Fine sandy beaches, a Roman civilisation and only 10km from Barcelona …are a handful of the charms of the city of Badalona. The third most populated municipality in Catalonia, Badalona can be found just 10 km away from the buzzing city of Barcelona. Evidence of the original city, called Baetulo, which was founded in the 3rd century BC by the Romans, can be … Read More
The luscious lure of the vast landscape of central Spain spread out in front of us; a land bursting with endless possibilities. Not unlike a flirtatious Señorita waiting to tease with her alluring wares, this part of Spain is less explored and full of promise. From skiing in the Sierra de Guadarrama to swimming in the Pantano de San Juan, … Read More
Birthplace of Juan Carlos Ferrero, the world’s number one tennis player in 2003, Ontinyent can be found inland in the province of Valencia. It has been featured as one of our 5 Underrated Towns In Valencia Spain-Waiting To Be Discovered. Ontinyent is situated in the south of the province of Valencia, in the region of Vall d’Albaida, of which it … Read More
Carnival is an amazing time to visit Spain. Step off your plane or train, and come to party with the locals, understand some more of the culture and marvel at some of the antics and fascinating traditions. As you can imagine, in a country where fiestas take pride of place, these events can be rather spectacular. Carnival falls just before … Read More
The old part of the city of Cuenca Spain is placed high up in the mountains of east-central Spain, situated above the gorges of the Huécar and Júcar rivers below. The old town is compact and all around it is green or stone. This idyllic Spanish town is located in the region of Castilla la Mancha, a region that has … Read More
Oh, Granada Spain! Of all the cities and pueblos on the Iberian Peninsula, this one may be the most Spanish—and I mean that in the best way possible. The city shares its name in Spanish with the pomegranate. And much like the fruit, the city has a tough exterior. But its insides are lush and delicious. For many of us … Read More
Villajoyosa translates as “joyful village”. This title is very descriptive, as it is difficult not to be joyful while you are here in this Spanish Costa Blanca town. This tranquil seaside destination has sunny days, soft sand and bright multi-coloured houses that are sure to make you smile. Life in Villajoyosa is pretty sweet and joyful so make the most … Read More
Every now and then, a holiday becomes a necessity as you just need to get away from it all and recharge your batteries. It’s amazing how refreshing it can be to wake up in a new place, explore unfamiliar streets, try new food and meet new people. An ideal spot for a rejuvenating break is the town of Javea, in … Read More
Denia is situated in a prime location right at the northern edge of Alicante province. This beautiful city enjoys both the warm Mediterranean Sea as well as the impressive mountains within the Montgo Natural Park. It is the ideal place to visit if you are looking for somewhere tranquil to explore nature, relax on the beach and savour the slower … Read More
It’s that time that the whole family has been looking forward to for weeks, your holiday to beautiful Benidorm. You have your swimming costumes and suncream packed, your flights booked and you are already dreaming of lazy days by the pool and playing on the beach. You only get to enjoy your holidays for a short time, so you want … Read More
Altea is an ideal spot for a day trip or it is also a quiet and peaceful spot to stay if you want to escape from the crowds that usually gather on the beaches and want a more laid back holiday. A visit to Altea might involve walking through the lovely cobblestone streets of the old city or sipping wine … Read More
I had a dream of visiting Madrid since I studied Spanish in year 9 of British secondary education and on the 8th July 2017, that dream finally came true. I have visited Spain prior to this trip, to Murcia in 2009 and 2015, and will revisit in 2018. This blog is based on my account of travelling accompanied by my … Read More
Although Granada city certainly deserves to be famous for its UNESCO listed Alhambra, and in fact for lots of other reasons, many tourists miss out on visiting some of the most gorgeous spots that can be found in the province of Granada. Not only can you find beautiful nature, but the province of Granada is full of fabulous authentic villages … Read More
The beautiful region of Valencia is known for its varying landscapes. The turquoise coastline, impressive mountains, quaint countryside and urban areas encompass the nearly 24,000 km2 that make up this gorgeous part of Spain. While many escape to the metropolitan cities of Valencia or Alicante, there is a multitude of charming towns and villages located throughout the region that should … Read More
When I first visited Valencia, I had very little expectations. I had recently moved to Madrid and wanted to venture out and explore another part of Spain. I hoped to enjoy a little beach time and eat some paella but that was all I had planned. For me, this trip was a mini break to relax and enjoy the sea … Read More
This feature firstly gives you an overview of the artist’s connection to these places, and then suggests an overnight itinerary to enjoy the route. “Aside from being forbidden in the kitchen I was allowed to do anything I pleased. I wet my bed till I was eight for the sheer fun of it. I was the absolute monarch of the … Read More
For true foodies, who wish to see the process from source to table, the Delta de l’Ebre is a must! Take a beautiful boat trip, where you can visit the mussels and oysters farm area, while seeing a stunning perspective of the wonderful Delta. From there, once you’ve been suitably educated by the Professor, you can head back to land … Read More
When I first moved here in 2003, I was based in Catalonia, I’ve travelled and lived in various parts of Spain since then, but ended up settling back very close to Catalonia. With almost 90 Blue Flag beaches, it is a superb choice for any type of holiday. Check out this amazing feature: Catalonia Best Beaches with Blue Flag Status
Ali Meehan confesses to being a serial expat. She has lived and worked in Australia, Spain, the Middle East, Asia and now she is back in Spain! Her partner (now husband) introduced her to Spain and the rest, as they say, is history. Ali originally set up Costa Women, as a way for her to find other expats and make … Read More
Carol is passionate about her job and has been in the tourism and hospitality industry for more than 25 years. She was born in Catalonia and after living in different places in Spain and Europe, she established herself in Rioja Alavesa in 1998 where she founded her own company, Thabuca. Carol is an avid globertrotter and travel addict and loves … Read More
An evocative, informative, insider article about La Rioja Spain wine experiences in beautiful surroundings, by tour guide Carol Gutiérrez. The name of Rioja evokes wine, great wine. It is one of Spain’s best known wine regions with a long tradition of wine production since Roman times. But La Rioja is much more than..
Although it’s impossible to know exactly when wine arrived in the Iberian Peninsula, we do know that it can be traced to at least the 7th century BC, because of archaeological finds in sites in Andalucia. However for those of you who appreciate wine, you may like to know that there is also evidence that suggests that not far from … Read More
Cave dels Arcs Costa Blanca Quite often expats will find that the idea of moving to another country is much more pleasant than the reality, and many don’t last a year in their new country surrounded by local people, who sometimes have radically different attitudes about what’s important and what’s not. Probably the largest stumbling block for Brits is a … Read More
Founded in the 14th century, and with numerous megalithic stones dotted around the island, Menorca has a real ancient feel to it and there are reminders of early pre-historic human activity at every turn. I’ve been to Menorca many times since I was a little girl, and have the most amazing memories running around on its sandy beaches, swimming in … Read More
At the time of writing (February 2018), Jessica had been living for three years in Barcelona. This feature is absolutely jam-packed with insider tips. Paella, tapas, sangria, and parties that continue until the morning light… Barcelona is known worldwide as one of the most beautiful, culturally rich cities in Europe, with flocks of tourists coming to visit every year. In … Read More
Our meeting point at the statute of Carlos III, at Puerta del Sol, dating from 1478. We normally meet around 10am, but tours can be customised to your needs. 1. There we will see the most outstanding elements of this famous square that has the shape of the sun, hence its name: Statue of the Bear and the Madroño (Strawberry … Read More
The beautiful island of Mallorca sits in the Mediterranean ocean surrounded by neighbouring Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera. Known as the Balearic Islands, Mallorca is the largest. It is a place that holds many happy memories for me as a child, of family holidays and lazy beach days. View of Palma from the cathedral Visiting as an adult, I now have … Read More
If you have been to Spain before and explored some of its cities, then you’ll know that this country is literally heaving with interesting cities to visit. Zaragoza is not overrun with tourists and offers an authentic city option to travellers who enjoy understanding more about the country’s culture, which can be appreciated by spending time in Spain’s cities. Zaragoza … Read More
Crystal Palace Retiro Park The magic and charms of Madrid are almost endless. In fact, as experiential tourism continues to rise, around 12 million visitors were seduced by Madrid’s jewels in 2017. Traditionally, visitors flocked to Andalucia, the Balearic and Canary Islands, and Catalonia, but these days the many merits of Madrid are tempting travellers to discover this highly desirable … Read More
Barceloneta Beach With more than 2000 years of history, Barcelona is the fourth city in Europe preferred by tourists and Spain’s top tourist destination, with over 30 million tourists, of which more than 2.6 million were cruise passengers, who came to visit the city in 2016. The majority of its visitors come from Great Britain, France and the United States. … Read More
Did you ever get shivers down your spine when you went to a new place? Nerja Spain has done this to me and others I know who have been there. Breathe in the immense beauty and views at the Balcón de Europa (Balcony of Europe); take the right turn by the ancient fountain and marvel at the vista down into … Read More
Guest post by our Benifallet Ambassador, writer, personalised travel guide & self-help development author, Jane Clements Benifallet is one of those quintessential dusty Spanish villages, all faded terracotta and peeling paint. The village nestles on the banks of the River Ebro and the houses sprawl all higgledy-piggledy up the mountain side as far as is physically possible to build them. … Read More
Thinking of Catalonia, many often associate the region with the sights of Barcelona, Girona, Tarragona, the Dali museum, the rocky beaches of the Costa Brava and world-class resorts. Rarely do we get in our mind associations with mountain ranges, alpine national parks, rock climbing and mountaineering. Except for a small amount of exceptions to the “normal” rule. Nevertheless, the mountains … Read More
Discover a wonderful city and some gorgeous highlights of the Costa Brava with our guest author Marina, a writer who grew up in the Mediterranean. You can fly into Girona with Ryanair from some UK & Irish airports, pick up a rental car or hire a motorhome – more about that later. Girona – a wonderful, welcoming city Girona’s city … Read More
Spain is such a beautiful country, and we have already featured our list with photos and some words about the 38 Most Beautiful Cities in Spain. Of course not everyone wants to spend all of their holiday in a city, and actually here in Spain there’s an organisation that exists that has categorised some towns as the Pueblos Más Bonitos … Read More
Not far from the azure blue Mediterranean sea, lies the pretty medieval town of Pals. It has been declared to be a Historic Artistic site – you’ll understand why, when you see its beautiful old quarter and wander around its cobbled streets. It’s best explored at your own pace, so that you can lose yourself in the medieval architecture and … Read More
It’s impossible to miss the striking Castle of Miravet overlooking the River Ebro in Tarragona, Catalonia. The Castle is of Andaluz origin, but was later converted by the Templar Knights into a Castle Convent, around the middle of the 12th century. The location is spectacular, perched on the right-hand side of the River Ebro, above the town itself. The old quarter … Read More
L’Escala is a charming fishing village that sits on one of the “most beautiful bays in the world”, according to UNESCO. Lined with beautiful, sandy beaches, somehow the traditional Catalan town has eluded the onslaught of tourism you’ll find in some other spots along the Costa Brava. An hour and a half from Barcelona and less than an hour from … Read More
Even smaller than its neighbour, Portbou, with around half the number of residents, at a total of about 600, if you’re looking for somewhere to escape the normal tourist trappings then Colera may be for you. The centre of the village can be found only 200 metres away from the beach, and the locals simply call it Plaza Mayor – which means Big Square. In the square you can choose from a couple of cafes, and sip your drink of choice under the banana tree, the Arbe de Libertat (The Liberty Tree), which was planted in 1898 for the town’s centennial. As you can imagine this is pretty much where the activity is, the Town Hall is located here as well some of the villages oldest shops. You’ll also find a smattering of restaurants and bars.
The fishing town of Sant Carles de la Rapita has been an important tourist destination for many years, because of its privileged location at the edge of the Delta de l’Ebre, by the sea, set against a backdrop of mountains. It certainly has a charm about it, although in recent years it has become more developed, but nothing that comes close to some areas of the Costa del Sol or Costa Blanca. This town is still a gem, which has exceptional food, surroundings and plenty to do.
Definitely one of the jewels in the Costa Dorada’s crown, Altafulla has a beautiful old quarter and a fine, sandy beach that goes on for over 1 kilometre. The Altafulla promenade has an authentic, rustic charm, with a kind of fishing village feel. There are a few cafes and restaurants to tempt you to sit down for a while, and … Read More
A historic gem, which is full to the brim with character, Besalu is a magnificent example of a medieval town. Cobbled streets and facades and a wonderful bridge are the trademarks of Besalu. Located in the stunning province of Girona, Catalonia, the town is within a 35 minute drive to the coast. The length of the journey will depend on which beautiful Costa … Read More
Made up of three distinctive parts, Alcanar has its fair share to offer tourists, who want to enjoy a typical, relaxing holiday in the area. The town of Alcanar is 3 km from the sea, where you’ll find Les Cases d’Alcanar and Alcanar Platja (Alcanar Beach), and for those interested in history and archaeology, there is a very important site at Alcanar – La Moleta del Remei. If like me, you love prawns and seafood, this area should be on your radar, as I’ve had some of the best prawns ever there, plus it’s well known for serving a very special seafood casserole (which is on my list to try next time).
Definitely one of the Costa Brava’s little treasures, Begur, in Girona’s Baix Empordà, is around 50 minutes drive from the stunning city of Girona (50 km) or 90 minutes (131 km) from the ever-buzzing Barcelona. It’s within relatively easy reach of Ireland and the UK, with flights into either Girona or Barcelona. The town is stylish, colourful, classy and packed with gastronomic delights, with beaches where you can enjoy unparalleled beauty and crystalline waters. You really don’t need to do much in Begur, just laze around in gorgeous coves like Sa Tuna and Aiguablava, and then get stressed out by having to decide which restaurant to choose for dinner.
Home to Catalonia’s largest natural lake, Banyoles is the capital of the county, Pla de l’Estany, and has plenty to offer to visitors. Located around half an hour’s drive from both Girona and Dalí’s hometown of Figueres, although it’s best known for its wonderful lake, it’s also an interesting historic and cultural town, with good quality gastronomic offerings. Walking, Water Activities & Cycling Around Banyoles….Banyoles is a favourite with nature lovers, with a range of walks around the lake, on the Puda, the Can Morgat, Puig Clara, the Estunes, the water canals, and also in Banyoles old town. Of course you also get up close and personal to the water, whether you go swimming, canoeing, kayaking or fishing.
Home to plenty of beaches and one of Catalonia’s fantastic carnivals, Roses used to be a Greek colony, centuries before Christ. Greeks came from the lovely island of Rhodes in 776 BC, tempted by the peaceful waters of Roses’ natural harbour, when they set up their commercial colony. Today, apart from enjoying the obvious charms of the beaches and evening entertainment, you can still see the remains of this Greek city and those of the Roman town. In fact La Ciutadella (The Citadel) contains these remains and others, that relate to the various occupations, which have spanned the last 13 centuries.
Discover the delightful towns and the breathtaking beauty of the Camprodon Valley, where you can take part in all types of mountain activities, even skiing during the winter season. This place is one big photo opportunity, where you can capture spectacular natural settings, along with ancient churches, a 12th century bridge and little historical town centres.
Filled with lovely coves and blue flag beaches, L’Ametlla de Mar is an unspoilt fishing town on the Costa Dorada, Catalonia. I like the colours of many of these fishing towns and villages, and L’Ametlla de Mar is no exception. Of course it depends on the light and the weather, but the whitewashed buildings that watch over the sea, with its gorgeous shades of blue and green, lapping up against the light golden sand, does it for me. Touches of greenery here and there, with rock formations and of course the fishing boats, make up a very pretty scene.
Sitges somehow sits just as comfortably with its title of the Saint Tropez of Spain, as it does with being fondly called the Gay Capital of Europe. Its natural landscape is truly captivating, the architecture elegant and stylish, and its atmosphere is one of bohemian luxury. Originally a fishing village, Sitges is a precious gem which has attracted its fair share of the rich and famous. It is definitely a good place for Barcelona football fans to come and try to spot some of their favourite players.
Salou was a surprise for me! I had very low expectations of Salou because of its reputation as a popular destination with young people who are off on their first boozy holiday, and for being the home of the massive theme park, Port Aventura. We entered from the south, which meant that we saw the beautiful Penya Tallada in Cape Salou, with its spectacular views, which changed my perspective of Salou. Of course it does have everything to suit family holidays for those who want loads of English orientated facilities, but it also has fine streets and so much greenery.
Although I do like to be beside the seaside, and in nature, I also adore fine cities and Tortosa slots nicely into this category for me. It’s a Catalan city, that is dripping in history and culture, on the banks of the River Ebro. There are numerous interesting sights in Tortosa, which include the striking castle, cathedral, and some beautiful modernist buildings. In 2007 archaeologists found remains of the walls of the ancient city of Hibera, close to the now city of Tortosa. Hibera was the capital of Ilercavonia, which was the strategic point from where the Hannibalic War (208 to 201 BC) originated.
The Delta de l’Ebre Natural Park has a unique, magical landscape. As it’s flat, it is perfect for those who enjoy cycling, which in my humble opinion is a wonderful way to absorb its immense personality. The European Commission has designated it as an EDEN (European Destination of Excellence), because of its commitment to sustainable tourism.
Wandering around Les Cases d’Alcanar by the port and nearby, it can be a bit of a challenge to choose the right restaurant. Lots of restaurants and their menus look inviting, and this fishing town has a particularly good reputation for its seafood. Before leaving home I had been tempted to look at TripAdvisor, but I kind of thought that it would take the fun out of using our own instinct, and making our own mistakes….
The dramatic, rugged landscape of Els Ports National Park stretches between the communities of Catalonia, Valencia and Aragon, taking up a total space of around 60,000 hectares. The majestic limestone massif is filled with abrupt cliff faces, natural resources, forests, valleys and abundant wildlife. You can spot Hispannic goats (Ibex), wild boar, badgers, foxes, wild cats, squirrels, otters, Griffon vultures, eagles and many other bird species.
Surrounded by beautiful unspoilt countryside, the first impression of La Senia is of a typical Catalan town in a lovely rural location, with the only exception being that you’ll notice that there are a number of furniture shops as you enter La Senia. Weaving your way further into the town, there is the pleasant surprise of the old quarter and the Plaza Mayor, set against a stunning backdrop.
Located in southern Catalonia about 11 km from the border with the Valencian Community, Ulldecona is a typical Catalan town, only 10 to 15 minutes drive to the sea. Ulldecona is a good choice for visitors who want to sense the real Catalonia, enjoy nature, visit other towns and interesting sites, yet only be a 10 to 15 minute drive to the beach. The closest beach is at Les Cases del Alcanar, but other beaches that are very accessible are Sant Carlos de la Rapita and Vinaros.