Spain has more than 3,000 miles of coastline and 60 islands while boasting more Blue Flag beaches than any other country in the world. So, if you’re looking to enjoy sun, sea, and sand, there’s really nowhere better in the world. But visiting the beach is so much more than laying back on a sunbed and topping up your tan!
In this post, we’ll look at ten of the best beach activities you can enjoy in Spain. Whether you’re hitting the Costa Blanca, the Costa del Sol, the Balearics or the Canaries, you’re sure to have a great beach vacation. Let’s check out what you can do on your trip!
Thanks to its location, Spain is considered one of the best surfing locations in Europe. There’s a lot of variation too, with surf spots from the very north of the country to the Canary Islands off the west coast of Africa. The most famous spot is arguably Mundaka in the Basque Country, while there are impressive spots in Galicia, Asturias, and Cantabria too. Some of the northern beaches are more suited to intermediate and advanced surfers, but if you’re looking to ride your first waves, perhaps consider looking at Corralejo in Fuerteventura. Spain’s surf seasons run from autumn until spring, in line with the rest of Europe.
Stand up Paddle Boarding
If you like the look of surfing but fancy something a little more chilled, why not turn your attention to stand up paddle boarding? You certainly won’t be the only one, as it’s the fastest growing water sport in the world. Beginning in Hawaii in the 1940s, Paddle boarding is a wonderful way to discover a new part of the world while giving your core muscles a workout. While SUPing is popular on rivers and flatwater lakes (especially for beginners) there are a few beaches where you can try regular SUP or even surf SUP. Check out Lanzarote in the Canary Islands and Nerja in Andalucia. Don’t forget, dogs love paddle boarding too – so take your pup with you!
While you can kitesurf in a number of locations in Spain, you’ll want to check out Tarifa first. On the southern coast of Spain right on the Strait of Gibraltar, this is the most popular place to kitesurf in Europe. The Andalusia town has great conditions year round, but the best time to come is between May and October. With 300 days of sun a year, you’re unlikely to have your kitesurfing adventure rained off. If you can’t get to Tarifa, the Canary Islands offer awesome kitesurf conditions too.
Something that can be annoying about water sports is the expense and difficulty of moving around equipment. However, that’s not the case with swimming. All you need is a swimsuit, perhaps some goggles, and you’re good to go! And where better for a dip than the warm, blue, and largely calm waters of the Mediterranea Sea? Almeria’s beaches and those of the Balearic islands are some of the most sought after for those who want to swim as part of their trip. If you feel you can brave the cold, try Playa de Melide in Galicia’s Isla de Ons. The Atlantic waters might have you wishing for a wetsuit!
This white knuckle water sport might not be on everyone’s bucket list. Especially if you’re afraid of heights! However, for tourists who want an adrenaline rush, look no further. Parasailing involves being strapped to the back of a speedboat and attached to a parachute. The faster the speedboat goes, the higher up in the air you’ll be! It’s a thoroughly exciting way to look down at the Costa del Sol or the Costa Brava.
One that you’ll find on the more touristy beaches of the Costa Blanca and the Costa del Sol, banana-boat is a water sport that you can enjoy with your friends and family. You’ll have to hold on to the long yellow boat (wonder how it got its name?) with your legs for dear life, in the hope that you’ll cling on! This super fun activity is quite short, so you can enjoy it, combine it with a day of chilling out if necessary.
With snorkelling spots throughout the country, grab your mask and breathing tube and get ready to be wowed by the marine diversity off Spain’s coast. A great activity to do as a family, the most popular snorkelling (and scuba diving) spot in Spain is the Costa Brava’s Medes Islands. One of the most beautiful marine reserves in the Mediterranean, you’ll be able to see a range of brightly coloured fish and even octopus!
Enjoy world-class food
Visiting the beach doesn’t have to be all about getting wet or getting your pulse racing. For those who are heading to San Sebastian, a rather different delight awaits. La Concha Beach, which the city backs onto, is considered one of the 12 treasures of Spain. As well as being one of the country’s most beautiful beaches, there are several spots you can enjoy the region’s typical foods that it’s famous for. Whether you want to duck into a backstreet tapas bar for a pintxo or enjoy some Michelin Star cuisine, you’ll have no trouble finding somewhere to eat.
Last but not least, with all the exciting things to do on Spain’s beaches, it’s easy to forget what you originally came for. While banana boating, parasailing, and stand up paddle boarding are a lot of fun, be sure to take some time to relax on the golden or white sands and enjoy the company of your fellow travellers, or perhaps get lost in your latest book. Whatever making the most of Spain’s beaches looks like to you, be sure to indulge in it!