Fun loving? Thrill seeking? Or simply in need of an affordable break? A holiday in Spain has all the answers. With festivals galore and too many beaches to choose from, it’s no wonder that Spain is one of Europe’s most popular holiday destinations. What's more, book in advance for Summer 2021 and take advantage of spreading the cost with our flexible payment options.
Four beautiful coastlines, with four unique personalities. Find your perfect beach holiday with our guide to Spain’s famous Costas.
Costa del Sol - for sun
The clue’s in the name with the Costa del Sol. This stretch of Malaga coastline has long been a favourite with sun-seeking holidaymakers, offering warm temperatures throughout the year. Resorts like Marbella and Torremolinos are famous for their beaches and nightlife, while the nearby region of Andalucia offers plenty of traditional Spanish charm.
Costa Blanca - for fun
Stretching over 200km, the Costa Blanca is home to some classic Spanish beach resorts, including Alicante and Benidorm. Around these towns you’ll find bars and nightlife, and themeparks and waterparks, making the Costa Blanca a great destination for family holidays. But if you fancy a bit of a change of pace, you could also check out the area’s more peaceful spots, like the Algar waterfalls and the picturesque town of Elche, or explore the historic sights of nearby Valencia.
Costa Dorada - for history
Just to the southwest of Barcelona, Costa Dorada (aka the Costa Daurada) translates as the Golden Coast, named after the area’s sparkling sandy beaches. In addition to welcoming resort towns like Salou and Cambrils, the Costa Dorada is also worth visiting for its historic sights, such as the Roman ruins of the city of Tarragona and the Les Ferreres Aqueduct. You’ll also be able to enjoy art and culture, bars, nightlife and thriving LGBTQ scenes in nearby Sitges and Barcelona.
Costa Brava - for scenery
Translating as the “Wild Coast”, the Costa Brava is found in the northeast of Spain, close to the French border and the Pyrenees. Stretching from Blanes to Barcelona, the Costa Brava has several buzzing resort towns, like Tossa de Mar and Lloret de Mar. However, it’s the area’s inspirational landscapes that are really worth checking out - such as the rugged coastlines of Cap de Creus and the Mede Islands and the blue waters of Aigua Blava - which captured the imaginations of artists like Dali and Picasso.
Home to cultured cosmopolitan cities, such as Madrid and Barcelona, as well as mountainous terrain and pristine coastlines, Spain is the ultimate destination for families, couples, solo explorers and groups alike. Let's not forget Spain's stunning islands such as the Balearic and Canary Islands, which has hundreds of hours of sunshine a year, electric nightlife and sandy beaches. Read more on Majorca holidays and Canary Island getaways if this sounds like your sort of summer holiday.
Sharing borders with France and Portugal, Spain is an ideal destination for ongoing travel around Europe. You can use it for a road trip - or consider taking advantage of the great rail network. Its southern coastal peak points across the channel to Morocco and the ferry crossing to Tangier can be taken from several Spanish ports including Gibraltar and Barcelona.
Things to do in Spain: history, beaches, food, parties and mucho mas!
For the more discerning traveller, Spain’s cities are filled to bursting with cultural and historic attractions. Marvel at Gaudí's spectacular Sagrada Família or take in the views from Parc Guell in Barcelona. Alternatively, visit the Guggenheim Gallery in the northern Basque city of Bilbao. Nip south to run with the bulls in the festival of San Fermin in Pamplona, or paint yourself tomato red at La Tomatina festival in Buñol near Valencia.
If getting out and about in nature is more your thing, then check out the glorious Costa Verde. It's got national parks, snow-capped mountain peaks and rushing rivers.
If it’s simple sun, sea and sand you’re after you won’t be disappointed as a holiday in Spain has it all, and more. There's thousands of white and yellow sandy beaches lining the coast, while Spain’s Canary Islands is a really relaxation destination. With black volcanic sands, endless blue skies and a whole host of activities and water sports to try, the likes of Lanzarote, Tenerife, Fuerteventura and Gran Canaria won't leave you disappointed. Whether you want a relaxing spa break, a family-friendly hotel to explore a beautiful and captivating island, or a romantic getaway to share with that special someone, look no further than the Canaries.
Looking for a party during your Spain holiday? Although most cities in Spain offer an excellent night scene, the infamous island of Ibiza is arguably THE party destination of Europe, where you can live a nocturnal lifestyle and still come home with a tan.
Sampling the local cuisine during a holiday in Spain is no chore as the rich flavours of the country are exported and adored worldwide. The exquisite tapas of San Sebastián in the far north of the country, boasts an acclaimed reputation, while the Paella of the seaside towns is hard to beat. Sangria and red Rioja wines are a keen favourite while in the north the Spaniards have their very own special brew, sidra, to be found in the unique sidrerias of Asturias. Here's our guide to the best Spanish food and where to find it.
Tortilla de Patatas: An omelette made of eggs, potatoes and onions. The difficulty relies on turning the omelette to cook it on the other side. People usually likes it well done or a bit runny.
Paella: Although invented in Valencia, you can find different versions across the country - the different types you might find include Marinera with seafood, mixta with fish and meat, Valenciana-style. The paella was originally a modest dish, invented in the 15th Century from the rural areas of Valencia (La Albufera). It was an easy dish to make with ingredients only used that were available in the fields.The name of the dish comes from the round pan it is served in.
Dishes from different cities
Bocadillo de Calamares: This is a sandwich with fried squid rings. El Brillante, close to the Atocha train station, is the most famous place to eat it.
Chocolate con Churros: It's a treat that you could eat for breakfast, for an afternoon snack or even an after-party treat. It’s made of flour, water and salt, the dough is then fried in oil. It’s accompanied with an intense hot chocolate. Chocolatería San Ginés close to the Plaza Mayor is the most famous place to eat it.
Cocido Madrileño: It's a dish served in two courses: first a vegetable broth, then comes the second course consisting of chickpeas, meats and vegetables that are cooked in a broth. It usually has black pudding and chorizo. Casa Carola en el barrio Salamanca o Malacatín en la Latina.
Pan con tomate: This is a side dish with grated garlic and tomatoes on bread. This is a must have at your table. You would need to add pan de pagés (rustic bread) and a variety of tomatoes called “de colgar” (the pulp melts on the bread).
Calçotada: Calçot is a variety of onion cooked on the barbecue fire with a special sauce “Salsa romesco”. This dish can be eaten only in the period of end of January-February. Then it’s followed by platters of grilled meats– lamb, sausage, rabbit, or chicken.
Crema Catalana: This dessert was created originally by mistake. Nuns wanted to created a custard for a bishop’s visit but it turned too liquid. They finally added some touches like burnt sugar on top. “Crema” in catalan means “it burns”.
Gazpacho: Is a cold soup made from raw mixed vegetables: tomatoes, cucumber, green pepper, onion, garlic, olive oil, white wine vinegar, salt. Popular in the summer. Most restaurant offer this as a first dish in the daily menu.
Salmorejo: Another cold soup made from raw mixed vegetable : tomatoes, bread, olive oil and garlic. It’s usually served with boiled egg and jamon serrano cut in small pieces as a topping for the soup.
This region used to have many miners, which is why it is well known for the large portions on every plate. So, unlike other Spainish restaurants, you can expect a 1st course, 2nd course, 3rd course and dessert. It’s also called the green paradise - mainly because it rains a lot (well a lot for Spain).
Fabada: A stew made of white beans, chorizo and black pudding. Most “sidrerias” (restaurants where they serve cider) with a lunch menu offer the Fabada at some point during the week.
Cider: Unlike English or Irish cider, this one is bitter. And the way it's served is an art-form in itself. You can see competition for the best “server” of cider every year. As there's no additives and no chemical products it is served a special way to make it taste better (hint: it has to be pointed at the bottom of the top of the glass).
National parks in Spain
National parks can be found throughout much of Spain, both in the mainland and the Balearic and Canary Islands. One of the oldest is Ordesa y Monte Perdido, which sits near the French border. The park’s mountainous terrain is home to a wide selection of rare wildlife, including eagles, hawks and antelopes, making it an inspiring choice for a Spain national park holiday.