Spain Adventure Travel Guide
In the south west of Europe, Spain is bordered by the land masses of France and Andorra to the north and Portugal to the west. Its coastline meets the Bay of Biscay to the north, Mediterranean Sea to the south and Atlantic Ocean to the west.
The topography of this country is dominated by a series of highla... (Read more...)
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There are three main areas of lowlands in Spain: the Ebro river valley in the north-east, the Andalucian plain in the south-west (a river basin for the Guadalquivir river), and narrow coastal plains between the sea and the mountains in the south.
Due to its exposed position, Spain has a variety of climates. The northern coast is affected by the Atlantic Ocean so has wetter winters and slightly cooler summers than the rest of the country. Central Spain’s plateau and surrounding highlands have a continental climate with very cold winters experiencing snow, and hot summers. The south and east have the more typical Mediterranean climate of mild winters and hot summers. Mountainous areas experience an alpine climate of low temperatures and much snow.
Madrid holds a central physical position in the country, and is Spain's vibrant capital for finance, architecture and culture.
Zaragoza aims to be European city of culture as well as host of the Winter Olympics 2022. For today, the city is a wonderful place for cathedrals, monuments and tapas. In Spain's north-east corner, Barcelona is a popular destination for tourists, thanks to its parks, and its beach and city life. Valencia, in the east, is the home of paella and home to many museums. Seville is a colourful city in the south worth a visit to enjoy its festivals. On the south coast, Malaga is well known for its beaches, but it also provides historical sites, which include Moorish fortresses and a Roman theatre. All major cities have airports and there are good transport links throughout the country.
Both Tarifa in the south-west and the Golf de Roses in the north-east of Spain have almost constant winds, making for ideal kite-surfing conditions. The north has wider beaches ideal for beginners. Tarifa is ideally situated for days out to Gibraltar and Morocco. In Spain all levels are catered for, from hiring equipment and having beginners' lessons, to getting expert tuition and safety advice. You can learn more about this kite surfing adventure and lodging with Expedia.
A fast and thrilling sport, water-skiing tests both balance and coordination skills. Most courses take place on lakes, as slalom circuits can easily be laid out that help put theory training into practice. With expert guidance you will progress from novice to confident intermediate and on to advanced skills in no time.
There are demanding trails through the Picos de Europa National Park in the north. The amazing scenery at every turn, across mountains, around lakes and through forests, makes the effort worthwhile. In Andalucia, Grazalema National Park offers tracks for all levels of cross-country biking; try cycling through meadows or along coastal roads for a relaxing day out. If you are in need of a challenge, take a guided tour along some exhilarating single tracks where you will cross rivers and attempt some tricky descents.
Spain caters well for relaxing beach holidays but if you are interested in adventure, try a multi-activity holiday. With these tours there is no need to choose between activities as they are all on offer and all organised for you. Trek up into the Pyrenees and white-water raft your way back down or wake up with yoga, learn to surf in the morning, take a 4x4 ride in the afternoon, and finish with tapas and drinks in the town. There are no limits to the combinations.
An exhilarating way to spend an afternoon would be to try canyoning. Abseil down canyons into streams and rivers, or cross waterfalls and explore pools and passes; you know this will be fun. Canyoning will let you apply your trekking and rock climbing skills in a new environment, and feel the adrenalin rush as you splash down in the water and soak up the natural surroundings.
Fast and furious, these bikes give a breathtaking ride. Try them out for a few hours or take a full-day trip and see where your determination can take you. The instructors will give you the basics to start. As you progress they will provide tips on how to improve your skills, and even teach you to slide and jump.
In Andalucia a must-see is the Alhambra in Granada, otherwise known as the Red Fortress. It is a magnificent representation of Spain's Islamic past. The Frank Gehry Guggenheim museum is a piece of architectural wonder, located in Bilbao. Open since 1997, the building and its exhibitions still draw crowds. The skiing in Sierra Nevada is said to be some of the best in Europe. It is the most southerly ski resort in Europe and although smaller than most others, its warmer air, excellent runs and well-catered facilities makes it a great snowy destination. During the summer months Barcelona is fantastic for its tapas, Figueres is the birthplace of Salvador Dali with the largest surrealist creation displayed and for anyone daredevil enough, on the 6th July the Pamplona Bull Run takes place.
Mediterranean Spain suits all seasons. The highlands are fantastic for trekking and cycling during the summer, in the winter the snowy peaks offer great winter sport opportunities. The coast has exposed areas for wind-based water sports and the sheltered bays are ideal for diving, swimming or just relaxing on the beach. The cities provide culture, arts and delicious food. This is certainly a country that will cater for your every need: from weekend break, to month-long stay.
The Mediterranean has warm clear waters that provide a fantastic place to scuba dive. For traditional activities try trekking through any of the highland areas or kayaking along one of the many rivers. For something a little different go on a fitness break where you can learn about nutrition and weight management, or go running with like-minded people. Fun activities include paragliding or sphereing.