• Travel Guide

    Travel Guide | Spain

    spain

    Spain, a country on Europe’s Iberian Peninsula. It includes 17 autonomous regions with diverse geography and cultures. Capital city Madrid is home to the Royal Palace and Prado museum, housing works by European masters. Segovia has a medieval castle (the Alcázar) and an intact Roman aqueduct. Catalonia’s capital, Barcelona, is defined by Antoni Gaudí’s whimsical modernist landmarks like the Sagrada Família church.

    Basic info & culture

    CURRENCY

    In Spain, the main currency is Euros. I didn’t get any Euros out before I went and instead I used my Monzo card when purchasing things. I use Monzo which is an app based bank account and contactless card. (There are lots of similar ones to choose from though). It also alerts you once you’ve used the card and gives you the current exchange rate on purchases too. I prefer keeping track of my expenses by using the app over having receipts printed. This makes it easier for me to calculate how much I’ve spent.

    Top Tip:
    Download the app “Currency Plus” to get currency conversions on the go. It updates daily and when connected to WiFi or Network to give you the latest conversion and you can have multiple currencies shown in one go.

    Download here: Apple App Store // Google Play Store

    LANGUAGE

    In Spain, they speak English and Spanish. If you know a little Spanish, it really does go a long way. Even knowing Hello, Thank you and Please – it really does help. Below I will leave some helpful Spanish phrases and words to help you get by. I would recommend downloading a translating app to help you learn words as you go along or refreshing your knowledge from school before you go.

    • Hello – Hola
    • Goodbye – Adios
    • Thank you – Gracias
    • Thank you very much – Muchos Gracias
    • Yes – Si
    • No – Non
    • Good-Morning – Buenos Dias
    • Good Afternoon – Buenas Tardes
    • Good Night – Buenas Noches
    • The bill please? – La cuenta, por favor
    • Please – Por favor
    • I’m sorry – Lo siento
    • I don’t speak Spanish – No hablo Español
    • You’re welcome – De nada
    RELIGION

    Catholic Christianity is the largest religion in Spain, but practical secularization is strong. Only 3% of Spaniards consider religion as one of their three most important values, even lower than the 5% European average. The Spanish Constitution of 1978 abolished Catholicism as the official state religion, while recognizing the role it plays in Spanish society. As a result, there is no official religion and religious freedom is protected.

    TIMEZONE

    Spain has two time zones which are Central European Time (GMT+01:00) and Central European Summer Time (GMT+02:00). However in the Canary Islands, the time zone is Western European Time (GMT+00:00) and Western European Summer Time (GMT+01:00) and follows the UK with it’s time zones.

    CUISINE

    Food and eating out in Spain is amazing. There are so many places to eat out at and so many yummy dishes to try. In Spain you definitely need to eat tapas and paella – and lots of it. Eating out in Spain is known to be very late. Most places won’t be open in the mornings depending on what they serve foodwise. The typical time to eat out is past 8pm and as late as possible. As they have siestas around 4-5pm and then go out later in the evening.


    BUDGET TIPS

    Suggested Daily Budget – 40-45 EUR 45-50 GBP – Whilst in Madrid I spent around £222.65 during our 5 days there. This is a rough guide of how much I spent on meals, public transport and general shopping. Using my money savings tips below, you can help keep your spending down and find great deals.

    01. Use public transport only when needed – Walking saves the pennies and keeps you active. There is nothing better than getting active and seeing the location you’re staying in.

    02. Have a big breakfast or lunch – Eating more at the start of the day will hopefully keep you going through til dinner meaning you’ll be spending less money on meals.

    03. Order lots of small tapas dishes – Rather than ordering one massive dish, why not try ordering lots of small tapas dishes or a couple at a time so you don’t waste food or money until you’re full up.

    04. Watch out for what time you book your Uber – We noticed that the later you leave your Uber, the more it costs. The difference between 11pm and 12am was quite a difference in price.


    Travel tips

    VISAS

    You won’t need a visa to visit Spain no matter where you are travelling from. But you may need to fill in an immigration card.

    INJECTIONS

    You do not need any injections to visit Spain.

    CAPITAL/CITY

    The capital of Spain is Madrid. Most people seem to think the capital is Barcelona and rightly so. But it’s actually Madrid. Spain has lots of cities which include Barcelona, Seville, Toledo, Valencia, Bilbao, Granada and many more.

    ACCOMMODATION

    There are so many hotels and accomodation across Spain depending on where you are planning to stay. These can vary from major hotel chains, AirBnB’s, homestays or hostels. Make sure you check out AirBnB and also TripAdvisor for booking your hotel or hostel.

    ACCOMMODATION I’VE STAYED IN:


    Barcélo Imagine, Madrid
    Hotel GF Isabel, Tenerife
    Hotel Catalonia, Barcelona


    spain

    EXPLORE SPAIN
    Barcelona | Tenerife | Madrid | Mallorca 

    DRIVING

    It’s quite easy to drive around in Spanish countries especially if you’ve done it before. We hired a car whilst in Tenerife but whilst in Mallorca, Barcelona and Madrid we didn’t. But we used plenty of public transport. I will have a post up about Madrid’s public transport very soon.

    FLIGHTS

    Flights to Spain can be from any major city across the world or from having a stopover in a major city. If you are coming from somewhere smaller. Be sure to search Skyscanner to find your best time to fly from which airport you are flying into.

    PUBLIC TRANSPORT

    We used quite a bit of public transport whilst in Madrid, which was very easy to get around and use. We also walked quite a bit as well to get to the different attractions.

    READ MORE: Transport In Madrid | How To Get Around

    BOOK YOUR FLIGHT HERE…


    Packing Tips

    WHAT TO WEAR

    You can wear pretty much anything in Spain, of course depending on the weather. Spain is known for it’s humid and warm weather. This makes it perfect for a summer or quick winter getaway. You can pretty much wear anything you like to correspond with the weather.

    WEATHER

    The weather in Spain is known to be humid and warm. I love visiting Spain from around September onwards to get away from the colder weather in the UK. Spain vary rarely gets rain during it’s warmer months.

    SPAIN WEATHER


    Activities & things to see

    ACTIVITIES & THINGS TO DO

    There is so much to do in Spain from exploring the cities to trying all of the yummy food. I definitely recommend visiting the various museums across Spain. Try traditional delicacies, explore the sights and many more.

    HIGHLIGHTS OF SPAIN:
    • Estadio Santiago Bernabéu – Madrid
    • Mercado de San Miguel – Madrid
    • Royal Palace of Madrid – Madrid
    • El Retiro Park – Madrid
    • Plaza Mayor – Madrid
    • Temple of Debod – Madrid
    • Estadio Camp Nou – Barcelona
    • Park Güell – Barcelona
    • La Sagrada Familia – Barcelona
    • Mercado de La Boqueria – Barcelona
    • Mount Tiede – Tenerife
    • Masca Gorge – Tenerife
    • Los Mercedes Forest – Tenerife

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    Travel Guide | Spain