Madrid: Center of Spain
With a population of over three million, Madrid is a big, modern city in central Spain. The suburbs of Madrid are very modern and not particularly interesting. Make it to the center of the city, however, and you are in for a treat. Small alleys, hidden squares and odd little shops are the norm. In this center, you will find a vibrant public life with outdoor cafes literally overrun with the passionate and interesting people of Madrid. When visiting the city, keep in mind it is very hot in the summer and pretty cold in the winter.
One of my favorite travel destinations, Barcelona is a costal city oozing charm. The city embodies all of the interesting little oddities of Spain with ancient streets where the local hobby is people watching. The city is also the home of best Gaudi architecture in Spain. Gaudi was either a genius or a madman, but there is no denying his architecture is unique. I would describe it as a mix between dripping candles and normal architecture. The big tourist attraction, of course, is the Sagrada Familia church, but better examples can be seen by just walking through neighborhoods. Yep, his work is throughout the city. The only downside to Barcelona is a trend of modernization. While modernization is generally okay, I think it is taking a bit away from the historic charm of Barcelona.
If you’re looking to sit on the beach all day and party the night away, Ibiza is the hottest spot in Europe. An island off the coast of Spain, Ibiza is the rare tourist spot where monstrous tourist hotels don’t dominate. Instead, you’ll find yourself staying in rented rooms, little hotels and hostels in Ibiza Town. During the days, it’s all about enjoying the beaches. At night, the bars and clubs of the island are world famous and they never really seem to close. Bring plenty of aspirin!
If you’re going to visit Spain, you can’t really go wrong. If time is short, Madrid, Barcelona and Ibiza are three spots worth seeing.