Spain is the second largest country in the European Union, and by this, I’m sure Spain wouldn’t disappoint you with all the activities, destinations, and other unknown grandeurs it has to offer whatever the season may be. It has a lot of beaches to satisfy your tropical island living dreams, cultural and heritage sites to feed your old wandering soul, mountains to let you be on top of the world, and vast vegetation that caresses all the flora and fauna you could ever think of.
While Spain is widely known for its balmy holidays by the beach, tourists and locals alike still dare to go beyond its horizons by exploring what else it has to in store when the sun stops kissing their skin and seasons change. Save for fall season where every corner of a place gets more serene and intimate than ever. Here, I listed 10 outdoor activities for you to try should you are planning a trip to Spain in this time of the year.
The humble region of Murcia is probably one of the roads less traveled in Spain. It is often overlooked, but lo and behold, Cartagena is here is to change the game. It has an ancient Roman theatre built between 5 and 1 BC that tells an interesting history lesson for every visitor, making this undisturbed site more enticing to visit in during the fall season.
More so, this major naval station in south-eastern Spain holds an annual jazz festival that you surely don’t want to miss out. In the past year, there were about 20 concerts held in the city that people jammed altogether in such as Off Jazz and Jazz Callejero.
Crafted into a masterpiece, Marqués de Riscal Hotel is created by no other than Frank Gehry. The 5-star hotel’s architectural design includes Gehry’s remarkable works of art such as tilted walls, cathedral-tall ceilings, and crooked windows. It has 43 rooms and suites that will not only satisfy your weary senses but will also take you to another dimension of art.
And the best part? It is perfectly situated in La Rioja, the autonomous community of Spain where the world-renowned wine industry is king. Different kinds of local wineries are found here. Meaning, more wine for you to gulp down while you are having the best staycation in your life yet. To book a stay, click here.
Located in South Catalonia, Penedès is a wine region that is considered as one of the most ancient areas and one of the greatest wine producing regions in Europe. It is known for its Cava production or the sparkling wine, oak-aged reds, and different kinds of white grape. While you are here, you can tour around the vineyard like a boss through the Segway or a two-wheeled personal vehicle with a platform for a more entertaining time around. After which, gulp down on a glass or two of wine goodness for a job well done.
La Gomera, otherwise known as “Isla Mágica” or the magic island, is the second smallest island of the seven Canary Islands. Though small, this one is small but terrible, as the old adage goes. The volcanic island showcases a number of cliffs, secluded beaches, the humble village of La Calera, a bursting vegetation found in Garajonay National Park, rock climbing opportunities in Roque de Agando, museums and parks like Torre del Conde, and hiking activities in Parque natural de Majona.
The quaint island is without a doubt the serene retreat you have been wanting to put yourself into. It is a destination that is almost forgotten by time and people, but it’s never too late to discover what La Gomera has in store for you. Give it a chance, and you’ll be surprised to know why was it dubbed as the magic island of all the seven islands.
No, we are not moving to France. Sierra de Francia is still in Spain, found near the Portuguese border. This particular side of the country entails sightings of cultural villages like La Alberca, lush forests, and pure bodies of water. Sierra de Francia is not frequented by tourists, which makes it a well-kept gem that you should discover while everyone else is busy on the other parts of Spain.
Val d’Aran got its name from the Basque term “Haran,” meaning valley. True enough, it is an administrative entity in Catalonia where the breathtaking Aran Valley can be found. Its dramatic peaks reflect on the only waters of Catalan river that flow directly into the Atlantic Ocean. Here, you can also chance upon on the rare animals in the wilderness such as brown bear, bearded vulture, Aran rock lizard, and rock ptarmigan.
Interestingly, Val d’Aran is also a good place to learn a new language or two. It is a multilingual destination where locals speak Spanish, Aranese, Catalan, and their own dialect Occitan.
Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park wouldn’t be a UNESCO World Heritage Site for nothing. The protected area boasts of its spellbinding mountain range, expansive tropical forests, and bustling flora and fauna such as oaks, birches, royal owl, bearded vulture, golden eagle, water-mole, and boar.
What is more, you could get lost in the vastness of sites like Cirque de Soaso, La Brèche de Roland, Cilindro de Marboré, Monte Perdido and Soum de Ramond. If this is your kind of walk in the park, then you might as well add this to your to-do list when in Spain during the fall season. You won’t fall short in beauty, I promise!
Castañar de El Tiemblo is the place to be when you are looking for a quiet retreat and an Instagrammable place in one location. The captivating chestnut forest is evident, made more beautiful by the rays of the sun flashing through its leaves. It can get crowded on the weekends, so be sure to make time in between working week to visit here. Its autumnal colors will make you want to just pack your things, pitch up a tent, and have a glorious picnic while immersing yourself in its beauty.
Andalusia is a region of divergence. It has pristine beaches, deserts, and ancient cities that will transport you to the high fantasy film series of Long of the Rings, among others. The landscape of the some of its locations is brimming with oak forests and ancient structures, making every bit of the place feel like you are transported back in the heyday of 8th to 15th century. Here in Andalusia, you can also visit sites such as its capital city Seville, Córdoba, Granada, and Málaga.
Menorca, a small island found in the Mediterranean Sea, is where you would want to be when you want to experience a fun culture with a little bit of exercising and traditional festivities like no other. The locals here love to play football and horseback riding, to name a few. There is also a festival right before All Saint’s Day where sweets called panellets that contains marzipan and pine nuts can be feasted on. Sounds like a plan, yes?
Mikee Pascual is a Filipino travel and lifestyle writer who is gradually shifting from a sedentary life to a nomadic one. She dreams of traveling to all 81 provinces in the Philippines and having her own book, hostel, and restaurant someday. Keep track of her world through her words at World In My Words.