When we started our travel business 15 years ago, we were planning lots of “once-in-a-lifetime” trips to Spain and our job was to make sure that all the “must-sees” were included on each itinerary. So much has changed since then. Because air travel has become much more affordable and it’s so easy to fly into new regional destinations, many of our clients are actively looking to avoid the “must-see” sights in exchange for something much more personal, new and fresh.
We are huge fans of a busy city break or a long weekend of pampering but sometimes our bodies and our brains need a complete change of pace, a place to de-compress from our busy schedules, in a location where time seems to last longer or has stopped altogether. When we need one of those days, we know just where to go – one of the many beautiful walled towns in Spain. That’s where we put all our day-to-day concerns on hold, we step back in time and really absorb the history and the architecture. We’re not talking about sleepy hollows or museum-like communities. Spain’s walled towns are lively places where real families live and go to school and run businesses. Here’s our list of Spain’s most interesting and enjoyable walled towns – perfect for a daytrip or that mid-week break you’ve been promising yourself for ages.
It’s no wonder we are obsessed about wine here at Totally Spain. Spain is the world’s largest producer of wine and the country with the largest number of vineyards in the world – a whopping 13 percent of the world’s vineyards are on Spanish soil. We love telling our clients that after cereals and olives, the grape is Spain’s most cultivated crop – and the one we probably spend most time talking (and thinking) about.
Nothing says holidays more than a car, a suitcase, sunglasses, and the open road. And here in Spain, we have a wonderful road infrastructure including shiny new three-lane highways that get you out of the cities and plenty of those romantic rural roads that snake around the mountain ridges and coastal cliffs.
At Totally Spain we admire the work of the Great Wine Capitals Network (GWC) and have entered its Guest Bloggers Program competition for the past two years. Last year was the first year and we were very proud to have our entry included but alas no joy. This year, we entered again. And we WON!
September is a fantastic month to visit Spain. Not so hot, not so crowded and when much of the Northern hemisphere is switching on the heating and getting out the boots and sweaters, you are still able to enjoy a day out on the sea or a hike and picnic in the hills.
We’re just back from a lovely trip to Galicia and want to share some of the great reasons to visit the North West of Spain. This time, we chose the Rias Baixas area as our base and toured the vicinity as well as going north to Santiago de Compostela and south to the Cies Islands. We re-visited some destinations we love, tried out some great new places, ate extremely well and enjoyed some delicious white wine. Read about our trip below and let us help you plan where to go in Galicia.
We’ve been busy following a number of bloggers trips to Cantabria and are not surprised how much they LOVE the region. They’re not alone. It’s getting a bit busy here and the season is only just beginning. In addition to the surfers and fans of sailing that are starting to arrive into the bay of Santander, we also have the lecturers and students registering for the UIMP Summer university. Yip, it’s Summertime in Santander
Rather like its wine, the region of La Rioja in Northern Spain is an elegant and very traditional region – nothing too brash or overly showy here. It’s famous for its ruby red wine – it was the first region to achieve ‘Denominacion de Origin’ (DO) in Spain but it’s also well known here for its cuisine and charming countryside.
For some very good reason the powers that be at Vitoria Airport in the Basque Country have decided to put on a couple of direct flights between New York JFK and Vitoria, the capital of the Basque Country in October 2014. Yes, you read right – two flights (not a year round service). So New Yorkers will be able to fly directly to the Basque Country in Northern Spain without having to connect in Madrid or Barcelona. Iberia and American Airlines are the airlines operating these unique and unusual connections. So while Basques get to taste the Big Apple, New Yorkers can sink their teeth into the famous Basque pintxos and wash them down with some wines from the neighbouring Rioja region. What are you waiting for?