This Spanish road trip will take you through the beautiful and lush, aptly named Green Spain, hugging the north coast along the Bay of Biscay. From the border with France and through the regions of the Basque Country, Cantabria, Asturias and Galica, you’ll see some of the most picturesque landscapes in Spain, enjoy amazing food and criss-cross the famous Camino de Santiago.
Start in San Sabastian, a sophisticated city with a renowned restaurant scene, famous for sea food and pintxos (pronounced pinchos), which are similar to tapas. Take a gastronomic tour for the best experience. Eat your fill and head west to Bilbao, home of the incredible Guggenhiem museum. The building itself is a work of art, with beautifully curved and sweeping architecture.
Head west, making sure to stop at the cave of El Castillo to see the 35,000 year old drawings there. Continue along the coast to the stunning Santillana del Mar, known as the town of the three lies; not holy (santi), flat (llana) or by the sea (del mar). This medieval town is beautifully preserved and worth a wander before you make your way to Comillas, further along the coast. Traditionally low rise, you’ll find a pretty beach, tiny fishing port and a charming cobbled old centre here. Don’t miss El Caprichio, a Gaudi designed villa. If you have a few extra days, head into the Picos de Europa, the small but perfectly formed mountain range.
Oviedo is the next stop and the starting point of the lesser known Camino Privitivo (the oldest Camino). This compact and elegant city is another foodie delight, with a lively gastronomic scene. Home to Spanish cider (who knew?), you’ll find traditional sidrerías along Calle Gascona, known as cider boulevard. Visit in September for Fiestas de San Mateo, a live theatre and music spectacular. If you go in October, you’ll be in the middle of the Asturias apple harvest.
A Coruna is up next, passing by the spectacular Playa de Las Catedrales en-route. There is so much to do in A Coruna, a dynamic city which is home to a busy modern port, a relaxed beach front resort and an atmospheric old town. The sea food here is some of the freshest and finest in Spain, with sea food tapas being a speciality. Take a walk out to the Tower of Hercules, the least looking lighthouse we have ever seen!
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Finally, you’ll reach Santiago de Compostela, the end point of the famous Camino de Santiago and your last stop. As you enter town, you’ll see pilgrims covering the final few miles into one of the most beautiful cities in Spain, proudly displaying their vieira, the scallop shell badge that you’ll have seen along your route. Twisting alleys, dramatic squares and historic religious buildings make up this labyrinth of a city, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are too many must-sees to list them, consider a walking tour with a local to make the most of the time you have in this gorgeous city.