If you’re heading to Spain in the near future, please take me with you! As one of my favourite places in the world, I’ve visited it many times, and picked up a few hints along the way – which I will gladly pass on to you good folks.
But first off, the key to really appreciating the Spanish culture, country, and cuisine is understanding its history, religion, and language. Brush up on those, follow the following tips, and you’ll be right as rain… talking of which:
1. The Rain In Spain Falls Mainly In Andalucia
Depending on when and where you’re heading in Spain, check the forecasts for that time of year, as it can be quite temperamental – and you’ll need to pack accordingly.
If you’re travelling in summer it’s pretty much guaranteed to be hot, but a small umbrella can be handy when hit by a massive deluge, especially in the north, but equally as important is high factor sun screen lotion – which is really needed here, and is really expensive!
In other words, pack for the season, and the region.
If you’re heading to Spain in summer, you’ll be prepared for some heat, but a travel fan (you can find these on Amazon) can make all the difference, especially when you’re travelling on a budget, and none of the rooms have air-con or any cooling apparatus – these events are based on a true story!
3. Carry On
You’ve heard it all before, that bag snatchers can be an issue in some parts of Spain, and although it’s true, there’s nothing to be scared of, just be sensible!
If you’re going to be wandering around all day, take a zipped bag which you can wear over your shoulders, so it’s not easy to snatch – and more importantly, keep a strap wrapped round you wherever you are.
Some people suggest religious badges/icons pinned to your bags to deter any devout criminals, but in our experience these are unlikely to make a difference to someone who really needs the money!
Padlocks for bags are also a good idea, even if you are leaving them in secure accommodation when you go out.
4. Sensible Shoes
If you’re going to Spain to see architecture, visit museums, sample food (and let’s face it, they’re the main reasons most of us go) you’ll need decent walking shoes. This is no time to be making a fashion statement with the latest Manolo Blahniks, as many of the streets are cobblestones and as such, are a killer on your feet!
But it’s always a good idea to have some decent shoes as well if you’re going to hit the town, as the Spanish do like to look good (and you’ll want to fit in), and many bars and clubs won’t let you in with sneakers on anyway.
5. Socket To Them
If you must bring electronic or electric equipment with you on your travels to Spain, well you must bring an adaptor too. You’ll need one with a round two pin option. Don’t buy them at the airport where they are super expensive unless money isn’t an issue for you!
6. Be ‘Prepapered’
If you’re of a more sensitive disposition, take your own preferred toilet paper with you, as the Spanish brands can be a tad on the rough side.
But more importantly, always have tissues on hand, as the restocking of toilet rolls in restaurants, bars, and touristy sites seems to be an irregular past-time, so it’s always better to be safe than sorry!
7. Medical Conditions
The pharmacies in Spain stock all the medicines you may need, which are mostly cheaper than your home town, and in most cases you don’t even need a prescription, but brand make-up and deodorant are oddly expensive!
8. Plug It Up
The people of Spain live very different hours to us, with few going out to dinner until after 10pm, and there seems to be an apparent lack of noise control at ungodly hours, so if you’re a light sleeper, earplugs may keep you sane!
9. Book It
If you’re an avid reader, take a few books or boost your Kindle library, as trying to find English language books in Spain is like the proverbial needle in a haystack – and if you do, they’re usually pretty terrible and can cost a fortune!
The most important thing to take to Spain is a relaxed attitude and an understanding that the pace of life is a little different from what you’re used to – oddly enough they drive like it’s the end of the world, but for everything else there’s the slower style of Spanish time. So be prepared for the mañana mindset – everything can happen a little later than planned!
There are many reasons why Spain is always in the top 10 countries to visit; its main cities are booming with tourists, the countryside is alive with visitors, and if you heed the above advice you’ll probably become its número uno fan too! If you’d like to brush up on some much-needed Spanish before you jet off, take our free level test to see exactly how much you know!
And for those of you who have been there already, and have more advice on what to bring with, send us a few tips in the comments section below!