Need a warm winter getaway? Try sunny Spain!


Written by:


Every year, thousands of Europeans flock to Spain during the winter months. This is because Spain offers some of the best weather from December to March in the whole of Europe.


Whether you’re interested in spending the winter in Spain, you’ll want to know what to expect during the colder months. The great thing about Spain is its diversity. You can enjoy both beautiful snowy mountains and warm sunny beaches during the winter months. Let’s consider the winter weather throughout Spain and what to do around the country during the colder months.

Winter weather in Spain: What to expect

Spain in the winter can produce many different weather conditions throughout its 17 autonomous regions. In general, winters in Spain in the southern areas are warmer than in the northern regions, but some southern inland areas of Spain at higher altitudes also experience colder winter temperatures.


The average temperatures in Spain from December to February range from lows of 33 °F to highs of 63°F, depending on where you are in the country. Most of the country gets rain between November and April.


Typically, Spain December weather is the coldest of the year. The month gets on average only around 7 days of sunshine. The weather in Spain in January is more or less the same with 8 sunny days on average. Things start to slowly get warmer with the weather in Spain in February bringing an average of 161 hours of sunshine.


All the winter months get approximately the same amount of rain. December in Spain sees around 5 inches of rain, while you can expect about 4 inches during January in Spain. February in Spain gets around 3 inches of rain.

Gibraltar, Spain

Things to do in Spain in the winter

Exciting skiing, fun carnivals, and thousands of beautiful blooming almond trees across Spain make the country a must-visit winter destination. One of the great things about the winter holidays in Spain is that there are fewer tourists around the country and tourist sites are virtually empty. So, what can you see and do during the December Spain holidays? Let’s explore:

  • Walk the Camino

Hiking may not seem like the best activity to do in winter but there is a particular route, the Camino de Invierno, that is designed to be walked in the winter months. This is one of the routes of the Camino de Santiago. It starts in Ponferrada and ends in Santiago de Compostela.

  • Go skiing

One of the best things to do in Spain is to visit one of the exciting ski resorts that are situated throughout the Iberian Peninsula. In the center of Spain, there are also ski slopes, but they are typically more crowded due to their closeness to Madrid.

Play golf in Andalucia

Spain is known as an excellent destination for playing golf throughout the year. With plenty of beautiful courses, there is no better place to go for a day or weekend of golf than Andalucia, South of Spain. Prices for playing golf and accommodation close to the courses in Andalucia are generally much cheaper in the winter months.

Walk the streets of Madrid

Visiting Spain’s capital city during winter is a truly magical experience. The city has many amazing festive-themed activities, as well as Christmas markets and lights covering the streets. One of the most famous festivals held in Madrid during the winter is the Three Kings Day Parade, which celebrates the arrival of the three wise men in Bethlehem.

Explore the Nativity Scenes

A special Christmas tradition during the Spanish December holidays is the set up of nativity scenes all over the country. From churches to commercial centers, almost every institution or organization has one. Locally, they are known as Belenes and they typically feature clay figurines that illustrate the birth of Jesus.

Visit Mallorca

Every winter during the Spanish January holidays, the incredible island of Mallorca gets covered in an extraordinary blanket of pink and white flowers. The locals call it the “snow of Mallorca” and this is the perfect description of how the island gets transformed into a visual spectacle as millions of almond trees explode into bloom. But be sure to take a few jackets, because Mallorca weather in January can be chilly. The same goes for Mallorca weather in February.

Best places in Spain to visit during the winter months

If you think about Spain, you typically think of having ice-cold glasses of sangria and large plates of paella near golden beaches. But where can you go when the weather is colder and the sun isn’t shining every day?

Visit Mediterranean Spain

The most popular region in Spain in the cold season is the Mediterranean. In Mediterranean Spain, winters are milder and much warmer than inland regions.


One of the best places in Spain to visit in the winter here is Seville. The luminous light display in Seville during December gives a magical look to the whole city. Some must-visit places in Seville are the Cathedral, Plaza de España, the Museum of Arts and Traditions and La Giralda. Seville weather in February also makes it a great time to bask on the beautiful beaches close to the city.



Malaga is a charming city and gets visits from thousands of tourists every year. If you want to avoid crowds, winter is the perfect time to go to Malaga. Malaga weather in February and Malaga weather in January is mild, so you can enjoy a beer or cocktail by the beach in a local chiringuito, or go to a restaurant for tapas and fresh seafood.


Visit North and Northwest Spain in the winter

Winters in the North are strongly influenced by depressions traveling across the Atlantic bringing a similar climate to the UK.




Fancy a delicious hot chocolate with churros? This is exactly what you’ll get when you visit Barcelona in winter. There is also plenty of Barcelona winter activities to enjoy, including skating rinks, Christmas markets and holiday parades. Barcelona weather in December, January and February is cold and sometimes even gets snow. So, remember to pack warm clothing.

Barcelona, Spain


If you’re looking to shop up a storm, the Bilbao Christmas market is a great option. Formed by up to 40 stalls, the Christmas Market offers a large variety of products, including Basque products, Christmas decorations and of course, great food.

Visit Central Spain in the winter

Winter can see extremely cold temperatures in central Spain. However, there are still some amazing places to visit.




If you’re keen to browse museums and galleries during the winter months, Toledo is a great city to try. This is one of the most popular day trip destinations from Madrid. Some sights to see include the Catedral de Toledo, Casco Histórico de Toledo and Monasterio de San Juan de los Reyes.



The weather in Madrid in December is cold, but it is still a fantastic city to visit during this time. Madrid offers plenty of Christmas markets, a botanical garden Winter Wonderland, and the famous El Corte Inglés Christmas display.

Other Spanish cities, towns and islands to visit in the winter


Alicante is a port city on the country’s Costa Blanca in the southeast. It’s also the capital of the Alicante province. Alicante is an old city with an interesting neighborhood called Barrio de la Santa Cruz. This area has narrow streets, beautiful colored houses and a great nightlife scene. You can expect Alicante’s February weather to be around 65°F.

Costa del Sol

Costa del Sol is a comarca in southern Spain. It populates a narrow coastal strip with the Mediterranean Sea to the south. Costa del sol weather in February is warm with highs of 70°F, making it great for beach visits.


Ibiza is an island in the Mediterranean Sea off the eastern coast of Spain’s Iberian Peninsula. It is also known as Spain’s primary party island. If you want to experience the party atmosphere of Ibiza without the crowds, February is a great time to visit. Ibiza weather in February brings plenty of sun and highs of 70°F.


Experience winter in Spain

If it’s not the hot summers and sweltering cities near the coast, most people don’t think to find some amazing places to visit in Spain during the winter months. While Spain isn’t your usual winter destination, it makes for a great getaway for anyone seeking warmer temperatures or beautiful snowcapped mountains, extraordinary cultural experiences, and memorable food-filled experiences.

More from MediaFeed:

Like MediaFeed’s content? Be sure to follow us.

This article originally appeared on and was syndicated by

Top 10 places for expats to live in Spain in 2023


It’s not hard to find many amazing places to live in Spain. In fact, with Spain being so diverse in terms of the lifestyle it offers, the choices are almost unlimited. You could opt for a cosmopolitan city, a peaceful coastal town, a fun party island, or a historic village in the countryside.

Expats of various nationalities make up around 13% of the whole Spanish population. If you’re thinking about moving to Spain and joining the thousands of expats currently retired, working or studying in the country, then take a look at our list of some of the best places to live in Spain right now.


Gatsi / istockphoto


Best for retirement

  • Population: 120,000
  • Average home price: 2,860 €  per square meter
  • Average rent: 693 € for a 1-bedroom apartment


Several factors, including ease of accessibility and the presence of a large expat community, make Cadiz a great spot to live in Spain. It also offers a reasonable cost of living and an authentic, laidback charming lifestyle without the tourist crowds of the Mediterranean. The people from Cádiz are very friendly and always excited that foreigners want to live in their town.


Best for families

  • Population: 140,000
  • Average home price: 4,700 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 900 € for a 1-bedroom apartment
  • Marbella is a stunning old town with lots of culture, great cuisine, and lovely year-round weather. Perhaps the biggest draw of this town is its vast expanses of stunning beaches: the area proudly features some of the best beaches in the country. Many of these beaches are lined with lively restaurants and beach bars, and spending time at the seafront is an essential part of the everyday culture here. Marbella is often called the playground of the rich and famous, but for its inhabitants, it is a much more diverse location and a great place to live.



  • Best for coastal living
  • Population: 75,000
  • Average home price: 4,000 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 1,300 € for a 1-bedroom apartment

Fuengirola is a great Spanish town to live in as an expat. It’s located on the seafront and connected via train with the Malaga airport. Fuengirola has a handful of lovely beaches where you can relax over the weekend or after a long day of work. It also offers everything an expat is typically looking for, including safe communal areas, gorgeous weather, plenty of large supermarkets, and a few big shopping centers. It’s an affordable and lively town with an unassuming reputation that belies its undeniable charm.


  • Best for quiet living
  • Population: 350,000
  • Average home price: 3,780 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 900 € for a 1-bedroom apartment


Northern Spain is often overlooked by expats, but there are some real gems along the Atlantic Coast, including Bilbao. Bilbao may be one of the more expensive cities in Spain, and its industrial past is still apparent, but it features some beautiful architecture, delicious cuisine, including local pintxos, a lovely coffee shop scene and exciting Basque culture. It’s a city built against a beautiful backdrop of lush green mountains and featuring world-class beaches often swamped with surfers.


  • Best for a relaxed lifestyle
  • Population: 690,000
  • Average home price: 3,200 €per square meter
  • Average rent: 640 € for a 1-bedroom apartment


If you’re thinking about living in the Andalucia region, Seville is a great option. It’s the region’s capital city. From its Moorish architecture to the riverfront, Seville is seen as the most romanticized city in Spain. Even though it’s the fourth major city in Spain, Seville maintains its small-town feel. In fact, living in Seville means you get the perks of both worlds: the fast pace of a metropolis and the charm of a small town. The city also has reliable transportation, a relaxed lifestyle, and a very reasonable cost of living.


  • Best for socializing
  • Population: 230,000
  • Average home price: 3,400 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 560 € for a 1-bedroom apartment

Granada is Spain’s hidden gem and one of the best places to live in. It is located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Granada is less cosmopolitan than other destinations in Spain but has its own special charms. Its stunning cobbled streets and beautiful open areas are all walkable and there’s plenty to explore.

Granada is an affordable and sociable city. Any day of the week, you’ll find people socializing in the bars and restaurants of the city. There is also a well-connected expat community in the city, so you’re likely to meet like-minded people from your home country.


  • Best for seeing old-city charm
  • Population: 580,000
  • Average home price: 3,500 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 700 € for a 1-bedroom apartment


With its great weather all year round and relaxed lifestyle, everyone from families, couples, students and pensioners are attracted to this city in the south. It’s an old city, founded in 770 BC, but she wears her age well, with urban landscapes that embrace millennia of history and culture. Living in Malaga is also relatively cheap in comparison to other Spanish cities.


  • Best for experiencing food
  • Population: 790,000
  • Average home: 3,200 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 770 € for a 1-bedroom apartment

For food lovers, Valencia is one of the best cities in Spain. As the original creators of paella, the citizens of Valencia set the bar very high with their amazing culinary talents. It’s a large city but not so large that it feels overwhelming, and it offers a noticeably more relaxed lifestyle for residents.

Valencia is located in the Mediterranean and enjoys a lower cost of living compared to other cities. It also offers a good quality lifestyle and great healthcare facilities.


  • Best for finding exciting career opportunities
  • Population: 3.4 million
  • Average home price: 5,300 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 1,000 € for a 1-bedroom apartment

Located in the heart of Spain, Madrid is the country’s capital. It’s also a bustling, cultural, social and economic hub. Madrid has a lot to offer expats, whether you’re looking for a new setting, new job opportunities or to make new friends. It is an incredibly dynamic city, meaning it has something for everyone. Each neighborhood brings something different, like the vibrant, bustling area of La Latina and Lavapíes, the trendy district of Malasaña, the artsy streets of Las Letras and the high-end area of Salamanca.

Madrid is Spain’s second most expensive city. Daily expenses, however, are, more or less, the same as in most other Spanish cities. The cost of property is also largely cheaper outside of the city centre, so, many expats living in Spain decide to settle further from the centre.


basiczto / istockphoto


  • Best for experiencing culture
  • Population: 1.6 million
  • Average home price: 4,800 € per square meter
  • Average rent: 1,000 € for a 1-bedroom apartment


Barcelona is Spain’s second-biggest city and one of the safest and best places to live in the world. If you’re thinking about moving to Spain, Barcelona is an excellent option. It offers amazing weather, plenty of art museums, delicious cuisine, and a buzzing nightlife. Its main appeal, however, is its unrivalled architecture. Most of Antoni Gaudí’s buildings are in Barcelona, including the magnetic Sagrada Família and the extraordinary Park Guell. The city is also one of the top spots for digital nomads and entrepreneurs.

It’s important to keep in mind that Barcelona is the most expensive city in Spain. Property prices and the general cost of living are high. However, the living standard in the city is excellent, with clean streets and safe public areas.


If you’re thinking about moving to Spain from the US, one of the first things to consider is where you want to settle. Where you live can make a huge difference in all aspects of your life. This is why it’s important to choose the best place for you. Be sure to consider the options on our list and see which city or town best suits your needs.


  • Source for population data:  Wikipedia
  • Source for home and rent prices: Numbeo
  • Numbers may be rounded

This article originally appeared on and was syndicated by




Featured Image Credit: