From indulging your palate to your cultural curiosities, there is plenty to do while touring Spain. You can explore the best this country has to offer against a backdrop of pretty scenery and a soundtrack of Spanish guitar. The possibilities are truly endless, and you’ll need a bit of time to tick it all off. If you have room left on your list, add these things to do on your Spain holiday.
Check out Gaudí’s architecture
It’s hard to miss the incredible works of architect Antoni Gaudí in Barcelona, and you shouldn’t – it’s an awe-inspiring highlight. His unique style can be found around the city, with some of his most famous works including Park Guell, Casa Milá, Casa Batlló and the iconic Sagrada Família. Quite unlike anything you’ve seen before, the creations of Gaudí will impress and inspire with their colourful facades and intriguing designs.
Go to a flamenco show
Flamenco was inscribed into UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list in 2010, recognising its cultural importance and influence. This passionate expression of song and dance gives travellers a deeper insight into the Spanish culture and evokes all kinds of emotion. You’ll get swept up in the narratives depicted in the heartfelt vocals, the commanding moves, and the enchanting instrumentals. A definite must-see while you are in Andalusia in southern Spain, the heartland of Flamenco.
Sample the tapas
The tapas experience in Spain goes far beyond just satisfying your tastebuds – it’s a social affair full of atmosphere as well as flavour. These delicious little appetisers that accompany your drinks come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, and you’ll not tire from trying them all. In many places, particularly in traditional little tavernas (tascas), these are free of charge when you order a drink. However, as the tapas scene has snowballed into a hugely popular culinary experience, you will find yourself paying for them in some places on the tourist trail.
Try the specialties
Tapas will whet your appetite for Spanish cuisine and leave you wanting more. The good news? There’s plenty to try! You can’t leave Spain without having tried a traditional paella, a deliciously hearty rice dish packed with flavour, or gazpacho, a chilled soup that tastes better than it sounds! Wash it down with some Sangria and treat your tastebuds to some fried pastry dipped in chocolate sauce (what’s not to love about that?) from a churro vendor.
Visit the historic sites
Spain’s rich history is illustrated all around the country, with plenty of significant sites depicting narratives of a time gone by. Some of the most iconic include the Alhambra in Granada, the Great Mosque of Cordoba, and the Alcázar of Seville. These, along with an impressive collection of other historic monuments, provide an insight into Spain’s past and the long-standing history that has shaped it into the country that it is today.
Enjoy siesta time
During siesta time in Spain, things slow right down. You’ll notice many shops and businesses close between roughly 2pm and 5pm while the locals enjoy long lunches and a rest. Don’t plan to head out shopping in the afternoon, particularly in smaller towns where this tradition holds strong. While the influx of tourism has started seeing the typical siesta time observed less and less in the cities and tourist hubs, the notion is still present and it’s worth doing as the locals do and kick back during siesta time.
Learn some local language
Taking the time to learn some of the local language will prove handy for your holiday in Spain. It will not only be appreciated by the locals you meet and help to break the ice, but it will also make your travels easier. As well as being worthwhile during your trip, adding some Spanish phrases to your vocabulary could be of benefit long term. Spanish sits in the top three most spoken languages in the world, alongside English and Mandarin, so there may be times where you’ll run into Spanish speakers (either at home or abroad) and you can impress with some of the lingo you learnt in Spain.
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