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What to See and Do in Spain

  1. By John
  2. On Oct 30, 2018
  3. Europe
  4. Travel Tips

As evidence of its distinctiveness, here are several things that you can only do in Spain and nowhere else on the planet.

What to See and Do in Spain

Catedral de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago

Spain is full of incredible cathedrals, but the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela has a very special component. Not only is the Cathedral the burial spot of St. James, one of the 12 apostles, but it’s also the ending point of the Camino de Santiago (the Way of St. James), a pilgrimage of about 800 kilometers (500 miles) that many take through northern Spain. Completed in 1211, this Baroque and Romanesque church features 80-meter (260-foot) high bell towers that rise above the city.

Insider tip: Pay the extra few euros to take the rooftop tour. It’s worth it to see the grand views of Santiago de Compostela.

Madrid

Europe's third-most populated metropolis (after London and Berlin), Madrid feels like many cities in one. It can exude Old World elegance, with its wide boulevards, manicured parks and royal palaces.

But venture into up-and-coming neighborhoods like Conde Duque or Lavapiés, and you're suddenly in Spain's incubator for the latest fashion and design trends.

Insider tip: While Cava Baja may be Madrid's most touristed tapas street, Calle Ponzano, in the Chamberí neighborhood, is where the locals go for late-night snacks.

When to go: Madrid's soul-satisfying comfort food tastes best in the cold-weather months. On Devour Madrid's Ultimate Spanish Cuisine Tour, you can taste an unctuous meat-and-chickpea stew called cocido madrileño, which simmers in clay pots over a charcoal stove at the legendary restaurant La Bola.