Bespoke, tailor made holidays & honeymoons to Spain – Canaries, Balearic’s.
Did you know that Spain has more heritage sites than any other country, with six cities being UNESCO World Heritage Sites? With lively festivals, intriguing architecture, fascinating history and beautiful landscapes, there is much more to Spain than sun, sea and sangria! Forested mountains lead from the Pyrenees to the Atlantic Ocean with medieval towns and pretty villages amongst peaks and plateaus stretching in all directions, there are plenty of great walking and natural history holidays to be experienced in Spain. This is a wonderful country for food and culture, you could spend weeks or months exploring all the culinary delights, history and architecture here! If you don’t have long, why not enjoy a city break to Madrid, Barcelona, Seville or Valencia, to suggest just a few?
The original inhabitants of Spain were the Iberians and Celts and of course many famous explorers travelled from Spain in the Discovery Age – crossing the Atlantic and colonising many parts of Latin America, where Spanish is the main language to this day. Spain has many off shore islands, some of which around Gibraltar are not inhabited. The most well known of Spain’s islands are the Balearics and further south deep in the Atlantic Ocean, the volcanic Canary Islands.
To the north of the country, the majestic Pyrenees mountains form the border with France and Andorra, with Barcelona on the coast and the surrounding vibrant Catalan culture. The area from the border with Portugal and the Atlantic to the Pyrenees forms Northern Spain where you will find Romanesque architecture, sandy beaches, green landscapes and wonderful seafood. Head inland to experience ancient walking trails and medieval villages, there is a wonderful family holiday to be enjoyed here.
Explore Galicia, Cantabria, Asturias and The Basque Country. La Rioja is the most important wine area of Spain and is a medieval village in Northern Spain. Santander is the capital of Cantabria and an attractive and historic city whilst Pamplona makes a great holiday for foodies with parks and squares within it’s ancient city walls. Why not self drive to Northern Spain, either on the ferry to Bilbao or down through France and spend some time enjoying the sights and tastes of this region of contrasts.
Madrid, the capital city is almost centrally located and has plenty of museums and art galleries and fabulous cafe culture. The highest point of the mainland is in the Sierra Nevada, while the highest mountain peak is found on Tenerife. Try staying in one of the many characterful ‘Paradors’ a beautiful range of properties ranging from medieval castles, monasteries and landmark buildings. Experience a fabulous foodie holidays with plenty of tapas, seafood, wine, truffles, hams, cheeses and more. Andalucia is particularly interesting with its ancient customs and culture and fabulous food heritage.
Along the southern coastline of Spain, lie the famous ‘costas’ with plenty of sunshine year round. But take time to move away from the large resorts and explore the real Spain. There are plenty of colourful fishing villages, pretty mountain towns on hairpin bends rising high from sea level, where you can enjoy a glass of something with the locals and listen to bird song in the trees.
Spanish people love to party – fiesta time can be found pretty much anywhere as people gather to enjoy their fine wines, tapas and paella and party in the streets. Head for Seville for the Feria de Abril the two weeks following Easter for plenty of Flamenco and partying or visit Valencia the last Wednesday of August for the famous Tomato Festival where 240,000 lbs of tomatoes are thrown around!!
The Balearic Islands
Mallorca (Majorca) is the largest and probably best known of these islands, which lie off the Iberian East coast of Spain. Avoid the large sprawling concrete resorts and explore the interior and north of this island. There are some fabulous villas and farmhouses. The North-west has a 60 mile coastline backed by the Tramuntana Mountains with rocky coves and clear waters. The hill towns where life slows right down are a haven for artists and craftsmen. There are over 75 beaches on the island, so plenty of relaxation to choose from! Menorca is popular for walking and natural history holidays being well known for it’s ancient megalithic monuments and prolific spring flowers. The best time to visit here is March – May for botany and nature holidays. Ibiza is a gorgeous island with hills, cliffs, forests, pretty villages and plenty of beaches. Forget the noisy party resorts and explore the real Ibiza – luxury villas, rustic farmhouses and loads of traditional restaurants, pretty picnic spots and local craft centres.
The Canary Islands
Lying about 100km off the coast of west Africa is this volcanic archipelago with a sub-tropical climate and good weather all year, a very popular holiday destination. Gran Canaria has plenty to explore with the north being cooler than the warm and sunny south. The east coast is flat with good beaches while there are more rocks and mountains on the western coast. Tenerife is the most populated with 43% of the archipelago’s population living here and a big business in tourism. The island is rugged and mountainous and a great place for walking holidays. Fuerteventura is the oldest of the islands and popular with wind surfers as a wind constantly cools the shoreline. The north has amazing sand dunes and the south long beaches and remote coves. Lanzarote is the easternmost of the islands and has plenty of natural history areas to explore with volcanic hills and salt flats.
Some photos courtesy of Turespana
We can put together tailor made holidays all over Spain including self catering villas, luxury hotels, treks in the mountains, cookery classes, garden tours, painting holidays and much more!