Two days in Santander

  • Palacete del Embarcadero mansion. Santander

This is one of the best cities for a short break on the northern coast of Spain. It is known by many as the 'bride of the sea', and is famous for its elegant buildings, the La Magdalena peninsular, its charming street cafés and its spectacular bay, regarded as among the most beautiful in the world.

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Two days in Santander


You could start with a walk through the Pereda gardens until you come to the lively Plaza Porticada square. Beside it you'll find Santander cathedral, the perfect spot for your first photo. Then you'll come to the Plaza del Ayuntamiento square, and if you're keen on cultural tourism you can pay a visit to the Municipal Museum of Fine Arts or the Menéndez Pelayo House-Museum. Afterwards why not pick up a few presents in the shopping area? And you're bound to find a great place to have lunch (squid, sea snails, or mussels) in Calle Vargas. A city overlooking the sea Do you fancy a boat trip? You can reserve one at the Embarcadero mansion. On your return, we suggest a stroll along the Muelle del Calderón dock. Here you'll find the popular sculpture of two children diving into the water, which is the ideal place for a great photo. If you continue on along the Avenida de Luis Carrero Blanco you'll come to the Maritime Museum, which marks the start of the beach area and is a good place to spend the rest of the afternoon. And for dinner the best idea is to 'go out for tapas' around the Plaza de Cañadío square.

Two days in Santander


The La Magdalena peninsula is one enormous park. The best thing is to explore it on foot and visit its Royal Palace, the three caravels donated to Santander by a mariner, and the entertaining mini-zoo with seals, penguins and sea lions. Don't miss the views. After a pleasant morning it's now time for to lunch. We suggest heading for the Plaza de Italia square to see the Gran Casino –built in 1916 and appearing to preside over the city– for a drink in that area. You're now in the most popular part of Santander's seafront: El Sardinero. So –weather permitting– after lunch you can spend the rest of the day on one of its beaches. If you still have time, we recommend making for the romantic Piquío gardens, and maybe even going on to the Cabo Mayor lighthouse. And to top it all off you could watch the sunset from the viewing point in Plaza de Italia square, followed by dinner in any of the upmarket restaurants in the area.

Two days in Santander


The boat trips from the Embarcadero Mansion run from about July to October. You can go round the La Magdalena peninsula on a sightseeing train. There are guided tours of the La Magdalena Palace available. There are two excursions which shouldn't be missed if you have time to explore the area around Santander: the Cabárceno Nature Park (15 minutes away); and the Altamira Museum (30 minutes away).