Whilst they may be milder than in other countries, Spain is definitely a country of four seasons. The heat and beach-life offered by summer in Spain attracts the largest number of tourists, but there are still plenty of great reasons to visit Spain in the other seasons too. Autumn can be a particularly great time to visit Spain, as the temperatures are mild but still warm, crowd levels are wonderfully low, and the country’s landscapes truly come alive with the changing colours of the season. But where should you go and what should you do? Here are our recommendations for the prettiest places to visit in Spain this Autumn:
Val d’Aran, Catalonia
Catalonia’s Aran Valley is best known for its popular ski season, which attracts snow sport enthusiasts from around the world, but visiting in Autumn provides a different but equally as wonderful experience. The dramatic mountain peaks here are perfect for hikers or if you’re looking for a slower pace you can enjoy the views and explore the quaint villages. The valley is also a popular destination for linguists, as they speak Spanish, Catalan and their very own Aranese, a dialect of Occitan which only a few locals speak, here.
La Gomera, Canary Islands
If you just can’t imagine Spain without the sunshine then head to the Canary Islands, which boast year-round sunshine. All of the islands are sunny and perfect for swimming in the sea in Autumn, but if you’re looking for something a little more unusual then the tiny island of La Gomera is the perfect choice for you. This volcanic island is only 22km (14 miles) in diameter, making it small but perfectly formed. Here you’ll find incredible beaches and cliffs, and an incredible array of microhabitats, including a spectacular subtropical rainforest.
Castañar de el Tiemblo, Ávila
Madrid is a great location for a city break no matter the time of year, but if you’re visiting Madrid this autumn then this delightful chestnut forest near Avila is a great place for a day trip. The main draw of the Castanar de el Tiemblo in autumn is the incredible colours. This is considered to be one of the best places in Spain to spot the autumn foliage and the rich colour palette that it offers.
Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park
If you’re looking for autumn foliage, then another great spot to visit is the Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The National Park is best well known for its incredible rock formations, but the colour of the leaves falling from the ancient forests are also worthy of note and make the site well worth visiting at this time of year.
What could be more autumnal than cozying up with a nice glass of wine? And the Penedès wine region where cava is produced is less than one hour’s drive from Barcelona! You can enjoy the wine produced from the early autumn grapes whilst sitting by a roaring fire, and some wineries will even offer segway tours so that you can explore more than one vineyard as part of an adventurous tasting experience.
Sierra de Francia, Castilla y León
Located near the Portuguese border in Castilla y León, Sierra de Francia boasts a host of pretty forests, streams and hidden historic villages. This corner of Spain is beautiful no matter what the time of year but it particularly comes alive during the autumn months when it is particularly vibrant and atmospheric. This region of Spain is rarely visited by tourists so you will be experiencing an authentic and unusual element of life in Spain.
Gorbea Natural Park, Basque Country
Finally, another breathtakingly beautiful autumn forest that you really must explore if you’re in Spain this season is in the north of the Otzarreta forest, located in the natural park surrounding Mount Gorbea in the Basque Country. It is one of the best places in Spain to see the change of colours because its unique shape and structure means that the whole landscape transforms into a palette of vibrant oranges, burnt umbers and deep browns. It’s a fantastic place to visit and popular with photographers hoping to capture the colours of autumn.
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