Vacation in Spain
The first thing to do after you’ve decided to vacation in Spain is to get a map of
the area. If you’re not sure of where to go, or if you’d like to plan your itinerary, a detailed map of Spain is
invaluable. It will help you schedule your day trips and calculate driving times, making for a more enjoyable
Ferran Adria in conversation with Colman
Carbonell House and Hotel Gran Sol in the background. Photo by
If you’re starting in the north, you’ll find a variety of coastal resorts and
sleepy fishing villages, each with a different ambiance. The Pyrenees Mountains border Spain and France, and
offer the opportunity to enjoy hiking and walking tours. You’ll enjoy immersing yourself in Spanish culture in the
small towns, including La Rioja, where you can enjoy the fruits of the industry here: wine
The Principality of Andorra is sandwiched in the eastern portion of the mountain
range between the Spanish Pyrenees and French Pyrenees. Photo by NASA.
Sprinkled throughout the small towns are fascinating
points of interest, such as ancient monasteries and cave paintings. The metropolitan areas, including Madrid, the
capital of Spain, bustle with activity and house many historical landmarks, including ancient churches and museums.
Depending on your interests, you can enjoy natural, outdoor activities, or more fast-paced ones.
The center of the country is populated by several mountain ranges. The
Sierra de Guadarrama, Sierra de Gredos and Montes de Toledo are the biggest ranges in this area. These areas
are generally only visited when travelers are en route to the other side of the country.
Valle del Lozoya, as seen from Peñalara in the Sierra de Guadarrama mountain
range. Peñalara is the highest mountain peak in the range. Photo by Miguel303xm.
The Mediterranean Sea borders the east side of the country. This region is
divided into smaller coastal areas, such as the Costa Blanca and Costa del Sol. Here you’ll find the resort
towns of Alicante, Torrevieja and Barcelona. Tourists generally flock here for the beaches, shopping and
El Campello, Alicante. Photo by Kasiber.
Whether you’re traveling with a group or on your own, be sure to get a map of the
area. Even if you’re with a group, you’ll still find it helpful to have a map, to keep from getting
lost. Identify the areas on your map that you’ll be visiting, to ensure you’re on track. If you’re
traveling independently, it helps to have a very detailed map. If you’re driving, familiarizing yourself with
the lay of the land, the major thoroughfares and the local streets may take some of the stress out of driving in a
Spain and Portugal Satellite image. Taken from NASA's Visible Earth.
With a detailed map and a brief overview of the popular areas of Spain, you’ll be
equipped to plan the vacation that you’ll enjoy.