Blogs from Santillana del Mar, Cantabria, Spain, Europe


Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar September 2nd 2019

We’re off again, this time revisiting our Honeymoon exactly 25 years ago. Then we toured Paradors in Southern Spain, now we’re heading along the north coast from Bilboa to Santiago de Compostella - not quite the ancient pilgrims’ route (which went slightly further south), but along the Atlantic coast instead. We flew from Southend (great) to Bilboa on Ryanair. What a joke outfit... we declined paying for allocated, seats, got random seats, 10 rows apart and I end up with loads of room down the back and a spare seat beside me. Oh well the flight was fine and on time.... We arrived in rain, hired a decent car and drove 1 hour in the rain to Limpias in time for late supper the rain. Paradors are a state owned and run chain of hotels ... read more
Cathy enjoys a foie gras starter
Santillana- a picturesque village in the countryside
Santillana- medieval church

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar May 15th 2017

So we start with a 7am pick up for Kris, VERY disturbing to let her go. She has been so great to have along, so supportive and so willing to at least try all the new stuff being thrown at her. She is an educator, fills in every blanks, every day, as to what gonna happen. Not here, every day presents a challenge How the F___ do you get from A to B. Pack up your shit EVERY day have it ready by 8:30 sharp when the delivery service picks up you luggage. What are you going to wear? What is the weather? Where is the bus, train or taxi location? How do I get there? Whats it going to be like when I get there? My GF walked 135K to arrive here in Santillana Del ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar May 15th 2017

Our B & B was terrific. Javier was so kind to drive al the way into Santandler and pick Kris up and bring her the B &B . Then he had his father take Kris to our hotel in Santtillana Del Mar. Me on the other hand, I have a 7 Hr. 30 min walk. The day is stunning, rain last night but cool sunny skies greet me. Our host drops me off at The Camino and I begin the trek. The scenery, weather, trail could not be better. Old country roads, no traffic, its perfect. Great day to be walking. Its always of interest to me the small things going on, spring begins, gardens, flowers, new birth abounds. You can only truly experience this by walking. What are they planting? What is already ripened, what ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar July 10th 2015

It has been 20 days since we set out for our trek on the Camino Norte. Today we arrived in Vilabas early enough to locate access to a computer terminal...the first we have found since our last post 15 days ago. The Camino continues to be an exciting challenge as we move across the northern coast of Spain walking through countryside that has taken us through lots of small towns, villages and country neighborhoods. For the first 2 1/2 weeks our route followed the coastline on most days, with a few small mountain ranges thrown in just to help improve our endurance. Thankfully the blisters have healed and our colds have resolved, and we continue to feel less fatigued at the end of the day. Often we had the sea on our right and beautiful mountain ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar June 25th 2015

Today is day 5 of QT15...we flew from Prague to A Coruna, Spain on 6-18, followed by an 11 hour train ride to Bilbao on 6-19. We set off for our Camino trek on Saturday, 6/20 to walk from Portogalete (on the outskirts of Bilbao) to Pobena. The 22 km walk this first day was tiring, but fun at the same time as we have been preparing for this adventure for some time, and it was good to finally be underway. Unfortunately our best laid plans were set aside early on as we arrived in Pobena only to find that there were no hotels available and the pilgrim albergue was full. Since we have our pilgrim credentials, we were offered a space in the yard where we pitched a lean-to shelter with our treking poles using ... read more

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar July 24th 2013

Without a car, it takes dedication to get to Santillana del Mar and then up to the Altamira Caves. Even Rick Steves, my travel guru, doesn't recommend it. But, I made it happen. It involved taking a crack of dawn bus from Bilbao to Santander, the regional hub of Cantabria. Then another bus a bit inland to Santillana del Mar, until finally hiking up into the hills for maybe 40 minutes. And I'm honestly proud of myself. I was at the caves by 12. Pretty good, if you ask me. And why come all this way, against most travel writers better judgments? The answer is that Altamira contains cave paintings from 14,000 years ago, by the earliest of humans. They were discovered in the 1870s, and actually the masses of people got to be too much ... read more
Hiking up to Altamira
Looking Back Towards Santillana
At the Museum

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar May 7th 2011

The thunderstorms last night were not an issue when trying to get to sleep but with one long shared pillow some diplomacy was called for. Fortunately a cheap pillow had been purchased in Clermont-Ferrand to cater for difficult situations. One positive to come out of the thunderstorm was a reasonably clean car in the morning. Light rain was falling and it was probably our coolest day on this part of our travels so warmer clothes were needed. After a bedroom breakfast (we say these things in hushed tones) we said farewell to the owner, who only spoke Spanish and perhaps some French, and left for some sightseeing in the old part of town. Having taken the scenic route last night we knew exactly where to go and how to exit the city. The underground car park ... read more
Topiary in riverside gardens, Burgos
Altarpiece insde Burgos Cathedral

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar November 28th 2010

In the Western part of Cantabria is the small medieval city of Santillana del Mar. They say the city is of three lies, since it is not holy (santi), flat (llana) or on the sea! (del mar). Some good-looking liar! The city is quite a beautiful little jewel, perfectly preserved with its bright cobbled streets and tan stone and brick buildings surrounding centuries of history that lies within this city. Cut off my automotive traffic, the city can only be explored by foot. So thats what we did. On a grey-skyed saturday three girls of all different nationalities piled into a very small car by any North American's standard and set off from Santander in Northern Cantabria Spain and drove through the Cantabrian countryside. Eventually finding there final destination of Santillana del Mar. This medieval jewel ... read more
Ester walking the cobble streets of Santilana del Mar
church of santilana del Mar
the bar we stopped to have a drink and tapas in

Europe » Spain » Cantabria » Santillana del Mar August 28th 2009

Geo: 43.389, -4.10918Yesterday night was supposed to be the last night in Santander, but the plans have now changed - I'm liking it so much here that I'm staying an extra night. This means that Bilbao will be cut from the itinerary but really, having already been there twice, there's not much left to see. Bilbao's a funny town - I've explained to friends that as a tourist, other than the Guggenheim there isn't a big draw. But I still loved it there last year because I have fond memories of eating Basque tapas on the terrace, drinking coffee, and girl watching. Memories, of Eva, one of the most beautiful Spanish women I have ever seen, with jet black hair and green eyes; Anes, the half-Belgian/half-Spanish cutie lawyer I met on the airport bus; the three ... read more

Tot: 0.143s; Tpl: 0.006s; cc: 8; qc: 82; dbt: 0.0909s; 1; m:domysql w:travelblog (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.2mb