A Beginner’s Guide to Traveling to Spain

Spain boasts one of the largest international tourist industries in the world, and upon research, it’s a no brainer as to why. Spain’s vibrant culture, historical legacy, diverse landscapes, popular coastlines, golden beaches, and geographic location all tie together to create this little piece of heaven on Earth.

Tourists aren’t only keen on visiting Spain, they’re keen on visiting again and again. Why? Because once they immerse themselves in Spanish culture, visit the beaches, and tour the country, they say that they’ve gotten both a memorable and exhilaratingly happy experience that will stick with them for life.

 

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What are the three largest cities in Spain?

There are too many beautiful and unique places in Spain to list, but the top 3 most popular are Madrid, which is the capital, Barcelona, and Valencia.

 

Madrid

Madrid is famous for being the center of all roads in Spain, the Puerta Del Sol, which is why people always gather there to celebrate the New Year. It’s also famous for the world-known Prado Museum, the world’s oldest restaurants, the Temple of Debod, and the royal palace of Madrid. All of these places are highly regarded and are some of tourists’ favorite spots to see!

 

Barcelona

Barcelona is the second most popular city in Spain, it’s most famous for colorful festivals, world-class cuisine, stunning architecture, and its lively nightlife! The architecture, which dates back over 2,000 years, still holds beautifully today, with many sights to behold such as the Barcelona Cathedral. 

During the summer, Barcelona is known for the countless street festivals and carnivals that occur, which feature great food, live music, and their stunning human tower competitions (Castells)! The Barceloneta beach is also the most famous beach in the city, always buzzing with life, especially on the weekends. You can find food stalls, sunbathe, and enjoy the high quality of life.

 

Valencia

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Valencia, Spain’s third largest city, is famous for the City of Arts and Science, the Valencia Cathedral, the Central Market, & Old Town. It’s also not short on museums including the Science Museum, the Ceramic Museum, and the Fine Arts Museum. You can truly get a taste of the culture and rich history of Spain in Valencia in many different ways.

 

The Culture and Customs of Spain

Spain’s history goes back thousands of years, and so does its people’s. Tourists are always amazed at just how much Spain screams LIFE when they see it with their own eyes. You can expect celebrations (Fiestas), traditions, history, football (soccer), bullfighting, flamenco dancing, and much, much more.

 

 

Spain has given us some of the most impactful art in human history, with artists such as Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali, and you can see the artistic expression all over Spain. The architecture, whether from the roman era, the gothic, or baroque, is all well maintained and respected, as Spain still has a Roman Catholic majority that’s proud of its roots.

 

 

The Spanish speaking people are respectful & kind, as they’re used to tourists, and love to show them what they stand for and how full of life they truly are as a people. One way this can be demonstrated, is through the Flamenco dance, which is seen as not just a dance, but an art of expression where dancers showcase emotions and tell stories through body movements and facial expressions.

 

Activities to Do While Visiting Spain

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There’s no shortage of activities and things to do in Spain, no matter a person’s preferences. The golden Mediterranean beaches are always buzzing with life, there are historical tours happening daily, some of the finest dining in the world, huge market gatherings, national parks, museums, and one can even visit the Canary Islands, a popular tourist spot in itself.

 

 

The entirety of the country takes a “Siesta” in the early afternoon, which is basically a short nap. This gives everyone more energy for the various nighttime adventures that are all so common to Spain and its environment & people.

 

Fun Facts about Spain

Words can’t do Spain justice! It really is a place that needs to be seen in person to be understood and appreciated, but if you haven’t had enough about reading about Spain, here are some fun facts!

  • In 2017, 82 million people visited Spain, making it the second most visited country in the world, for the 5th consecutive year. It’s now still going strong and still recorded as second, with almost 84 million tourists in 2019.

  • Spain is one of the top wine producing countries in the world, so beautiful and relaxing Vineyards can be found everywhere.

 

 

  • The Running of the Bulls which occurs July 7th to the 14th, and La Tomatina- a tomato-throwing festival that started in 1945, still happens every year on the last Wednesday of August, attract millions of tourists yearly.

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  • The world’s first “modern” novel, Don Quixote, was written in Spain in 1605 by Miguel de Cervantes.

  • The life expectancy in Spain is 82, which is 10 years higher than the world average!
  • Finally, Spain gets more tourists than the number of people who live there! Would you like to be one of them?

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