Spain is a true paradise for travelers seeking an active adventure with great landscape diversity and a pleasant climate. Offering world class white water rafting in the Catalan Pyrenees, legendary surf at Mundaka, rugged bike routes of Picos de Europa and kite surfing in Tarifa, Spain has its share of sweet spots for adventure seekers. Here are a few of our favorites:
Not far from the French border in the Basque Country is the legendary surfing spot known as Mundaka. Located about 40 minutes northeast of Bilbao, Mundaka is a stop on the Billabong Pro Surf Tour and attracts people from around the world with its cylindrical waves which produce ideal surfing conditions. The best surf spot is located between Guernika and Bermeo. It’s visible from the road and easy to find; unlike the town itself.
Picos de Europa
In Northern Spain, in the region west of Santander, you’ll find the Picos de Europa mountains. Emerging from a coastal landscape between the green north of Spain and the more arid Castille, the Picos de Europa are the most impressive mountains in Spain. Biking enthusiasts can arrange for a transfer inland, to the mountain road just above San Roque, from which one can enjoy a free wheeling descent along the River Miera to the Bay of Santander. The scenery along the way changes from the dramatic limestone cliffs and peaceful rolling green pastures to the sight of the approaching coastline. Formed by three limestone massifs, the central massif, Urriello, also known as Naranjo de Bulnes, is probably the most famous. Its west face, in particular, holds an attraction for climbers and mountaineers from around the world.
Very popular with adventure enthusiasts is the town of Sort located in the Catalan Pyrenees about 4 hours from Barcelona. With a great location and stunning scenery, Sort offers a range of outstanding activities most of which are based on and around the Noguera Palleresa River. Visitors can negotiate a kayak downstream or take on the Noguera’s numerous rapids for a white water rafting adventure that is, perhaps, the best white water rafting anywhere in Europe. If that’s not enough action on the water, those looking for more can try hydrospeeding. Sort is also a great spot if you’re into canyoning with many opportunities to slide, jump, and abseil down a canyon.
Tarifa is a Moorish village located in the south of Andalusia on the southern most tip of Europe. The strong prevailing winds which keep the temperatures mild all year round and the fantastic and rather empty beaches attract windsurfers, kite surfers and surfers from around the world. In addition, Tarifa is a mecca for other outdoor adventure activities such as rock climbing, trekking and mountain biking. The positioning of Tarifa also makes for ideal conditions for extreme airborne sports like hang gliding and microlight aircraft flying.