Spain Paradores … Regardless of the nature of your trip, whether it’s sulking in culture, experiencing an adventure, exploring the wonderful national parks Spain has to offer, its gastronomy or most of all relaxation, you will be able to discover the Spain through its Paradores hotels.
The Paradores are a series of unique accommodations, 93 to be exact, scattered throughout Spain run by the government. For the most part the Spain Paradores are castles, monasteries, palaces, convents and other interesting buildings that have been converted into hotels. These are real monuments equipped with all the comforts of today, but manage to keep their traditional aspect. Whenever possible, I strongly suggest that you find a way to stay a couple of them because you are sure to have an experience you will never forget …
During a trip to Spain I stayed in various Paradores, one of the ones I remember most fondly is El Parador de Los Reyes Catolicos in Santiago de Compostela, a 15th century royal hospital. I was lucky enough to stay in a suite overlooking Plaza del Obradorio and the breathtaking cathedral located a stone’s throw from the Parador. The location of this Parador has special significance for many as it is the last stop on the pilgrimage of El Camino de Santiago or known in English as the Camino de Santiago, one of the most important Christian pilgrimages since the Middle Ages and existing for over 1000 years .
If you are looking for culture and history, you could start your journey by heading to Segovia to visit its amazing Roman aqueduct and stay at the Parador de Segovia, where the rooms are spacious and the view is magnificent. Continue to Avila and stay at the Parador de Avila, a 16th century palace where you will feel like royalty in this city surrounded by an imposing defensive wall. Move on to Salamanca, visit its spectacular cathedral and stay at the Parador de Salamanca or go to Cuenca, another magical city where you can explore the hanging houses and stay in the Parador de Cuenca, a 16th century convent. You should also consider the Parador of Caceres where you will stay in one of the more than ten slender towers that preside over the city or travel back to the splendor of ancient Rome by visiting the city of Mrida and stay in the Parador de Merida, an 18th century Convent with an ancient chapel and beautiful gardens. These are just some of my suggestions, remember that the possibilities are endless and I guarantee you that the experience will be unforgettable.
If you are looking for an adrenaline rush, the Paradores can be a perfect base for any of your thrilling adventures. El Parador de Cazorla is close to the Cazorla National Park and its active tourism programs. If you want to kayak or rafting, you should consider the Paradores de Cangas de Onis, Tui or Ronda. If you like birdwatching, Parque Nacional de Monfrage is for you and you can stay in the nearby Parador de Trujillo. Let your imagination run wild, why not take a hot air balloon at the Parador de Vic-Sau or go scuba diving in El Hierro. Looking for even more adventure, why not go caving along the Fuente De Parador in the heart of the Picos de Europa. Let your imagination be your guide.
When you book a night in Spain Paradores your breakfast will generally be included usually a buffet with all kinds of dairy products, cereals, seasonal fruit and pastries. The Paradores have extraordinary restaurants where you can taste the delicacies of the area you are visiting. On one of my last trips to Spain on a trip through Extremadura we stopped to eat Migas Manchegas, a delicious traditional Spanish dish made from leftover bread, at the Parador in Trujillo and they were really great!
Some of the Spain Paradores, especially the more popular ones, such as the Parador de Granada located in the Alhambra in Granada, tend to be booked well in advance. If your heart is fixed on a specific Parador, book it in advance or you may find yourself having to make other arrangements. I can’t stress enough if you have the opportunity and the time you stay in Spain Paradores will be an experience like no other.