If you take a few days off in December, we recommend a getaway to Spain—you won’t find a better destination. December 6th and 8th are holidays in Spain and we have a few interesting proposals for these dates
Madrid is the perfect destination thanks to its rich culture, the excellent food offer and the lively atmosphere during day and night. The capital of Spain is perfect for art lovers, with dazzling museums that are within walking distance from each other: the Prado, the Reina Sofía and the Thyssen-Bornemisza. The historical center, with its charming buildings and monuments, should be explored on foot. The Plaza Mayor and the Barrio de los Austrias [Hapsburg Quarter] were built in the 17th century and feature red brick buildings and slate turrets. Retiro Park is also from this period, and the Royal Palace was erected in the 18th century.
Madrid is a vivid, cosmopolitan city in which new boutiques, delicatessen shops, cafeterias and gastro bars seem to open every week. A good way to eat are the many bars serving tapas, or mythical restaurants such as Botín, the world’s oldest restaurant, and Casa Lucio, famous for its huevos rotos (somewhere in between fried and scrambled eggs).
When night falls one of the liveliest zones is the Hapsburg quarter around the Plaza de la Paja, plentiful in bars and restaurants. Another option is the Plaza de Santa Ana, with places where live music is played.
Madrid has something to satisfy every taste and preference.
The beautiful cities of Andalusia are another recommended option. Their food and entertainment offer is among the best in the country.
In Seville you can visit the Royal Palace or Alcázar with its exuberant gardens. The Gothic Cathedral, the world’s third largest church, contains the tomb of Christopher Columbus. And there is La Giralda, an ancient minaret that is one of the symbols of the city. And you’ll learn a lot by just walking through the streets.
In Córdoba you can walk through the narrow alleys, a true feast for the senses. Flowers decorate the courtyards and balconies, giving a dash of color to the whitewashed walls. Even if you’ve already been there, it’s always good to revisit the beautiful Mezquita or Mosque.
The towns of Úbeda and Baeza, in the province of Jaen, were included on the Unesco World Heritage List in 2003. They are excellent examples of urban development in the Spanish Renaissance.
Granada is surely one of the finest jewels of Andalusia, with remains from many different historical periods. The famous Alhambra is something you have to visit. You can walk through the steep, narrow streets of the Albaicín and go skiing in nearby Sierra Nevada.
If you love to take it easy, play golf and enjoy the good life, Malaga and the Costa del Sol are beckoning to you to go their way. In Malaga you can visit the Alcazaba and the Pablo Picasso Museum.
Andalusia has a wealth of beauty and history, with six sites on the World Heritage List.
The Canary Islands are the perfect destination for those who crave the sun. The Fortunate Islands seem to be in a state of permanent spring, with an average temperature of 22º C (72° F). The islands of Lanzarote, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria and Tenerife have beautiful beaches that are ideal for relaxing. If you’re looking for adventure, all of them offer a wide array of aquatic activities. Tenerife boasts the Teide, the highest mountain peak in Spain and one of the largest volcanoes in the world. On this island you can stay at Costa Adeje, one of the best vacation zones. On Gran Canaria you can rest on the sand dunes making up the beach and visit the charming little towns. If you’re into any form of surfing, Fuerteventura is your island, with 77 km of beaches. Lanzarote features the Timanfaya National Park, impressive volcanic landscapes and the fascinating architecture of César Manrique.
The Canary Islands are the perfect destination for those who want to keep the winter cold at bay.
Last but not least, we also wish to propose the Balearic Islands.
If you decide to go to Mallorca, the Serra de Tramuntana will surely captivate you with its imposing mountains of evergreen oak and pine forests reaching down to the sea. There are extremely beautiful towns such as Deià, Valldemossa, Fornalutx, Banyalbufar and Orient. The city of Palma is well worth a visit, thanks to its beautiful historical center and the Gothic Cathedral.
Another interesting experience is visiting Ibiza when all its famous discotheques are closed for the winter. It’s wonderful to walk through Dalt Vila, the old quarter of the namesake city. There are hippy flea markets that open all year round, for instance the one known as Las Dalias. If you look around, you’ll be able to find a discotheque or two that open in the fall and winter.
Now if you’re looking for peace and quiet, then Menorca is your island. You can savor the magnificent caldereta de langosta (a lobster dish) at Cala Fornells, and visit the remains of the ancient megalithic culture of these islands.
There’s a lot more to the Balearic Islands aside from its fascinating beaches and coves.
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