Spain

A country that embodies a vibrant life, with fresh and local food and an easy-going culture is sure to be a part of anyone’s travel dreams. Located on the western coast of the Mediterranean Sea, Spain has a moderate & arid climate, and a sun that doesn’t stop shining.

Explore the rugged mountain ranges, where ancient villages stand tall on hilltops and mountain valleys. Get lost in the lively streets of Madrid, where tapas and laughter are served in abundance, or the sun-soaked beaches of Barcelona, Spain is a vibrant playground for travelers seeking a life of relaxation and rejuvenation.

Uncover the secrets of Spain’s history as you wander through Roman ruins, Moorish palaces, and Gothic cathedrals. These streets inspired the creation of the dramatic and melodic style of flamenco as well as the notorious San Fermin celebration (otherwise called the ‘Running of the Bulls’). This landscape has inspired world-renowned artists for generations, including Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso, as well as Ernst Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises”.

Map of Spain showing main features and attractions for culture and tourism

The Basics

Currency – Euro € | 1 EUR = $1.10 USD

Language – Spanish with regional languages (Catalan, Galician, Basque)

Outlets – Type C, compatible across Europe

Tipping – Tipping is common practice in Spain, with 5%-15% of the bill

Water – Tap water is potable, free drinking water available in large cities (bring your reusable bottle!)

SafetyLevel 2 due to terrorism and civil unrest

April – May

September – October

Spain is a beautiful and relaxed country on the western coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The coastal breeze and varying terrain have supported an ideal climate year-round.  Mountainous regions in the North and the Pyrenees mountains which divide Spain and France (and don’t forget about Andorra) host ideal terrain for hikers and cooler weather. Meanwhile, the elevation levels off south of the mountains for perfect wine country, and a more arid sunny landscape. 

In all honestly, I don’t think there is any bad time to visit Spain! The coldest months are between November-March, but it’s a very wild cold (40-50F). The peak tourist season runs through the summer between May-September. During this time, you can expect to find larger crowds and higher prices as travelers soak up the summer heat. 

As with many European destinations, the shoulder seasons of April-May & September-October are ideal months to travel. You will experience smaller crowds, favorable weather, and lower prices. While we love meeting fellow tourists, we really love getting these magical places all to ourself!

Major Events In Spain

  • Semana Santa, multiple locations – Easter Week
  • San Fermin (Bull Run), Pamplona – July
  • Premiere Futbol League, multiple locations – August-May
  • La Tomatina (Tomato Fight), near Valencia – August

Spain is a haven of artistic and cultural wonders – both world-famous and those yet to be discovered. Lose yourself in the unique creations of Spanish artists like Goya and Picasso, and let their genius inspire your own artistic aspirations (or stick to stick figures, no judgment here). 

The legacy of Spain’s Moorish past is written in the intricate details of Alhambra’s palaces and the winding streets of the Albaicín in Granada (a major Game of Thrones filming location). You’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a fairytale, where Arabian Nights meet tapas feasts. Gothic and Renaissance architecture will have you craning your neck in awe, wondering how people could create such majestic masterpieces by hand. 

But there’s more than museums and Wold Heritage sites – there are parties and celebrations like nowhere else in the world! Spain is vibrant in its celebrations of religion and tradition, and it often involves blazing red fabric getting thrown around dramatically. You’ve probably heard of San Fermin in Pamplona, where thousands of people run through the streets as they’re chased by a raging bull, but did you know it’s been an annual event since the 1400s? 

Some other favorites include Semana Santa, where the streets come alive with processions and heartfelt devotion leading up to Easter, or La Tomatina, where tomatoes fly through the air like edible fireworks (which is the world’s largest food fight!). These celebrations will leave you with memories and stories you can’t get anywhere else. 

Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory | Brittanica

Spain’s landscape is as diverse as the people that explore it. From the majestic Pyrenees Mountains that divide Spain and France, to the sun-soaked beaches of the Costa Brava. With 16 National Parks (11 on the Iberian Peninsula, 4 on the Canary Islands, and 1 in the Balearic Islands), Spain is a playground for all nature lovers

For a relaxing space outdoors, head to Southern Spain in the region of Andalusia, where castles sit atop limestone spires, creating the perfect place to soak up the sun and re-read The Alchemist. For a true adventure, take 30 days to trek the 800 km on the Camino de Santiago, a historical Christian pilgrimage in the Middle Ages. This journey draws in over 200,000 people per year!

For a touch of the otherworldly, head to the volcanic landscapes of the Canary Islands, where lunar-like terrain and black sand beaches will make you feel like an astronaut on vacation. And keep your eyes peeled in Doñana National Park, a wildlife haven where you can spot flamingos, wild horses, and maybe even a Spanish lynx if you’re lucky (and quick with your camera).

Spain’s mild temperature opens its doors to hikers and outdoor adventurers year round! Don’t forget to pack your sunglasses and hiking shoes for a journey through the hidden gems and world wonders in Spain.

The Pyrenees Mountains | DK Find Out

Travel Planning