Spain was the most popular holiday spot for Brits in 2019. As the countries start to open up, we look at why it is so great to holiday in Spain. Here are five reasons we love the country and can’t wait to get back!
The Spanish Culture
Spain is a Southern European country which for the visitor means a more relaxed pace, fantastic food, bright sunshine and great food.
It may be an exaggeration to say that most of the Spanish understand English but we’re confident you can get by with Google Translate and a smile!
This is the country that brought us flamenco, sangria and the siesta, what’s not to love?!
Flight Time from the UK to Spain
Travelling to Spain can be easy as most of Spain’s major destinations are just over a two hour flight from UK cities. Major UK carriers including Easyjet, Jet 2 and British Airways as well as Spanish airline Iberia offer regular scheduled flights. Similar to flying to Italy from the U.K., direct flights to Spain are available from Birmingham, Bristol, London, Manchester or Edinburgh. Flight times average between 2 hours and 2 hours 40 depending on where in Spain you are landing.
Reaching European destinations is becoming easier and easier. As well as direct flights to Spain, you can secure direct flights to Greek islands in as little as 3 hours and 31 minutes.
Spain enjoys warm weather almost all of the year round, so expect to pack sunscreen when making the trip!
On the Northern coast of Spain, Bilbao averages daytime temperatures around 13 degrees c in January, rising in in the summer months to around 25 c. In the centre of the country, Madrid drops to just under 10 degrees in the winter months but rises to almost 30 degrees during the summer. Further South, Malaga rarely drops below 15 degrees in the winter, rising to a pleasant 30 degrees in the summer.
Spanish Beach Holidays
Some of the most popular Beach Holidays are in Spain. On the mainland you can enjoy the Alboran Sea coast from Marbella to Malaga in the South, up towards Alicante and Valencia on the Balearic coast, and up to Barcelona, in the North East of the country offers you an incredible city break and some of the best beaches in the country!
Head out to the Balearic Islands for the buzz of Ibiza, or the family appeal of Menorca & Mallorca. (The Canary Islands are strictly Spanish but sit off the coast of Africa.)
Spanish City Breaks
City lovers can enjoy some fantastic cosmopolitan cities with plenty to offer the holiday maker.
The Northern Bilbao is a modern city sat between the Bay of Biscay and the beautiful Green Mountains this historical city has much to enjoy. The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is a ‘sight’ in it’s own right designed by famed Canadian architect Frank Gehry. Step inside for modern art from Rothko, Jeff Koons and Richard Serra.
Foodies will love La Ribera Market one of the largest covered markets in Europe. Inside Mercado de la Ribera (the River Market) you can discover dozens of stalls offering local pintxos (the Basque version of Tapas) to enjoy sitting on the bank of the Nervión River.
The Capital of Spain, Madrid sits right in the heart of the country. Art loves can enjoy Museo Nacional del Prado ‘The Prado’ offers one of the finest collections of art in Europe. Spend a few hours, or more, discovering famous works by Francisco Goya, Hieronymus Bosch, El Greco, Peter Paul Rubens, Titian, and Diego Velázquez.
If city living is getting too hot then you can head to the Parque del Buen Retiro a peaceful park near the Prado, filled with sculptures and monuments and a large lake for boating. Like the Tuilieres in Paris, this is a popular location for tourists and locals alike.
Foodies will love the Mercado de San Miguel with fantastic displays of local produce and plenty of opportunities to enjoy a glass or two of the local tipple! For an upmarket treat, you can try Madrid’s 3 Michelin Starred Restaurant DiverXO for some meaty extravagance.
Football is an institution in Spain, so a trip to Real Madrid will be on the list of any footie fan. Visit the Bernabeu for a match or take the facilities and get your picture inside the hallowed ground.
Like Nice, in the South of France, Barcelona is a major city on the coast, offering you the best of both holidays!
Sagrada Familia the incredible cathedral designed by Antoni Gaudí is the top attraction within the city. This vast cathedral is beautiful inside and out. Make sure you book tickets ahead of your visit.
La Rambla is a tree-lined pedestrian street stretching 3/4 mile from Plaça de Catalunya to Christopher Columbus Monument at Port Vell. An ideal place for a wander, you can watch the street performers or stop for a coffee in one of the many café terraces along the way.
Camp Nou (The New Ground) is the other major football stadium in Spain, home to FC Barcelona. You can book a 90 minute tour of the stadium with a range of tour options to suit different budgets.
Travelling to Spain
Travelling to Spain is less than three hours direct flight from the UK’s major airports. You can take the train to Spain with the Eurostar London to Paris and then onto Figueres, Girona or Barcelona. In the summer months you can take the ferry direct from Portsmouth to Bilbao or Plymouth to Bilbao and Santander with Brittany Ferries.
Need more inspiration?
If a holiday in Spain hasn’t quite convinced you, then we have some other great travel recommendations. For beach lovers, Antigua is a fool proof option, or for city breakers why not check out the Netherlands or Ireland? Whatever your travel preferences, follow Virtual Wanderlust on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest for regular inspiration.
Cover Photo by Aleksandar Pasaric from Pexels
Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Photo by Руслан Кальницкий from Pexels
Sagrada Familia Photo by Enrico Perini from Pexels