Spain offers many facets of culture, history, and natural beauty for visitors to discover. From Barcelona’s architecture and vibrant nightlife to the mountain scenery of Montserrat and Girona, Spain is a country where you will find something new every day. The best way to explore Spain is by using a combination of public transport like buses and metros and rideshare options such as Uber and BlaBlaCar. A car rental can also be a great option for larger cities like Madrid or Valencia.
Spain is located on the Iberian Peninsula, with Portugal to its west and France to the north. The remainder of the border is water—to the east and southeast is the Mediterranean Sea, and to the southwest is the Atlantic Ocean past the enclave of Gibraltar.
From the lush green laurel forests of Garajonay National Park to the arid desert of Tablas de Daimiel National Park, Spain’s diverse landscapes have inspired artists, scientists, and travelers alike. In fact, the country has more UNESCO Biosphere Reserves than any other nation.
The inland mountain ranges are rugged with rain-swept valleys and tall peaks. To the south are the arid, sun-baked plains of Andalusia, which were immortalized in the lyrics of poets Federico Garcia Lorca and Antonio Machado. In the southeast are coastal lagoons and the tidal pools of the Alboran Sea, and in the northeast are the marshy deltas of the Ebro and Guadalquivir rivers.
Amid all this natural diversity, the most characteristic feature of Spain is its cultural mosaic. It was on this peninsula that cultures from North Africa and western Europe first established themselves, creating a unique mixture that is still evident today.
People from the different regions of Spain have their own local cuisines and traditions, which are often combined in dishes like paella, sangria, tapas, and roasted meats. This rich and varied heritage is reflected in the language and dialects spoken throughout the country.
Aside from its distinctive cuisines, another thing that distinguishes Spain is its thriving arts scene. Music, dance, and theater are at the heart of Spanish culture. In addition, the country has produced a number of world-renowned writers including Cervantes and Borges.
The country is home to a rich array of museums and art galleries. In addition, it has a number of monuments and historical sites that make for important sightseeing stops. For example, visitors can tour the Alcazar castle in Seville and admire its beautiful Moorish architecture or visit the cathedrals of Cordoba and Toledo. Spain’s beaches are also popular with visitors, and the pristine sands of Mallorca and Costa Blanca are a major draw for sun-seekers from across the continent. There are also plenty of opportunities to try some of the country’s famous wines. In fact, wine is an important part of Spain’s economy and has become one of its top exports. In fact, the rosé variety made by the region of Catalonia is especially well-known abroad. This wine has gained a reputation for being one of the world’s finest.