Seeing Spain for a steal

Spain is a culturally rich destination known for its beautiful coastlines, diverse landscapes, historical legacy, vibrant culture and excellent infrastructure. It also has the third-most World Heritage Sites after Italy and China, and is a safe destination for solo travellers. Add to that the abundance of great food, fun activities and festivals, and it’s not difficult to see why Spain is one of the most visited countries in the world.

It’s also an affordable destination. Its tapas culture makes affordable eating a breeze and getting around is also simple and cheap.

One of the best ways to see the country is by rail. It’s a romantic way to experience the stunning Spanish landscape, moving from city to city with only splendid passing scenes to occupy your time. And again – it’s great value for money.

Interrail has released a series of new routes specifically geared to older travellers. Simply step aboard, relax and enjoy the romance of rail travel. Experience the countryside, culture, people and landscapes comfortably, thanks to a train network that can take you from north to south, and east to west of the Iberian Peninsula.

Interrail tours include train bookings, advanced seat selection, taxi transfers, luggage transport services, and trips in fewer than five hours per journey that will have you arrive in the middle of the city.

You’ll also get exclusive discounts on tourist attractions and other features to help you make the most of the destinations on your itinerary.

You can create a custom route that suits your preferences, to Córdoba, Cuenca, Cádiz, Málaga, Granada, Burgos, Salamanca, León, Zamora, Cáceres, Mérida, Zafra, Mazagón, Úbeda, Baeza, Jaén, Ronda, Bilbao, Santillana del Mar, Llanes, Oviedo, Santiago de Compostela, Toledo, Ávila and Segovia.

Or you could select a special route for older travellers. There are nine tours specifically catering to older travellers, starting from A$630 for four days.

The Northern Spain seven-day rail tour starts in Madrid or Bilbao, and takes you to Santillana del Mar, Llanes, Oviedo and Santiago de Compostela Madrid or Bilbao, and finishes in Madrid. On this tour, you’ll visit the Guggenheim Museum, see ancient rock art, wander along pristine beaches and see old villages and amazing architecture, all while dining on sumptuous Spanish cuisine and sipping sangria.

The five-day Paradores World Heritage tour takes you to Toledo, Cuenca, Ávila and Segovia, where you’ll encounter stunning UNESCO world heritage cities and beautiful landscapes, staying in luxurious hotels along the way.

Or you could take in some of Spain’s lesser known marvels on the four-day Paradores tour through Cuenca, Cordoba and Cadiz.

While Interrail is one great way to see Spain, saving your travel money doesn’t have to stop there. Picking up a Tourist Card will get you into more attractions, with unlimited use of public transport, admission to museums, and even discounts on shows and shopping. Dining will also be more affordable, with restaurants affiliated with selected tourist cards offering discounts of five to 10 per cent.

Already affordable, seeing Spain can be even cheaper (and relaxing) with a little bit of planning and foresight.

Have you been to Spain? Can you recommend any attractions or experiences to our members?

Related articles:
Small-town Spain
Travel SOS: Driving in Spain
Best destinations for solo travellers

Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca has worked in publishing and media in one form or another for around 25 years. He's a voracious reader, word spinner and art, writing, design, painting, drawing, travel and photography enthusiast. You'll often find him roaming through galleries or exploring the streets of his beloved Melbourne and surrounding suburbs, sketchpad or notebook in hand, smiling.
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