Blogs from Santander, Cantabria, Spain, Europe


Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander January 21st 2024

After spending a lovely Christmas at home, I'm off again. As I set off at dawn the snow was fresh and crispy. It's lovely and not too hard to cycle on. A couple of seals were lazing around below the Peace Bridge and there were about a dozen cormorants taking turns to dive. There must be fish about today. Binevenagh was like a postcard photo with it's dusting of snow. The train connections to Rosslare worked perfectly and I arrived in plenty of time for the midnight ferry to Santander. I asked about a cabin and was fortunate to get a very reasonably priced one usually used by truck drivers. Turned out to be an excellent decision fir the two nights on board. The sailing was wonderfully smooth. I even managed to eat on board! I ... read more
Snow along The Foyle
Peace Bridge.
Seal at Peace Bridge

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander December 10th 2023

After the long overnight journey from Cadiz, it was lovely to soak up the Christmas atmosphere for a few hours in Bilbao. I was tempted to stay the night, but decided to press on and get to Santander to try and avoid any last minute mishaps. The boat to Ireland sails from Bilbao for the summer season and from Santander in the winter. For a while now, I've wanted to travel on the narrow gauge railway that links cities along the north coast of Spain. This was my opportunity to try it out. In the tourist office I asked for information about the train to Santander. The lady behind the desk tried to persuade me that it was better and much faster to use the bus. She didn't really seem to grasp that I wanted to ... read more
River Nerbioi. Bilbao.
Bilbao turron
La Concordia - Bilbao FEVE Station.

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander October 14th 2022

I decided to stay a second night at Camping Virgen del Mar. I spent an easy day exploring Santander and getting together the last few bits and bobs I need. First priority was to book the train out of here. I managed to struggle through in Spanish. Explained what I wanted, it wasn't pretty, but it worked. Maybe in four weeks time I'll be a bit more refined So me and the bike are now booked on the 0714 train to Quintanilla de Los Torres. Gonna be an early start. My alarm is set for 5.30am as I really don't want to miss it. That journey will take me pretty much through the Picos de Europe and avoid a lot of climbing. I'll save that for another time. From there I'll head towards Alar del Reys ... read more
Mural of gannets on a school wall.
The Jesuit College.

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander October 13th 2022

I'm off again. Spain this time. I just arrived in Santander today after a very comfortable overnight sailing from Plymouth. I have no set itinerary except that I'll be sailing back to Ireland from Bilbao in one month's time. Surely it doesn't take a month to cycle from Santander to Bilbao. Well, I'm not taking the direct route. The plan so far is to go to Bilbao via Lisbon, returning via Donaña and Seville. Now that will definitely take a month! To cycle it all I'll have to do a minimum of about 80km per day which is doable. I think I will make good use of trains and buses as I feel it necessary. I hope to keep this blog updated every few days, depending on WiFi availability and having something to say. We'll see ... read more
The pont Aven heading back to Plymouth.
Beach at Virgen del Mar.

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander June 7th 2022

TOUR 2 – Great Iberian Tour – TUE, 07 JUN 2022 – Day 8: Fantastic landscapes. Altamira National Museum. Panoramic city tour of Santander. We will travel to Picos de Europa. We will visit Basílica de COVADONGA, which is surrounded by beautiful scenery. Then, we will resume our journey following the coastline to SANTILLANA, one of Spain’s most beautiful towns, and we will visit its well-preserved medieval quarter. We will also visit the National Museum and Research Centre of ALTAMIRA (ticket included) located in the vicinity of this town. We will later travel to SANTANDER, the region’s capital, a coastal city with amazing views and beaches. We will explore and learn about this elegant city and beautiful bay on the included panoramic city tour. NOTE: On some high difficulty dates (especially in summer from May to ... read more
La Basílica de Covadonga. Cangas de Onís, Asturias, Spain
La Basílica de Covadonga. Cangas de Onís, Asturias, Spain
La Basílica de Covadonga. Cangas de Onís, Asturias, Spain

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander July 22nd 2019

Bonjour à tous, Aujourd'hui je n'avais pas les valises dans le coffre, mais sous les yeux. Vers 18h, une dizaine de coups de canon, du gros calibre, ça à vibré dans la chambre, à 20 heure pareil. Le temps est à l'orage, ça gronde, mais je n'ai pas vu de vigne, c'est donc pas pour la grêle, pour les ours??. Vers 22h lorsque je reviens de manger, sur la parking de l'hôtel, j'entends une sono très forte, ça coupe, ça recommence, et je me dis il va y avoir une fête bientôt, ils font des réglages. Le temps de finir le blog, de lire un peu, pas longtemps, je suis quand même fatigué de ma journée, j'éteins vers 11h15, et à 30 je suis presque dans mon premier sommeil, de nouveau ces coups de canon. Au ... read more
Palais Magdalena
praya Gulpiyuri

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander May 15th 2017

Santander is a large city on the water with a lot of cool stuff to see. It is by no means Bilbao, but it was nice to stay in a hotel with great amenities. The walk starts out of the City with clear marking's for the Camino. This 20K trek is to take 3 hrs 30 min, meaning the path is mostly on a road. True to form the Camino follows the city out to a roundabout where it abruptly starts up out of the town of Santander. The trek is very nice along the coast line with great vistas, the weather is perfect for walking 62-70 degrees with partly sunny skies. Kris is the meet me in Arce around lunch time which should around 1pm. The walk is typical of the area, with remote villages, ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander May 13th 2017

Well, pinch me! It rained last night but is clear blue sky for todays walk to Santander. This is 27K segment and should take 6 hours. The walk is what I imaged the Camino to be like, nice rolling hills, gentle up and downs thru small villages of 30-40 houses, small farms, lots of animals in the fields, new gardens, spring is in full swing! Fruit trees in blossom, wild flowers everywhere new babies abound! New born calves, horses, sheep, chickens, geese, goats, etc. The smell of new cut hay and cow shit is everywhere! This being said, I must state one of the most annoying things I have experienced on the Camino is aggressive and habitually barking dogs. EVERY farmer has a dog chained at his driveway to prevent anyone from leaving the road and ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander May 2nd 2017

30th April Travel to Santander day. A lazy start as there was no rush plus the wind was picking up...a lot. Then the rain came, horizontally. But, hahaha, the big Merc was copping most of it & they were packing up & it had a sliding door on the windward side. Karma. We left near midday & set the Dyson for Carrefour in Santander where after a wet & very windy drive, we bought some wine & had lunch. We got to the port in plenty of time where we wondered what the crossing would be like ...We left on time & after 5 minutes the ship was already rocking & rolling. Then we left the harbour... Well, what a hoot! After another 2 minutes a tannoy announcement came on to say that the doors to ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santander March 30th 2016

The sun still continues to shine on the BBA V3 although we wonder if by saying this we might jinx ourselves soon and the cold and damper conditions of those early days of our travels in France return again. We are still getting used to the sun rising so late in the morning for us. Today it is 8am as the sun makes it appearance over the highest hill to the east of us. The city are of Santander didn’t seem to have what we wanted in our sightseeing today so we plan to spend the time on the coast north of the built up part of the city instead. We retraced our path towards Soma as the shortest way around the Bay of Santander to get to where we wanted to be. On the way ... read more
Looking back to the city apartments of Santander
Snow on the Picos de Europa,west of Santander
Sandinero Beach,Santander

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