As an avid world traveler will tell you, Spain is one of the most mesmerizing holiday destinations in Europe. In fact, its tourism industry is one that attracts millions of visitors every year. Whether you’re into picturesque beaches, delicious Mediterranean food, or historical heritage sites, Spain has something for everyone. Not to mention the warmth of its people which you’ll experience as soon as you arrive.
To help you make the most out of this vibrant holiday destination, this dedicated guide features 6 iconic places and monuments you’ll definitely want on your travel itinerary during your upcoming trip to Spain. Ready? ¡Vámonos!
Strategically located on a high plateau overlooking the city of Granada, in the southern region of Andalusia, the Alhambra is nothing short of spectacular. This palace-fortress garden was built in the 13th century and is a classic example of medieval Moorish architecture. Now a protected UNESCO site, this monument is the second-most visited spot in all of Europe and the main attraction of Granada.
Did you know that “Alhambra” means “the red one” in Arabic? Inside, you’ll find rich, detailed architecture with amazing decorations that will transport you back several centuries. It also has water features which the palace is famous for, including fountains, pools, and acequia.
Heading over to Catalonia, the Sagrada Familia is perhaps one of the most recognizable landmarks in Barcelona. If you’re planning to spend a week or even 3 days in Barcelona, then Sagrada Familia should be on your must-visit list. This immense Roman Catholic church was originally designed by local architect Antoni Gaudí, and despite his passing in 1926, the project hasn’t yet been completed! The construction of this basilica started in 1882 and is still under work today.
The best way to see what Barcelona has to offer is by planning a proper itinerary that will enable you to visit all landmarks. In any case, be sure to conduct enough research so that you don’t miss anything!
Situated up north in San Sebastian, in the Basque country, many consider la Concha to be one of the most breath-taking beaches in all of Europe. If you’re a playa lover, San Sebastian is definitely worth the detour. La Concha is a secluded bay with pristine waters and some of the best views you’ll ever see.
Whether you’re into boating, surfing, or strolling along the promenade, this charming town has a unique vibe that will cater to all traveler profiles. While you’re there, don’t hesitate to explore the northern coast and visit the neighboring city of Bilbao.
All major European capitals have a majestic royal palace that embodies the city’s great and glorious past. Situated in the heart of downtown Madrid, the Palacio Real is one of the world’s largest royal palaces. Featuring no less than 44 staircases and 240 balconies, this impressive baroque landmark is the Spanish capital’s main attraction. Inside, you’ll find collections of art pieces showcasing the rich national history. Don’t forget to take a stroll around the lush gardens, courtesy of architect Fernando García Mercadal.
Mezquita de Córdoba
Spanish for “mosque,” the Mezquita in Cordoba is a building with fascinating history and patrimony. It’s notably famous for its main indoor hall made of pillars and arches, characteristic of Islamic architecture. What makes this particular site so interesting is the wave of influences that have shaped it over the centuries. Originally a Roman temple, it then became a Visigothic church, before the Umayyad turned it into a mosque. A mesmerizing must-see landmark for art and history lovers.
Last but not least, it would be remiss to end this list without mentioning Spain’s world-famous party island, Ibiza! If you’re traveling with your loved one or are on a Euro trip with your friends, stopping by this vibrant island will teach you what true nightlife is like. Reachable by plane or ferry, Ibiza abounds with clubs, bars, restaurants, cafés, and shops for a well-rounded holiday experience. No matter your budget, you’re bound to have an unforgettable time.
Quite frankly, no travel guide could ever do proper justice to all the wonderful things Spain has in store for its visitors. In whichever way you decide to plan out your itinerary, chances are you won’t be bored for one second. Whether that includes exploring the Alhambra, seeing the Sagrada Familia, or partying in Ibiza, this truly authentic and beloved destination continues to attract millions of tourists every year.
So, if you’re chosen Spain for your upcoming holiday, no matter the duration of your trip, you’ll be in for quite an experience!