Our top 10 things to do in Spain

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Christopher Wilson-Elmes

Sawday's Expert

5 min read

Our owners never fail to provide us with suggestions for enticing adventures and experiences. From what could be an almost endless list, we’ve picked ten favourite tips from places in our Spanish collection. Find breathtaking hikes, a fashion museum, a lively summer fair and a lost village serving great coffee. Any one of them could be a destination in itself or a memorable day trip as you enjoy the wonders of Spain.

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Quintessential, white-washed village – South, near(ish) Malaga 

A visit to one of the white-washed villages that cling to slopes across Spain is a must and Iznajar is a fine example. Explore the narrow streets and see stunning views of Lake Iznajar and the surrounding countryside, carpeted with ancient olive trees. The village was also the birthplace of Rafael Pérez del Alamo (sometimes known as, Pérez del Llano), a socialist who led an uprising against the monarchy in the 1860s. 

Recommended by Maki and Clive of Finca las Encinas  

View our special places to stay in Málaga >


Mont-Rebei Gorge Hike, North, near Zaragoza 

The Mont-Rebei Gorge offers a perfect combination of risk, adventure, and cardio, all packed into a concise day trip. It’s a 17km out-and-back route with opportunities for further exploration if you’re looking for more action. Some sections are not for the faint hearted, with paths cut high into cliffs, no handrails and the river rushing below. It is absolutely stunning though, with the pale water and the depth of the gorge giving it an otherworldly look. 

Recommended by Mireia of Casa Leonardo 


Gaucin August fair, South, near Marbella  

Once a simple seasonal gathering based on the movement of livestock, the fair now includes processions of horses, street food stalls, games, fireworks and even reenactments of Napoleonic battles! It’s a riot of colour and sound played out in the splendid setting of the “balcony of the serrania”, with views that take in three countries on two continents. 

Recommended by Philippa of Molino del Carmen 

The lost village of Acebuchal, South, near Nerja 

The village of Acebuchal was never huge, reaching a peak of around 200 inhabitants even at its height. What sets it apart is that it was completely abandoned in the late 40s, during the Spanish Civil War. Most places would never have come back from so total a loss, but Acebuchal was lucky. In the 90s, two direct descendants of the last people to live there decided to try and rebuild and revive the village. They succeeded and it is now a wonderful place to visit, contemplate the meaning of life and have a great coffee. 

Recommeded by Paul of Villa Mimosa

View our special places to stay in Nerja >


Bird watching, north, near Burgos

Birdwatching walks among the limestone outcrops and deep canyons cut by the Ebro and other rivers in the Parque Natural de las Hoces del Alto Ebro y Rudrón Nature Reserve, are incredible both for the diversity of birdlife you can see and the landscape itself. Various species of vultures, eagles, falcons, crows and choughs, martins, swifts, and others have made their homes here and every season brings different visitors, behaviour and colour to the wilderness and wildlife. 

Recommended by Valvanera and Javier of Posada Molino del Canto 


Hermitage in a volcano crater, north, near Barcelona 

The Garrotxa Volcanic Natural Park is an area of rare natural interest and beauty, but the standout feature has to be the volcano Santa Margarita, where a hermitage was built in the middle of the crater. Signposted walking routes from a surprisingly nearby car park make visiting easier than you’d think, and you can take longer routes to places where the volcanic rock strata are visible. The hermitage is an eerie place, sitting down in its deep, wooded bowl. You can see exactly why it was chosen as a place to sit and think! 

Recommended by Joan of El Nus de Pedra

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The Balenciaga Museum. North, near (not very) Bilbao 

In his hometown museum, discover how the son of a fisherman and a seamstress became tailor to a marchioness, eventually relocating to Paris and gaining global renown. Givenchy called him “the architect of Haute Couture”, and Chanel described him as “the only true couturier”. See the story of his life and many of his most famous designs laid out in fittingly fabulous style. 

Recommended by Gonzalo of Hotel Iturregi 


The cascades of the Huéznar river, central, north of Seville 

As the Huéznar River runs between strange limestone formations, known as travertinos, in the hills north-east of Seville, it splinters and leaps over mossy rocks in a series of short cascades. One of the best things about visiting is that the falls are just off the Sierra Norte Greenway, one of the many former railway lines that have been converted into easy cycling routes, so they’re easily accessible to most people.  

Recommended by Dirk of Loz Pozos de la Nieve

View our special places to stay in Seville >


The Nerja Caves, south, near Nerja 

In 1959, a group of local boys stumbled across these incredible caves on the coast while exploring. The largest of the caverns, simply called The Nerja Cave, is 700m at its longest point, but it’s the imposingly named Hall of Cataclysm that steals the show, with its 60m height and craggy stalactites, one of which is often claimed to be the world’s largest.  

Recommended by Dan of Rustic cottage 

El Caminito del Rey, south, near Malaga 

Originally built as a means for workers at two hydroelectric power plants to move between sites, El Caminito has become a spectacular if somewhat hair-raising tourist attraction. Wooden walkways seemingly attached to cliff faces by magic, long bridges over stomach-churning gorges and head-spinning heights make this an exhilarating hike. At only 3km, it’s not the longest walk you’ll ever take on, but certainly one of the most memorable. Trips must be booked, but this at least reassures you that the path is well monitored and maintained! 

Recommended by Marylynne & Gillian of Cortijo las Rosas 

View our special places to stay in Málaga >

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Christopher Wilson-Elmes

Sawday's Expert

Chris is our in-house copywriter, with a flair for turning rough notes and travel tales into enticing articles. Raised in a tiny Wiltshire village, he was desperate to travel and has backpacked all over the world. Closer to home, he finds himself happiest in the most remote and rural places he can find, preferably with a host of animals to speak to, some waves to be smashed about in and the promise of a good pint somewhere in his future.
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