With its warm coastline, rich history and thriving nightlife, is it really any wonder that Spain is one of the most visited countries in Europe. Every year, millions come to Spain to sit in the sun, to drink a little sangria, to get chased by angry bulls, to see some famous paintings and to dance the night away.
While Spain is very much a part of modern Europe, it still moves at a slower, more traditional pace. The two-hour long siestas are not universal anymore, but they do still exist and as a traveler you will enjoy the quiet time, especially if you adapt to the Spanish time zone, which means most things don't really kick off until around midnight.
What to do
If you are not from Spain you might picture it as one country, but really it is not. Spain is a nation of regions, each with their own cultures and customs. The Basque Country in the north holds strongly to its independence and features a language and a culture that you will find fascinating. Catalonia, home to Barcelona, is also a unique region and one where large numbers speak Catalan. Madrid, the capital of Spain, is a region unto itself. It is a fast moving city that seemingly stays awake all night. Regions such as Valencia and Navarra also have their own look and feel, helping to make Spain a country that holds new possibilities with each city and area you visit.
Because of its popularity, you can usually find decent deals on airfare to Spain. Keep your eyes out in particular for cheap flights from the UK and Europe during the winter months. That is the time when many choose to hit Spain's beaches and the airlines are looking to fill their seats.
Where to stay
You can find hotels of every level of quality and comfort around Spain, from the luxury hotels in Madrid and Barcelona to budget places full of backpackers on the outskirts of town. You'll also find hostels in every major city and a variety of other businesses catering to the college students and other youth who travel across the continent each summer.