This post is contributed by First Choice who specialise in holidays to Spain.
Spain has beckoned me from afar for years. With its Mediterranean location and colourful history, juxtaposed with a passionate mix of good food and wine, rugged landscapes, poignant architecture and art culture, Spain is a sophisticated country that has much to offer the travellers who reach its sandy shores. I’m yearning to travel there soon and there are obviously a few parts of Spain that are luring me. While there are many well-trodden parts of Spain and obvious sights to see, there are a few pockets where my intrigue wants to wander to.
A short, healthy stay in Costa Blanca
What better way to spend some time recharging the batteries and enjoying the Spanish life than to spend some time in some of the healthiest parts of the world. Residents in Costa Blanca seem to be some of the luckiest, living in what the World Health Organisation classifieds as one of the healthiest places in the world in which to live.
Costa Blanca is nestled in Spain’s Alicante province across a 200-metre rim of the Mediterranean. Gorgeous azure views, lush rows of almond trees, olive orchards and vineyards and fresh, organic Spanish food all coax me, not to mention historic Moorish castles and quaint churches. I’ve even found myself a stunning little vegan B&B from which to take in the views and sweet, salty air – Vegan Life Energy. Costa Blanca is definitely one of the highlights on my wishlist for Spain.
Laze about and Wander The Canary Islands
The archipelago that is The Canary Islands is calling me too. Yet, these majestic islands are located a fair way off the coast of Spain. The Canary Islands, located off the cusp of Morocco and once explored by Columbus himself, bring the promise of sun-kissed beaches, summery temperatures and a lifestyle that enjoys the occasional siesta, even when the travelling becomes a little tiring. The Canary Islands’ largest island, Tenerife, is laid back by day and brimming with party life by night. In the throes of summer, daylight can stretch for up to 11 hours per day!
As much as Tenerife is known for its invigorating, cosmopolitan feel, there is a traditional, and historical, backbone here. Some of Spain’s best tapas bars can be found on Tenerife’s coastline, along with rugged, mountainous landscapes further afield that are perfect for exploring. Mount Teide National Park, with its crater-pocked terrain, looks to be an adventurous drawcard too. A nearby island, La Gomera, offers the promise of unspoilt daily life that’s frozen in time. I can easily picture myself sunning myself along pristine, sandy lengths of shoreline in the quieter stretches on Tenerife’s south-west coast. First Choice have plenty of alluring options when it comes to accommodation on Tenerife, so they’ll have to be my first port of call during my planning.
Embark on the trail of El Camino de Santiago
While I’m not a religious person who sets out on pilgrimages, I am one that is intoxicated by the chance of walking through the natural beauty blanketing across Spain’s countryside. I would love to journey along the whole length of this symbolic and fascinating trail, particularly from France to Spain, as long as my body can carry me the whole way.
One of the final stages of the trail, running from Sarria to Santiago seems to hold a sense of excitement for walkers travelling along it. It’s at this stage that there is the renewed strength that arises for walkers, who know that their final destination is almost within sight. Rolling hills and country life only mirror this excitement and what better way to experience the back-trails of Spain than through some its lesser known towns. The arrival at Santiago de Compostela Cathedral becomes the ultimate reward for all the hard work; the resting place of Saint James the Great who was one of Jesus Christ’s apostles. It’s a part of Spain that many may not experience in their lifetime and that suits me perfectly.