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Spain Travel Top 5

Top 5 places Ben would rather be right now

Fino bar, Malaga

As part of a series I’ll be running this summer with help from Spain’s best writers and bloggers, I’d like to start with the Top 5 places I’d rather be in Spain right now (considering it’s too hot to venture outside here in Madrid!)

1. Following a long-distance footpath in the Pyrenees
Years ago I tried to do the GR-11, which crosses the mountains from Catalonia to the Basque country, coast to coast. It nearly killed me and after just 3 days I went back to Madrid for the car. But I’ve never known such incredible vistas and solitary valleys, and I’d love to try it again…

2. Playa de Andrin, near Llanes, Asturias
I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again: foraging goats on steep, fern-covered cliffs, cool wet sand, crystalline waters, cider and a bocadillo in the bar on the hill for lunch… forget the costas, this is a real beach.

3. A Fino Bar in Malaga
Any Fino bar will do, really, just knowing that I am in one of the Andalucia’s most lively cities and that there is glass of cool fino in my hand would make my day. Later I’d take a walk around the old town and finish up with grilled sardines on the admittedly not-so-attractive beach.

4. Strolling along Gros beach
San Sebastian is the most attractive combination of surf, sand and city in Europe. Forget famous La Concha beach, always packed, and check out Gros, full of beautiful people and great waves, and just 5 minutes walk from the old town: Pintxo heaven, the classiest tapas in Spain.

5. Driving across the central plains on my Vespa
In any direction, me and the Meseta, not in any kind of a hurry, and no need to be back for a week.

Image: Fino in Malaga, by Ben.