your guide to Europe off the beaten path

Category: Spain

Holidaying in Ibiza With Some Top Tips

Synonymous with clubbers, Ibiza is one of the party capitals of the world. However, holidaying in Ibiza has a lot more to offer besides absolutely, brilliant nights out and is…

Synonymous with clubbers, Ibiza is one of the party capitals of the world. However, holidaying in Ibiza has a lot more to offer besides absolutely, brilliant nights out and is far more exhilarating holiday destination when you combine tours of the awesome club scene with the stunning beaches, the unique (and well preserved) history and culture and, a dash of adventure. After all, you always need a bit of down time from those nights out.

The Club Scene

If you want to catch the best DJs, like David Guetta and Fatboy Slim, you have to plan ahead and check who is playing when and where. The clubbing season officially starts at the end of May (ending in late October) and each club has their own opening and closing ceremony, where the big acts tend to play. The main clubs are Pacha, Eden, Amnesia, Privilege, Destino, DC10 and Sankeys. Generally speaking, the clubs are a tad pricier, so the bars are a good place to start.


Some downtime is always needed on a holiday, and Ibiza’s beaches are the perfect places to kick back and relax. Try to check out as many as you can because each one offers something different. Soak up the sun on Sa Caleta or just revel in the peace and quiet of Cala Xuclar. Of course, if you don’t feel like relaxing you could always head to one of the main beaches and take part in one of many watersports on offer.

The lost city of Atlantis is another fantastic place to visit with a labyrinth of caves, rocks and sea pools. It’s a long and difficult road to get here, but absolutely worth it. Make sure to have a good hiking shoes.


Dalt Vila

Dalt Vila, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the spectacular old town of Ibiza. Visit here for the most amazing views, the detailed history and lavish culture. There are also some great museums, restaurants, shops and art galleries to explore as well. This place is lovely in the evening when it’s lit up.

The Old Town is equally amazing during the day when you can explore the narrow and steep cobbled streets and enjoy the wonderful panoramas. Dalt Vila is the only fortification in Europe which is preserved as a whole.

Casas de Dalt Vila

Ses Balandres

This secret hideaway is not for the fainthearted but I tell you something: it’s sure worth it. Here, you can get away from the bustle and hustle of the main resorts and truly relax on a fine bay that you will more than likely have to yourself. Well, that’s after you traverse a rather treacherous ladder and scale down the cliff using a bit of old rope. If you love an adventure as much as I do, then you will be very happy and that’s just with the photographic views from the top.


Formentera is very different from the other Balearic islands. In fact, it looks like one of the Greek islands with white sand and clear waters. This is an ideal island for relaxation, swimming and diving. If you want to avoid crowds and if you prefer individuality, come here.


Top Tips

  • Plan ahead, especially if you want to see a specific DJ

  • Buy club tickets online and escape the long queues

  • Visit Es Caná’s weekly Hippy Market

  • Look for the menu del dia at restaurants and eat three courses for a cheap price

  • Use a Disco Bus – the brilliant low cost service to get you to the clubs

  • Drink plenty of water

  • For the best sunsets, go to Cala Conta beach or Café Del Mar at San Antonio Bay

  • Take the walk to The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Snows at Dalt Vila

  • Visit Puig des Molins Necropolis to learn more about the island’s history

Photos: Formentera, Old Town, Ibiza seaside

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5 Great Destinations In Spain For Travelers and Expats

Spain is truly one of the most fascinating countries in the world because of the diverse cultures that exist there. When visiting Spain, it is imperative that you go to…

Spain is truly one of the most fascinating countries in the world because of the diverse cultures that exist there. When visiting Spain, it is imperative that you go to the different diverse regions that the country has to offer. Here is a list of five great destinations in Spain for travelers and expats;


Granada is truly one of the most incredible cities in Spain. Granada has an impressive cultural mixture of the Spanish and Moorish culture that have influenced the city for centuries. As far as tourism, the Alhambra is one of the most sensational preserved Moorish palaces that the traveler can explore for both a day and night tour.

Additionally, Granada is the city that created the delicious Spanish Gazpacho soup, which is ideal with a glass of Cava in the summer time. Spain’s white wine Sangria and Cava also originate from cities in Andalusia, which makes this region excellent for both dining and wine tasting. Granada is a great place for an expatriate to invest in who is looking for that wonderful old world Spanish style type of life.


Santiago de Compostella

Santiago de Compostella is one of Spain’s gems. In fact, it is the ending site of the long Camino de Santiago that begins in Arles, France. Within the city, there is an impressive cathedral that the Saint Santiago is said to be buried in. What makes Santiago de Compostella so special is that is located within a part of Spain called Galicia.

In Galicia, the locals speak Gallego, which is a language that has Celtic roots and when you listen to the traditional music, you will see the locals playing bagpipes and using shells for castanets. The shells are used as castanets due to the respects from the Saint Santiago whose symbol is said to be the shell. Pertaining to cuisine, Galicia has some of the most incredible beaches in Spain and is home to one of Spain’s best tapas called Pulpo.

In Santiago de Compostella, travelers can enjoy some of the most exquisite Pulpo while sipping on the region’s local beer called Estrella de Galicia. Santiago de Compostella truly represents how diverse Spain is because it has preserved its own dialect along with speaking Spanish for centuries.

Fachada Este de la Catedral de Santiago

San Sebastian

A close neighbor to Galicia is San Sebastian, which is located in the Basque Country. San Sebastian is your ideal tranquil beach city that has exceptional food. If you want to relax for a month in the Spanish sunshine and eat well, San Sebastian is your locale of choice. What makes San Sebastian so special is that the locals still speak Euskai, which is a language that is thousands of years old that no scholar can tell where it originated.

The Basque culture is quite distinct to the Spanish culture, which is particularly reflected in their cuisine. For the ultimate night out in San Sebastian, it is recommended to go Pincho-hopping. Pinchos are the Basque version of Spanish tapas. San Sebastian has several standing Pincho bars where you can order incredible wine and go from place to place. This is particularly sensational when there is a Spanish football game happening. The fans are yelling while eating cuisine that is served in Michelin restaurants. San Sebastian has several Michelin restaurants and many of the chefs also prepare Pinchos at these tapa bars in the downtown of San Sebastian.

All in all, San Sebastian provides the traveler or expat with a culinary enclave that has excellent beaches and a view of a culture that has been preserved for thousands of years first hand.

San Sebastian, Spain


Cordoba makes this list because it is truly one of the most underrated cities in Spain. In fact, many travelers pass it while taking the AVE train to Seville. Historically speaking, Cordoba is exceptional because it is one of the only places in the world in which the Jews, Christians, and Muslims coexisted together peacefully for centuries.

This cultural interaction is seen in the architecture in Cordoba. The best example of this is seen in the Mesquita. Within the Mesquita, you can see a mosque, synagogue, and Catholic church combined in architecture. The Mesquita served the various religions over the ages and is a wonderful architectural sight to witness first hand. Another aspect of Cordoba that is incredible is the old Jewish quarter.

Here you can see some of Spain’s oldest synagogues. And after viewing the synagogues, you can stop by one of the Arab style tea houses where you can enjoy hookah, Arab tea or coffee, and their traditional pastries. In the evening, there is nothing like a local Flamenco show in Cordoba where you can sip on a complimentary Sangria as you listen to Spanish guitar and watch Flamenco dancing.

Cordoba, is one of the most culturally rich cities in Spain and is a wonderful place for travelers and expats to explore while they are visiting Spain.

Cordoba, Spain


Salamanca is a two-hour train ride from Madrid and is one of the best examples of small town Spanish life. Salamanca is also home to one of the oldest universities in Europe.

The university’s architecture is a joy to wander through and to see the libraries where some of the most intelligent scholars in Europe have studied over the ages. Salamanca has one of the best Plaza Mayor’s in Spain where one can sip on a coffee and observe the Spanish families taking their paseo (nightly stroll) in the evenings.

When sitting in Salamanca, one can truly relax while admiring fine Spanish architecture and consuming great food. Salamanca is also home to exquisite cathedrals and monasteries that the traveler or expat can explore. Salamanca is a charming smaller Spanish city to explore and to truly witness the Spanish slow paced old world way of life that is something precious that is still preserved in Spain today. Thus, if you are looking for a beautiful locale that still allows you to take a two-hour siesta during the day, Salamanca is your ideal choice!

#Salamanca, Spain

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Six Best Places to Eat in Madrid

Spain is one of the most popular holiday and tourist destinations in the Mediterranean, if not the entire globe. Many Spanish hotels and resorts can be very expensive, especially in…

Spain is one of the most popular holiday and tourist destinations in the Mediterranean, if not the entire globe. Many Spanish hotels and resorts can be very expensive, especially in Madrid. But as a traveling holidaymaker who simply has to visit Madrid for its fantastic sceneries, attractive history, amazing culture and various tourist attractions, you do not have to break the bank to have some quality food whenever you are visiting the Spanish capital. Here are six best places to eat in Madrid, where you can find both quality and affordable prices!

1) Donde Sanchez

This is one of the best affordable restaurants for Castilian and other Spanish delicacies when traveling to Madrid. Sample sweets from the village of Campo de Criptana; enjoy traditional craft beers from La Mancha; refresh your day with the best of Spanish wines; and buy all kinds of cheese, oils, pates and chorizos. Donde Sanchez also has a small area for gourmet products and a tasting bar that acts as an art gallery. You can even get tapas from as low as 1 euro!

Location: Mercado de Anton Martin, Calle de Santa Isabel 5, 28012 Madrid, Spain.

The first ingredient Project 365(2) Day 290

2) The Pan tumaca

Even if you are a few hundred miles away from Barcelona, the world’s Catalan capital and the second largest city in Spain, you can still have a taste of the fabulous Catalan food and culture right here in Madrid at affordable prices! Apart from being homely, delicious and nutritional, Pan tumaca’s food can cost you as little as 10 euros for a good 3-course lunch.

Location: Mayor, 31 near Sol metro.

Eggplant Cubed with Honey Drizzle

3) Bar Omaira

If you wanna have a taste of Venezuela without having to visit South America and get a hint of Latin American food and culture in Madrid, then Bar Omaira is the place to go! The Venezuela-born owner of the restaurant, also known as Omaira, has worked hard to bring Venezuelan food specialties like “empanadas”, “cariada” and “arepas“ from across the Atlantic especially for you. All this at the most affordable prices of between 5 and 10 euros per portion.

Location: Mercado de Anton Martin, Calle de Santa Isabel 5, 28012 Madrid, Spain.

Shredded Beef Arepa - Cruzao Arepa Bar AUD9

4) Fiaschetteria La Saletta

This restaurant is Italian, and one of the most popular in Madrid for that matter. In the past, they were a big restaurant located in the Madrid CBD but today are situated in a slightly smaller place in Mercado Anton Martin. However, what has not changed is their quality, amazing and affordable Italian delicacies, which is a combination of the most superb Italian flavors. The most popular dishes here include Rigatoni Amatriciana, Lomo with Mustard and Crema de Verduras, with a 3-course lunch meal going for as little as 10 euros.

Location: Mercado de Anton Martin, Calle de Santa Isabel 5, 28012 Madrid, Spain.

Michaelangelo Special Pizza - Michaelangelo, Aspendale Gardens

5) La Biotika

La Biotika is a famous vegetarian restaurant whose affordable meals can set your pocket back by as little as 10 euros only. The restaurant specializes in Macrobiotic veggie cuisines, particularly vegetarian burgers.

Location: Amor de Dios, 3, Madrid, Spain.

6) La Taqueria de Birra

Dubbed “Little Mexico” by the lovers of Mexican cuisine traveling in Spain and Madrid, this budget Mexican restaurant offers delicious Mexican meals for as little as 10 euros. They are hot, spicy and filled with Mexican pizazz. Enjoy a taste of Mexico right in the Spanish capital!

Location: Pza. Comendadoras, 2, Gran Via area, Madrid, Spain.

Mexican Food

Besides these six best places to eat in Madrid do you have any other recommendations? Feel free to comment below.

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