Swimming in turquoise waters in between your cultural excursions is the perfect way to refresh yourself, especially if you combine it with a good book on the sands. Great beaches can be found everywhere throughout the country, but Tenerife’s volcanic sands are internationally renowned.
You won’t want to leave Spain until you’ve witnessed the sharp stylings of the flamenco dance. Theatres all over the nation pay homage to this fantastic dance style. Dramatically dressed all in black and red, the ladies take to the stage to the sound of live Spanish guitar, delicately picked at unimaginable speeds. These shows are accessible in cities throughout the country.
Food, glorious food
Spain’s gastronomic scene is varied and exciting, as you would expect from the country where tapas was invented. This method of eating – which involves ordering many little plates and sharing with everyone – is a highly social experience and is best found in a traditional tapas bar. Here, you will have to call for the attention of those serving as they simultaneously cater to dozens of diners all at once. By the coast, you’ll taste fish to fresh that it will melt onto your taste buds. Inland, meat is preferred, with Iberian and Serrano ham served with cheese onto crusty bread.
In short, Spain is a wealth of experiences that you won’t want to miss out on and no matter where you go, there will always be something incredible to see or do. Unique gastronomy, a variety of cultures and a plethora of historical attractions, this is a country that you will always want to return to.
3 recommended regions of Spain
Costa del Sol
Costa del Sol, which literally translates to ‘Coast of the Sun’ is Spain’s most popular tourist destination. Each year, thousands flock to this golden stretch of paradise along the southern coast of Spain, soaking up the sunshine and revelling in the warm water.
Costa del Sol really does have a lot to offer visitors. Why else would people come time and time again, from all over the world! There’s a lot more to Costa del Sol than meets the eye. Come and get to know this glowing part of Spain and you’ll soon see what all the fuss is about.
Regardless of where you stay during your holiday to Costa del Sol, you are bound to be close to glistening beaches, million dollar yachts, out of this world resorts and seemingly endless sunshine.
Malaga is the capital city of Costa del Sol. This large city beats with an energy so captivating it will leave you wanting more. With world-class restaurants and a fun-filled nightlife Malaga is an excellent place to stay if you’re looking for an exciting holiday.
There is so much to explore and indulge in when paying Costa del Sol a visit. With everything from safaris to surfing to shopping, this stretch of coastline in the south of Spain is simply a dream for travellers.
If you’re keen to get away from the busier city of Malaga, then there are plenty of options across Costa del Sol. Selwo Aventura is a safari park perfect for nature and wildlife lovers. With over 200 species of animals you are free to walk through at your own pace or hire a 4WD and embark on an offroad adventure like no other. You can even spend the night if you can’t drag yourself away.
If you’re bringing the kids along for your Costa del Sol holiday, then look no further than Tivoli World to keep them entertained. This is the oldest and largest of Spain’s amusement parks and is pleasantly affordable for what it is. Keep in mind, however, that the park is only open April – September.
Being such a long stretch of Spanish coastline, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to water activities during your holiday to Costa del Sol. Buceo Estepona is one of the more popular diving schools in the area, with scuba and diving courses available.
If you’re keen to get up-close with nature but prefer to stay dry, check out Costasol Cruceros. They run one-hour scenic boat cruises as well as dolphin-spotting trips – Definitely a boost to any holiday!
Costa del Sol also has an excellent range of cultural sights and treasures worth visiting during your time there. Museo Ralli and the smaller Museo del Grabado Espanol are some of the top spots. No matter if you’re after a typical tourist holiday where lounging on the beach is the daily norm, or something a little more off the beaten track, there’ll be something here for you in Costa del Sol.
Fuerteventura is a sight like no other. The second largest of the Canary Islands, Fuerteventura is home to sparkling shores, looming volcanos and arid desert land. With a biodiversity like this it’s no wonder Fuerteventura is a magnet for travellers.
Relax, explore, or do a bit of both, no matter what you’re after for your holiday, you’re bound to find it in Fuerteventura. This island paradise will tantalise your tastebuds and entice your adventurous side. With so much to offer, why not escape to this wondrous part of the world and make Fuerteventura your next holiday destination.
The island of Fuerteventura may be relatively big in size for the Canary Islands but it is still small enough to be able to get around easily and spend time visiting the island’s different regions. Fuerteventura is made up of six municipalities: Antigua, Betancuria, La Olivia, Pajara, Puerto del Rosario and Tuineje.
No matter where on the island you choose to stay, you are guaranteed to have easy access to the beach. Fuerteventura has over 150 different beaches, with some being picture perfect white sandy beaches and others more elusive black volcanic sand beaches. Puerto del Rosario is the island’s capital and is a great place to base yourself during your Fuerteventura holiday.
This paradise island dotted in the Atlantic Ocean has all that you need for a holiday of pampering, rejuvenating and relaxing. With sand as soft as pillows you could spend days sleeping on the beach, dipping into the cool blue water to wake yourself up and remind yourself that this dream is actually a reality.
When you’re rested and ready there’s a multitude of adventure activities which await you in Fuerteventura. The word ‘Fuerteventura’ translates to ‘strong winds’ in Spanish, so it won’t come as a surprise to hear that Fuerteventura is a hot-spot for wind-surfing, kite-surfing and regular surfing.
The island has numerous schools where you can rock up, rent some gear and get some lessons on how to surf like a pro. A number of locals from Fuerteventura have actually gone on to win numerous international windsurfing and kiteboarding championships.
Along with all the water-based action, there is also a great deal to do on-shore in Fuerteventura. Located in the capital, Puerto del Rosario, is Fuerteventura’s Sculpture Park. This open-air park houses over 100 sculptures, many of which were created for the International Symposium of Sculpture.
There are also a number of museums, including The Salt Museum, the Antigua Windmill Craft Centre and The Atalayita Archaeological Interpretation Centre. Fuerteventura also plays host to some vibrant concerts and festivals, so if you time your holiday correctly you may just be lucky enough to catch one. The Fuertemusica is a festival which showcases local emerging talents and takes place each year in El Cotillo.
Fuerteventura lies along the same latitude as Florida and Mexico, meaning that temperatures often remain between 18C and 32C. This means that travel to Fuerteventura is possible all year round and you won’t have to worry about any extreme weather conditions on your Fuerteventura holiday
Off the eastern coast of Spain, dotted along the Mediterranean Sea lie the Balearic Islands – Mallorca, Ibiza and Menorca. The second largest of the three islands, Menorca, is nowhere near as touristy as the others yet it has the largest number of beaches.
Google ‘Menorca’ and you will be bombarded with pictures of stunning bright blue water so clear that you can see the ocean floor. It will have you wishing you could jump straight through your computer screen! Well there’s no need if you book a Menorca holiday, as soft golden sand, tranquil beaches and Spanish charm will be yours in no time.
The capital of Menorca is the city of Maó. With its picturesque harbour, treasure trove of restaurants and bars, this city is an ideal place to base yourself during your holiday to Menorca. Located on the eastern end of the island, Maó is within close proximity to Menorca’s airport and a hub for public transport.
Menorca’s former capital, Ciutadella, Alaior and Ferreries are also popular places to stay, with each town having its own distinct character and atmosphere. For a more laid back feel check out Fornells on the northern coast of the island, a beautiful old fishing town.
When planning your holiday to Menorca, there are a few things you will want to keep in mind. Peak tourist season is typically from June through until September. Hotels will be most likely be crowded during this time, so consider visiting around April/May or October to avoid the crowds but still enjoy the sunshine.
During the winter season, October – April, you will find that many hotels actually close and similarly, many attractions only open on the weekends.
Most travellers opt to fly to Menorca, with regular flights from the mainland of Spain as well as the neighbouring islands of Ibiza and Mallorca. When planning your Menorca holiday, however, don’t forget that there is another popular mode of transport available – boat.
Ferries from the mainland service Menorca regularly and often dock right by the island’s capital, Maó. Travelling to Menorca by boat will treat you to scenic views and have you breathing in the fresh Mediterranean air like there’s no tomorrow.
Getting around on the island itself is not a hassle at all. There is an extensive and reliable bus system run by Transportes Menorca which services Maó, Alaior, Es Mercadal, Ferreries and Ciutadella. Cars can also be hired, as can motorbikes. As traffic can be rather hectic around the beaches during peak season, motorbikes and push bikes can be quite handy.
During your Menorca holiday be sure to check out Monte Toro, the highest point on the island, where you’ll be privy to exquisite views of the island. If you’re keen on more stunning displays from Mother Nature, pay a visit to Cova d’en Xoroi, a natural cave cliff with a night time bar and club and a prime place to watch the sunset.
How is the weather in Spain ?
When is public holidays in Spain ?
Below you can see a list of the public holidays / no working days.
|1 January||New Year's Day||Año Nuevo|
|6 January||Epiphany||Epifanía del Señor|
|28 February||Andalusian National Day||Día de Andalucía||Only AND|
|1 March||Balearic National Day||Dia de les Illes Balears||Only BI|
|19 March||St. Joseph's Day||San José||Only MU, VA|
|Variable||Maundy Thursday||Jueves Santo||Exept CT and VA|
|Variable||Good Friday||Viernes Santo|
|Variable||Easter Monday||Lunes de Pascua||Only BA, BI, CT, NA and VA|
|23 April||Aragonese National Day||San Jorge o Diya d’Aragón||Only AG|
|23 April||Regional Day||Día de Castilla y León||Only CL|
|1 May||Labour Day||Día del Trabajador|
|2 May||Regional Day||Fiesta de la Comunidad de Madrid||Only MA|
|17 May||Galician Literature Day||Día das Letras Galegas||Only GA|
|30 May||Canarians National Day||Día de Canarias||Only CI|
|31 May||Regional Day||Día de la Región Castilla-La Mancha||Only CL|
|9 June||Regional Day||Only LR and MU|
|13 June||St. Anthony's Day||San Antonio||Only CE|
|25 July||Galician National Day||Santiago Apóstol o Día da Patria Galega||Only GA|
|6 August||Santa Maria of Africa||Santa María de África||Only CE|
|22 August||Feast of the Sacrifice||Celebración del Sacrificio||Only CE and ME|
|8 September||Regional Day||Día de Asturias||Only AS|
|8 September||Regional Day||Día de Extremadura||Only EX|
|11 September||Regional Day||Diada de Catalunya||Only CT|
|15 September||Regional Day||Día de Cantabria o Día de La Montaña||Only CA|
|17 September||Regional Day||Día de Melilla||Only ME|
|9 October||Valencian National Day||Dia de la Comunitat Valenciana||Only VA|
|12 October||Spanish National Holiday||Fiesta Nacional de España|
|25 october||Basque National Day||Euskadi Eguna||Only BA|
|1 November||All Saints Day||Día de todos los Santos|
|6 December||Constitution Day||Día de la Constitución|
|8 December||Immaculate Conception||Inmaculada Concepción|
|25 December||Christmas Day||Navidad|
|26 December||St. Stephen's Day||Sant Esteve||Only CT|
What is the largest city in Spain ?
Below you can see a sortable list of the largest cities in the country
|7||Las Palmas de Gran Canaria||354,000|
|12||Palma de Mallorca||302,000|
|16||Hospital et de Llobregat||255,000|
|21||Santa Cruz de Tenerife||203,000|
|27||Jérez de la Frontera||182,000|
|44||Castellón de la Plana||136,000|
|47||Santa Coloma de Gramanet||123,000|