Passionate, sophisticated and devoted to living the good life, Spain is both a stereotype come to life and a country more diverse than you ever imagined. Spanish landscapes stir the soul, from the jagged Pyrenees and wildly beautiful cliffs of the Atlantic northwest to charming Mediterranean coves, while astonishing architecture spans the ages at seemingly every turn. And then there’s one of Europe’s most celebrated (and varied) gastronomic scenes of seafood, paella, tapas and fine wines. (From Lonely Planet’s The World: A Traveller’s Guide to the Planet)
Best for independent travellers to Spain
This is my guidebook of choice, together with Lonely Planet Spain. Rick doesn’t cover every part of the country – just the places he suggests are worth seeing. Having said that, you can count on Rick Steves to tell you what you really need to know when traveling in Spain. Rick's candid, humorous advice will guide you to good-value hotels and restaurants. He'll help you plan where to go and what to see, depending on the length of your trip. You'll get up-to- date recommendations about what is worth your time and money. More than just reviews and directions, a Rick Steves guidebook is a tour guide in your pocket.
- Detailed and informative self-guided walking tours through towns, museums and attractions
- Rick’s personal recommendations for accomodation and restaurants
Written by locals, Fodor's travel guides have been offering expert advice for all tastes and budgets for more than 80 years. Fodor's Essential Portugal puts the best the country has to offer at your fingertips.
- Dozens of full-colour maps plus a handy pullout map with essential information
- Hundreds of hotel and restaurant recommendations, with Fodor's Choice designating their top picks
- Multiple itineraries to explore the top attractions and what’s off the beaten path
Best for travellers on a tour group
Like the DK Eyewitness gudiebooks, this Insight Guides book is lighter on logistics than the likes of Lonely Planet and Rough Guide, but its a heavy-weight when it comes to background features and stunning photography. Not the book I woudl take with me on a trip, but excellent for trip planning anbd reading up on the country before you go.
- A thoroughly overhauled edition by expert authors.
- Stunning photography brings this exciting country and its people to life.
- Highlights of the country's top attractions, such as the Alhambra and Sagrada Familia, as well as in-depth features on flamenco and Spains dazzling architecture.
Best for road trippers
DK Eyewitness Back Roads: Spain is the ultimate driving travel guide which will take you via scenic routes to discover charming villages, local restaurants and intimate places to stay. Alongside all the practical information you could need, from road conditions and length of drive to parking information and opening hours, DK Eyewitness Back Roads: Spain will help you unearth the real soul of Spain. Pick from twenty-five themed drives, each lasting one to seven days, which reveal breathtaking views, hidden gems and authentic local experiences that can only be discovered by road. Each tour is bursting with insider knowledge and loaded with ideas for varied activities from walks to days on the beach and children's attractions, to wine and cycling trips. Meanwhile, the most friendly, best-value hotels and guesthouses and charming restaurants specialising in regional produce have been selected by expert authors. DK Eyewitness Back Roads Spain has gorgeous photographs throughout, with a pull-out map for easy navigation between tours and even postcode information for use with your Sat Nav.