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Santander, Spain

Santander is the capital and also the largest city of the province of Cantabria in Spain.

Santander has some 180,000 inhabitants and is on the ocean. It features a small historic center and a handful of beaches. Its most famous tourist attraction is the

Magdalena Palace

which was used as a summer getaway of Spanish royalty.
  • Tourist Information (Oficina de Turismo municipal), Jardines de Pereda, s/n., 942203000, 942203001 (, fax: 942203005). From Sep 16 until Jun 14 Mon to Fri 8.30 am to 7 pm, from Sep 16 until Passion Week Sat and Sun 10 am to 7 pm, from Passion week until Sep 14 10 am to 7 pm every day, from Jun 15 until Sep 14 from 9 am to 9 pm every day.


The climate of Santander is oceanic (Köppen... Read more

Santander, Spain

Santander is the capital and also the largest city of the province of Cantabria in Spain.

Santander has some 180,000 inhabitants and is on the ocean. It features a small historic center and a handful of beaches. Its most famous tourist attraction is the

Magdalena Palace

which was used as a summer getaway of Spanish royalty.
  • Tourist Information (Oficina de Turismo municipal), Jardines de Pereda, s/n., 942203000, 942203001 (, fax: 942203005). From Sep 16 until Jun 14 Mon to Fri 8.30 am to 7 pm, from Sep 16 until Passion Week Sat and Sun 10 am to 7 pm, from Passion week until Sep 14 10 am to 7 pm every day, from Jun 15 until Sep 14 from 9 am to 9 pm every day.


The climate of Santander is oceanic (Köppen climate classification Cfb), the annual thermal oscillation of the average monthly temperatures reaching around 10 °C (50 °F).

Humidity is quite high throughout the year and sometimes reaches more than 90%. Average daily maximum temperatures vary from 24 °C (75 °F) in summer down to 13 °C (55 °F) in winter. Summer temperatures are much cooler than in the more southern large cities of Spain but are typical of the Atlantic coastline. In general, however, summers are warmer than further west on the northern coastline. The damp, mild winters are more typical of the Mediterranean climate but the frequent precipitation in summer prevents Santander and the northern coast is classified as the cool-summer Mediterranean, despite having similar temperatures to many such areas. As regards to daytime temperatures, summers in Santander are similar to areas of France, England, and Germany, however, England and Germany tend to be drier during the summer.

The maximum temperature reached in Santander Airport was 37.8 °C (100 °F) on 27 June 2009, and the minimum temperature −5.4 °C (22 °F) on 21 January 1957. The warmest maximum daytime average for a month was in August 2003, with 27.1 °C (80.8 °F). Subtropical months (mean above 22 °C (72 °F)) are however rare. Another weather station recorded 40.2 °C (104 °F) on 17 August 1943.

Sunshine hours are very low in comparison with the rest of the mainland and southern Spain. With just around 1650 hours of sunshine, Santander is about as sunny as London and Paris, and quite a bit less sunny than most of England's south coastal regions.

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Santander, Spain: Port Information

Cruise ships dock in the town center so tourists can easily reach the attractions on foot. 

Get around Santander, Spain

  • Foot. Santander is reasonably small. The distance from one end of town to the other are some 6km (4 miles) and can be walked in 2 hours along the coast road. Within the city center, everything is within walking distance (15min walking).
  • Bus. Public buses are available at reasonable prices. It costs more for journeys out of the city proper, or you can save 40% by buying a 10-journey gray-colored 'Bonobus' card at a 'Tabaco' shop. Each time you get into bus you shall put the card onto the reader which books the travel price. Specifically, buses can take you to the main beaches some 2-4km (2m) from the city center. In each bus-stop, there is a timetable and route of all city buses. Ayuntamiento is the city-center (close to the regional bus stop Plaza Estaciones and railway-station). From there to the Plaza de Italia, near to the

    beach Sardinero

    there are 10 bus stops, so don't take this route on foot. Buses run quite frequently and easy transportation.
  • Hop On Hop Off Bus, tel 800-750-2859 departs from the Cathedral daily at 10.45 and 11.25 am, 12.00 noon, 1.15, 1.55, 4.45, 5.20, 6.00 and 6.35 pm, with stops at Pasea Pereda, Museo Maritimo, Palacio de Festivales y Planetario, Palacio de la Magdalena,

    Casiono/Playa de Sardinero

    , Faro de Cabo Mayor, Matalenas/Campo de Golf. Estadio, Universidad, Avenida Valdecilla, Cuatro Caminos and Barrio Pesquero, the entire journey taking about 75 min. No refunds! Children under 5: free of charge. Explanations are given in Spanish, English, French, German, Italian, Dutch and Japanese plus a commentary for kids.
  • Taxis are widely available throughout the city.
  • Bicycle. The city offers bicycle rental, for a very low price, at a number of locations around Santander (Jardines de Pereda, El Sardinero, La Magdalena). Bikes are loaned for the day, so get in early to avoid missing out.

What to see in Santander, Spain

  • Palacio de la Magdalena, La Magdalena, s/n, 942203084 (, fax: 942282689). Summer residence of the Spanish King from 1913 until 1930.  
  • Prehistoric and Archaeological Museum of Cantabria (Museo de Prehistoria y Arqueología de Cantabria), Hernán Cortés 4, 942207105. from Sep 16 until Jun 15 Wed to Sun 10 am to 2 pm and 5 to 8 pm, from Jun 16 until Sep 15 Tue to Sat 10:30 am to 2 pm and 5 to 8:30 pm. More than 1000 objects from Paleolithic to Iron Ages, items from Roman settlements Juliobrigo and Flaviobrige, medieval ivory belt buckle. 
  • Maritime Museum of Cantabria (Museo Marítimo del Cantábrico), San Martín de Bajamar s/n., 942274962 (, fax: 942281068). Oct 1 until Apr 30 Tue to Sun 10 am until 6 pm, May 2 until Sept 30 Tue to Sun 10 am until 7.30pm, closed Mon, Jan 1, Good Friday, May 1 and Dec 25. 
  • Bullfighting Museum (Museo Taurino), Calle de Jerónimo Sainz de la Maza, 942341204. Jun 15 to Sep 15: Tue to Fri 6 to 9 pm, Sat 11 am to 2 pm. In the lower floor of the bullring, in the western part of the city, near the Plaza de México, with bullfighting memorabilia, posters, photos and paintings, and colorful suits of bullfighters from all over Spain admission free.  
  • Municipal Museum of Arts (Museo Municipal de Bellas Artes), C/Rubio, 6, 942203120, 942203121 (, fax: 942203125), from 16 Sep until 14 Jun: Mon to Fri 10 am to 1 pm, 5.30 to 9 pm, Sat: 10 am to 1 pm, closed Sat afternoon, Sun, from 15 Jun until 15 Sep: Mon to Fri 11.15 am to 1 pm, 5.30 to 9 pm, Sat: 10 am to 1 pm, closed Sat afternoon, Sun,. Principal art museum of the region with a remarkable collection of paintings and sculpture from the 15th to 20th centuries, from Italian, Flemish and Spanish schools and a painting of King Fernando VII by Goya admission: free.  
  • Biblioteca Menéndez Pelayo, C/ Rubio 6, 942234534. Mon to Fri 9 to 11.30 am. guided visits every 30 min.  
  • Museo del Faro de Cabo Mayor (exhibition of the painter Eduardo Sanz), 942391994. Jul and Aug Tue to Sun 11 am to 1.30 pm, 5 to 9 pm, the rest of the year: 11 am to 1.30 pm, 5 to 8 pm. There are an art gallery and a strange collection of lighthouse images from popular culture--on everything from matchboxes to liquor bottles. Admission free.  
  • Colección del Ateneo de Santander, C/ Gómez Oreña, 5-1º, 9421212820 (fax: 942360520). Salón Social and Cafetería: 9 am to 1 pm, 4 to 9.30 pm. admission free.  
  • Colección del Parlamento de Cantabria, C/ Alta 31/33, 942241960.
  • Colecciones y Patrimonio de Caja Cantabria, C/ Rubio 6, 942234 534. Mon to Sat 9 am to 1.30 pm, Tue and Thu 4.30 to 9 pm except Jul, Aug, closed Sat afternoon and Sun.  
Old Town
  • Cathedral - Catedral de Santa Maria de la Asunción, Plaza del Obispo José Eguino y Trecu s/n, ☎ 942226024. Mon to Fri 10 am to 1 pm and 4 to 7.30 pm, Holy service at 11 am and 6.30 pm, Sat 10 am to 1 pm and 4 to 8 pm, Holy service at 11 am, 5 and 8 pm, Sun 10 am to 1 pm and 5 to 9 pm, Holy service at 12 am, 1.30, 5 and 8 pm. The cathedral cannot be visited during services, guided tours free of charge in July and August.  
  • Iglesia del Santísimo Cristo, C/ Somorrostro s/n. Jun 1 until Sep 30: 8 am to 1 pm and 4 to 8 pm every day, Oct 1 until May 31: 8 am to 1.30 pm and 5 to 8 pm every day, Holy services from Mon to Fri at 11 am and 8.30 pm, Sat 10 am to 1 pm and 4 to 8 pm, Holy service at 8.15, 10 and 11.15 am, 5 and 8 pm, Sat at 10 and 11.15 am, 1.15, 6 and 8.30 pm, Sun at 8.15, 10, 11 and 12 am, 1, 5 and 8.30 pm. The church cannot be visited during services, guided tours free of charge in July and August. 
  • Iglesia de la Anunciación, C/ Juan de Herrera 17. Open during services only. A good example of Renaissance architecture.  
  • Iglesia de la Consolación, C/Alta 19. Open during services only. Church in classical Baroque style.  
  • Iglesia de Santa Lucía, C/ Daoiz y Velarde 11. Open during services only. The building of the eclectic style dating from the 19th century.  
  • Iglesia del Sagrado Corazón, C/ San Jose. Open during services only. One of the best examples of the Neogothic style in town.
Public buildings
  • Santander Ban (Edificio del Banco Santander), Paseo Pereda 9-12 (opposite Pereda Gardens, not open to the public, in the city center, best reached with bus no. 1,3,4.C1,4.C2,9 and 10), 942206100.  
  • Banco Español de Crédito, Hernan Cortes 11. building in the eclectic style of 1900.
  • Banco de España, Avenida Alfonso XIII. opened 1922.
  • Town Hall (Ayuntamiento), Plaza del Ayuntamiento s/n. building in the eclectic style of the 19th century, richly decorated with columns, balconies, and coats of arms. 
  • Mercado del Este, C/General Mola. erected from 1840 onwards, completely reconstructed in 1986.
  • Mercado de la Esperanza, Plaza de la Esperanza. inaugurated 1904 in Modernism style.
  • Plaza Porticada. constructed as new city center after the fire of 1941.
  • Casa Pardo, Paseo de Perez Galdos. House from 1915, also called 'Palacio de los Botin' with spectacular views over the bay, one of the most splendid mansions of the city, at Sardinero, reached with bus no 10.
  • Casa Pombo, Plaza de Jose Antonio 3 (mansion of 1875, in the city center, reached with bus no 1).  
  • Dique de Gamazo. small fishing port, dating from 1908, 180 m long, 15 m wide, 8 m deep, in the city center, reached with bus no 1.  
  • Post Office Building (Edificio de Correos), Avenida de Alfonso XII, 942223023. An impressive building, one of the landmarks of Santander, builtin 1915, in the city center, reached with bus no 1 and 8.
  • Edificio de Los Arcos de Botin, Hernan Cortes 21. Neoclassic building on the north side of Piaza Pombo, near the harbor, a good example of the 19th cent. architecture, visitors are not allowed inside, in the city center, reached with bus no 1.
  • Edificio de Los Pinares, Duque de Santo Mauro (near Primera Playa, between Calle Duque de Santo Mauro and Calle Joaquín Costa). Impressive private home of ship owner Francisco García, with an outstanding view on the beach as well as Renaissance and Baroque elements of architecture.  
  • Edificio de Viviendas, Calle Castelar, 15 (in the city center, reached with bus no 1). One of the city's grandest mansions of the early 1900'S in the historic district along the Calle Castelar and Paseo de Pereda.  
Streets and Squares
  • Paseo de Pereda y Calle Castelar, (in the city center, reached with bus no 1). 1550 m long street with nice views of the harbor and the cathedral and many buildings from the 18th to 20th cent., including Puerto Chico, Dique de Gamazo, Cuesta del Gas, and Banco Vitalicio.
  • Plaza de José Antonio (Plaza Pombo), (Calle de Hernán Cortés and General Mola are on the north and south, and Pancho Cossío and Las Infantas on the east and west). charming plaza with colorful flowerbeds and musician bandstand.
  • Alameda de Oviedo, San Fernando, s/n. in the western part of the city center, running from Cuatro Caminos Roundabout in the west, to Plaza de Numancia in the east, specifically between Calle de San Fernando and Calle Vargas.
  • Jardines de Pereda, Paseo de Pereda, s/n. Santander's most famous park with a lot of trees, bushes and flowers, a pond, several sculptures, a music pavilion, a monument to the writer José María de Pereda (1833-1906), a fountain dedicated to the Cantabrian author, Concha Espina (1877-1953), the Fuente de los Meones and the city tourist office nearby.  
  • Parque de Altamira, Paseo del General Dávila, s/n (in the north of the city near the commercial center between Paseo del General Dávila and Calle Vía Cornelia). botanical garden in the city center, covering a total area of 16000m2. 
  • Jardines de Piquío, Avenida de Castañeda, s/n. occupying an area of 13000 m2, with fine views on the Ensenada del Sardinero, Cabo Menor to the north and Magdalena Peninsula to the south. On a promontory between Primera and Segunda Playa (First and Second Beaches, originally known as the "Piquillo" or the "Punta del Rostro" (Face Point).  
  • Parque del Doctor González Mesones, Avenida del Stadium, s/n (in the east of the city near El Sardinero and the football stadium). park with an area of 40000m2, with fountains, ornate stone benches with heraldic shields and a statue of the poet José Luis Hidalgo.  
  • Parque de La Marga, Jerónimo Sainz de la Maza, s/n. west of the city, near Puerto Pesquero (Fishing Port), Dársena de Maliaño (Maliaño Docks), fish market and restaurants in the Barrio Pesquero (Fishing Quarter).  
  • Parque de La Magdalena, Avenida de La Magdalena, s/n, 942272504. 8 am to 10 pm daily. With 25000 m2 the biggest park in the city, surrounding the Palacio Real (Royal Palace). It was deserted until the end of the 19th century and houses a hermitage dedicated to Saint Magdalena and a defensive castle overlooking the bay. It has a zoo on the rocky cliffs on the northern end, with lions, seals, penguins and polar bears and a galleon nearby that belonged to the sailor and adventurer Vital Alsar.  
  • Parque de Cabo Mayor, Avenida del Faro, s/n, (situated near El Sardinero beaches.). Covering an area of more than 100,000m2, the park is extremely spectacular on windy days when the waves crash onto the cliffs. The Faro de Cabo Mayor is the oldest lighthouse in Cantabria. It was built in 1839, is 30m high and its light can be seen from 29 miles away. The rock formation of the Puente del Diablo (Devil's Bridge) and the Panteón del Inglés (Englishman's Pantheon) is nearby. 

What to do in Santander, Spain

  • Picnic on Magdalena Peninsula
  • Learn how to sail
  • 5 city walks: go to the Santander Tourist Office in the city center (Old Market, near the Old Banco de Santander) and get a free city guide; the free city guide describes these 5 itineraries. These 5 itineraries are enough to keep you busy for 1-2 days.
  • boat round trip: There is a regular boat service through the Santander Bay, boats run from Santander to Pedreña, Somo and back. 
  • Enjoy the beaches. Walk up to the lighthouse at Cabo Mayor, visit the museum and enjoy the view from the top.
  • International Charter Group - Yacht charter and sailing, one of the worlds largest yacht charter companies, can take care of all charter requirements, from bareboat to crewed in the Santander. Operating from nine offices worldwide (USA, Spain, UK, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland, Caribbean, Hong Kong, and Dubai).
  • Other things to consider: Santander is a city in North Spain and the weather is similar to North Germany. At 4-6 September 2013 it has rained, so even if you go there in summer, please take an umbrella or raincoat. It can rain at any time. It is a windy place and there can be fog in the morning. Evenings tobacco shops might be closed so if you smoke, please try o buy cigarettes in the day or keep some coins, in some bars, there are cigarette automatons. A lot of old-generation, pensioners are around and people have a high-living standard so food in some restaurants and other daily needs might be expensive. Please be ready that there are unfortunately not so many people who can speak English, therefore it is advised to learn some basic words how to order something in the restaurant, etc.
Santander has a lot of fine beaches.
  • Magdalena Beach (Playa de la Magdalena).
  • Sardinero Beaches (Playa del Sardinero).
  • Camel Beach (Playa del Camello).
  • Mataleñas Beach (Playa de Mataleñas).
  • Magdalena Peninsula (see the penguins in the 'mini-Zoo') & Magdalena Palace (Palacio de Magdalena).
  • Lighthouse at Cabo Mayor (faro de Cabo Mayor), and the devil's bridge (puente del diablo), a bizarre rock formation.
  • Playa de Bikinis, safe and lovely beach on the Peninsula de la Magdalena, protected from big waves, very calm.
  • Playa de Covachos, Cotero (Santa Cruz de Bezana), one of the most attractive beaches.
  • Playa de El Bocal, Corbanera, peaceful and quiet,
  • Playa de El Camello, Avenida de la Reina Victoria, near Magdalena Peninsula,
  • Playa de El Puntal, Somo (Ribamontán al Mar),
  • Playa de La Concha, in the middle of Sardinero,
  • Playa de La Magdalena, Ensenada del Sardinero, with fine views of the bay,
  • Playa de La Maruca, Monte,
  • Playa de la Virgen del Mar, San Román, peaceful and quiet,
  • Playa de Langre, Langre (Ribamontán al Mar), spectacular situation between the cliffs,
  • Playa de Los Molinucos, small beach north of Segunda Playa,
  • Playa de Los Peligros, Avenida de la Reina Victoria, quiet beach in a sheltered bay,
  • Playa de Mataleñas, between Cabo Mayor and Cabo Menor, the 'luxury' beach of Santander,
  • Playa de Somocuevas, Liencres (Piélagos), with fine golde sands,
  • Playa de Valdearenas, Liencres (Piélagos), fine sand dunes,
  • Playa Primera de El Sardinero, Plaza de Italia, the most famous beach of Santander,
  • Playa Segunda de El Sardinero, Playa de Castaneda.
  • Somo Beach is a little bit outside of Santander. It can be reached from downtown Santander by boat. Boats leave every 10 minutes and the boat ride takes about 10 minutes. Somo Beach is about 3 km long and is less crowded than beaches in Santander.

What to eat and drink in Santander, Spain


  • The best area to eat fish is the district close to the fishing harbor (Barrio Pesquero), although locals usually regard this as a tourist trap.
  • Santander is known amongst Spaniards for its many Regma ice-creamery outlets. At times it can seem that they have an outlet on every corner. Their very generous serving sizes of 8 popular flavors of ice cream have been melting down the hands of locals for years, even throughout the winter months. Other chains such as Capri on Paseo de Pereda provide a greater range of choices.
  • Bodega Javi Quintanilla, Guardar Calle Bonifaz, 9, offers various email. Very nice atmosphere. Bus stop PUERTO CHICO.
  • Bodegas Mazón, Calle Hernán Cortés, 57, offers various meals. Very nice atmosphere. Crowded, best before 8 pm to go. Strong recommendation. Bus stop PUERTO CHICO.
  • La Bogeda (across Hotel Santemar, Calle Joaquin Costa, close to Plaza De Italia), small local place. Pintxos and tapas. Tv and football matches can be watched.
  • Señores Patatas on Calle Santa Lucía offers student-priced meals of fries and hamburgers. Try the 'Five Sauces' (Cinco Salsas) plates with five types of fry cut and five types of sauce.
  • Taj Mahal on Calle Santa Lucía is the only Indian restaurant in town and serves a tasty alternative to the Spanish staples.
  • Sakura near Cuatro Caminos serves Japanese dishes.
  • Fausto, Fernández de Isla 15, 942236690.
  • La Casona del Judío, Resconorio 35, 942323013.
  • La Bombi, Casimiro Sainz 15, 942213028.
  • La Mulata, Tetuan sn, 942363785.
  • Cañadio, Gómez Oreña, 15, 942314149.
  • La Posada del Mar, Castelar 19, 942213023.
  • Sixtina, Del Sol 47, 942219595.
  • Zacarias, Hernán Cortés 38, 942212333, one of the best restaurants in Santander, owned by the best-known chef de cuisine in Santander, Cantabrian and seafood dishes.
  • Lasal, Castelar 5, 942214646 (
  • El Serbal, Andrés del Rio, 7, 942222515. 1.30 until 4 p.m., 8.30 until 11.30 p.m., closed Sun evening and Mon.
  • Bar del Puerto, Hernán Cortés 63, 942213001 (, fax: 942219393).
  • La Sardina de Plata, Plaza Doctor Fleming, 3. Restaurant in nautic design, serving regional cuisine, cheese mousse, beef fillet with truffles and cognac, fish salad.
  • Bodega Cigalena, Daoíz y Velarde, 19 (Zona: Puerto Chico), 942213062. 1 to 3 pm, 8 pm to midnight. Castilian bodega, popular with younger people, serving fish soup (sopa de pescado) and shellfish paella, great selection of wines from Castilia. 
  • Altamira, Avenida Reina Victoria, 27, 942314960. Serves traditional cuisine.  
  • Copa Cabana, Reina Victoria, 46, 942282157 spectacular views.
  • El Cormorán, Segunda Playa del Sardinero, 942273005. dining by the sea.
  • Figón, Cisneros, 7, 942235366, home-style cuisine.
  • Gelín, Nueva Montaña, s/n, 942332733. Traditional and rustic.
  • Horno de Burgos, La Unión, 4, 942280319. Traditional Castilian cuisine.
  • Peña Prieta, Vargas, 35, 942230170. Fresh fish.
  • Capitol, Francisco de Quevedo, 7, 942229191, seafood tapas.
  • El Estanque de Gama, Gama (Next to the N634), 942104202. One of the most beautiful restaurants in Cantabria. 20 min. from Santander towards Bilbao. It is also an elegant cocktail bar in the middle of the Santoña`s Nature Reserve Marshes. 


In the summer, everybody starts their night at Plaza de Cañadío, in the center of the old town. It is a hive for young Santanderinos and exchange students. It is surrounded on three sides by various bars and restaurants. During the school year, Rio de la Pila becomes the new Cañadio. It is cheapest if you buy your alcohol of choice from the grocery store beforehand. These locations are where most drinking of calimocho - the red wine/coca-cola combo favored by young Spaniards - takes place.
Later in the night (from about 2 AM) the drinking action moves to bars and clubs in the area, including La Embajada, Retros, Cafe del Sol, La Rana Verde, Opium and many others. Three major dance clubs are located nearby - Malaspina, El Divino, and Rocaverde.

Shopping in Santander, Spain

  • Lupa (big supermarket chain), Avenida de Parayas, s/n, 900200328.  
  • Mercado de la Esperanza, El Mercado, s/ (Behind the Mercado de la Esperanza in Plaza de la Esperanza is an open-air market selling clothes, fruits and flowers. Mon to Fri 8 am to 2 pm and 5 to 7:30 pm, Sat 8 am - 2 pm), 942220529. The busy market built in 1897 and restored in 1977, the oldest surviving market in Santander after the Mercado del Este, built in 1839, was recently demolished.
  • Santa María Pescados, San Francisco, 12 (fish market located in the San Francisco complex). Mon to Fri 9 am to 1:30 pm and 4:30 to 8:30 pm, Sat 9 am - 1:30 pm. offering fresh seafood from the Cantabrian Sea, shellfish, hake, sea-bass, sardines, squid, octopus lobsters, percebes (goose barnacles) and crayfish.
  • Hilario, General Dávila, 942219854. Mon to Fri 9 am to 2 pm and 5 to 8 pm, Sat 9 am to 2 pm. meat shop located at the Hospital Santa Clotilde.

Safety in Santander, Spain

In Spain, pickpockets are not jailed if they steal less than €400. After they are arrested, they are automatically bailed to carry on pickpocketing so they can easily pay their €200 fine when they go to court. Many have been around the Spanish justice merry-go-round for hundreds of times. Spanish pickpockets are really skillful but they are in competition with many more from South America.

Dialing 112 on any telephone will reach the emergency center. It can be used to request Police, Firemen, Rescue, Ambulance or other emergency assistance. Calls to that number are free. The emergency operator will ask you for your data and the nature of the emergency and so will send the appropriate services to the place. It can be also used freely from public payphones.

Spain is a safe country, but you should take some basic precautions encouraged in the entire world:
  • Thieves may work in teams and a person may attempt to distract you in order that an accomplice can rob you more easily. Theft, including violent theft, occurs at all times of day and night and to people of all ages.
  • Thieves prefer stealth to direct confrontation so it is unlikely that you will be hurt in the process but exercise caution all the same.
  • There have been instances where thieves on motorbikes drive by women and grab their purses, so keep a tight hold on yours even if you don't see anyone around.
  • Try not to show the money you have in your wallet or purse.
  • Always watch your bag or purse in touristic places, buses, trains, and meetings. A voice message reminding that is played in most of the bus/train stations and airports.
  • Do not carry large amounts of money with you, unless needed. Use your credit card (Spain is the first country in the number of cash points and most shops/restaurants accept it). Of course, use it with caution.
  • Beware of pickpockets when visiting areas with large numbers of people.
  • Theft from rental vehicles is high. Be vigilant in service areas on the highways along the coast. Avoid leaving any luggage or valuables in the vehicle and use secure parking facilities.
  • Don't hesitate to report crimes to local police, though the processing time is usually long.
  • In general, you must bear in mind that those areas with a larger number of foreign visitors are much more likely to attract thieves than places which are not so popular among tourists.
  • Avoid gypsy women offering rosemary, refuse it always; they will read your future, ask for some money, and your pocket will probably be picked. Some gypsy women will also approach you on the street repeating "Buena suerte" ("good luck") as a distraction for another gypsy woman to try to pickpocket you. Avoid them at all costs.
  • Women who carry purses should always put the straps across their bodies. Always hold on to the purse itself and keep it in front of your body. Keep one hand on the bottom, as pickpockets can otherwise slit the bottom without you ever knowing.
  • Never place anything on the back of a chair or on the floor next to you, keep it on your person always.
  • If you must use an ATM, do not flash the money you have just picked up.
  • More foreign passports are stolen each year in Spain than anywhere else in the world. Ensure that your passport is protected at all times.
  • In the event of a road-related incident, be extremely cautious about accepting help from anyone other than a uniformed Spanish police officer or Civil Guard. Thieves have been known to fake or provoke a flat tire, and when a motorist stops to help, the thieves steal the motorist’s car or belongings. The reverse scenario has also occurred, whereby a fake Good Samaritan stops to help a motorist in distress, only to steal the motorist’s car or belongings.
  • Incidents of drink spiking, followed by theft and sexual assault, have been reported.
  • Be alert to the possible use of ‘date rape’ and other drugs including ‘GHB’ and liquid ecstasy. Buy your own drinks and keep sight of them at all times to make sure they are not spiked; female travelers should be particularly watchful. Alcohol and drugs can make you less vigilant, less in control and less aware of your environment. If you drink, know your limit - remember that drinks served in bars are often stronger. Avoid splitting up from your friends, and don't go off with people you don't know.

Language spoken in Santander, Spain

Spanish is the official language. English is widely spoken in tourist places.


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Cueva de La Pasiega, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.2 (10 votes)

Cueva de La Pasiega, or Cave of La Pasiega, situated in the Spanish municipality of Puente Viesgo, is one of the most important monuments of Paleolithic art in Cantabria. It is included in the UNESCO schedule of Human Heritage since July 2008, under the citation "Cave of Altamira and palaeolithic cave art of Northern Spain." It is located in the...
Palacio de la Magdalena, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.8 (10 votes)

The Palacio de la Magdalena (Spanish for Magdalena Palace) is an early 20th-century palace located on the Magdalena Peninsula of the city of Santander, Cantabria, Spain. History Construction of the palace was initiated in 1908 by the local government of Santander for the purpose of providing a seasonal residence for the royal family of Spain....
Alto Campoo, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.2 (11 votes)

Alto Campoo is a ski resort in the Cantabrian Mountains of northern Spain. The resort is located in the Cantabrian comarca of Campoo. The source of the river Ebro is near the resort in the town of Fontibre.   Resort With 28 kilometres (17 mi) of marked pistes, it is one of the biggest resorts of the Cantabrian Mountains. The...
Sardinero, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.7 (10 votes)

Sardinero is a popular beach located in the Spanish city of Santander, Cantabria. Sardinero is divided by the gardens of Piquio about one-quarter the way along its length, stretching from the Magdalena Peninsula to Mataleñas; two further adjacent beaches are also sometimes included. Together about 4,300 feet (1,300 meters) long and 260 feet (80...
Colegiata y Claustro de Santa Juliana, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.1 (10 votes)

The Colegiata y Claustro de Santa Juliana (Spanish: Colegiata y Claustro de Santa Juliana) is a collegiate church located in Santillana del Mar, Spain. It was declared Bien de Interés Cultural in 1889.
Gran Casino del Sardinero, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.5 (10 votes)

The Gran Casino del Sardinero is a leading gambling casino in the city of Santander in the autonomous community of Cantabria (Spain). It is in the Plaza de Italia in El Sardinero. History There had been a casino very popular with royalty in this location, but it was demolished after a fire in the 1890s and the present building erected. It opened...
Cave of Altamira and Paleolithic Cave Art of Northern Spain, Santander, Spain
Average: 9 (10 votes)

Cave of Altamira and Paleolithic Cave Art of Northern Spain is the name under which are grouped 18 caves located in different regions of northern Spain, which together represent the apogee of Paleolithic cave art in Europe between 35,000 and 11,000 B.C. They have been collectively designated a World Heritage Site.   Cave of Altamira...
Santander Cathedral, Santander, Spain
Average: 9.3 (10 votes)

Santander Cathedral (Spanish: Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción de Santander, or "Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary of Santander") is located in the Spanish city of Santander. Its structure is mainly Gothic, although it has been extended and renovated in later times.   History The cathedral is a...
Cabarceno Natural Park, Santander, Spain
Average: 8.9 (10 votes)

The Natural Park is located in Cabárceno, Pisueña Valley (region of Pas-Miera) 17 kilometres (11 mi) from Santander, located in a former iron mine in the town of Cabárceno Township Penagos (Cantabria, Spain). The park belongs to Cantur, a company whose purpose is the promotion of tourism and which is owned by the Government of Cantabria....