European retreats don't come much better than Spain, a Mediterranean paradise only a short flight but an entire world away. Spain is home to beautiful beaches and a hub of fantastic cultural adventures at your disposal. There are literally hundreds of resorts to choose from to enjoy your time in the country and the one you select will depend on what you are looking for in a holiday. Whether you are a foodie or simply want to find the perfect beach, here is our choice of the best resorts to choose when visiting Spain.

For the night life

Benidorm has become something of a legend for British tourists when it comes to partying. For those looking to organise stag or hen weekends it is often top of the list. And indeed, the resort deserves its reputation as a place where you can spend the small hours dancing, drinking and generally having a good time. Within this former fishing village you will find the famous streets where the gaudy neon lights attract revellers for some serious time on the disco floor.

The resort thrums at night with the sound of the latest beats and the bars remain open to serve any kind of drink to anyone who wants them. The area is also packed with other fun activities such as waterparks, golf and go karting meaning that the party can carry on for 24 hours a day.

However, it is possible to look beyond this reputation to find a place that offers a lot more interest to go with the nightlife. For starters, the beaches are simply superb. Levante and Poniente are a couple of sandy coloured monsters that can cope with the biggest influx of summer tourists and offer crystal clear waters. But despite their size they are clean and glorious. There is also a superb dining scene in the city with many upmarket establishments to go with the high end hotels where older travellers can enjoy a slightly less frenetic stay whilst still enjoying the delights of the city. Some of the best tapas in Spain can be found in this area.

The best thing about Benidorm is how close everything is, meaning you are never too far away from what you want to do next. It is not a place for everyone but everyone can find their place. So whatever you choose to do after hours, you should give Benidorm a go at least once in your life.

For the island life

Let us take a trip away from mainland Spain and head for the famed Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean sea. We choose Ibiza as an island to visit with resorts that offer something for everyone.

Ibiza is most famous for its club scene that attracts many of the world's best known DJs to the rich palette of clubs on the island. This is a side of Ibiza designed for the 24 hour party people who can think of no better way to spend an evening than dancing until they drop and then chilling out on the sands.

However, Ibiza has many wonders available to those looking for the ideal Spanish resort. The beaches are sensational and there are many of them. For those who like a day out amongst quiet villages or getting away from it all at a yoga retreat, there is also plenty of space for you on Ibiza. History fans can also find the castles and streets they love to explore, particularly in Ibiza town itself. In general, the Northern part of the island is quieter than the South but everything is within reach if you have a change of mind halfway through your holiday.

The choice is yours - clubbing or quiet contemplation and all the modern facilities, exciting water sports and daylong excursions you could want. The weather is also glorious and the sunsets are world famous, but what else would you expect from your Spanish holiday?

For the culture

The ultimate city break by a beach in Spain has to be Barcelona. This is a place with its own vibe, where tapas taste terrific, the architecture stops you in your tracks, there are lots of mazy streets to be explored and beautiful parks to enjoy under the hot Catalonian sun.

Almost everyone knows about the Sagrada Familia - Gaudie’s architectural masterpiece in the heart of Barcelona. Get up close and its unique features become even more jaw dropping and worth a trip to the city alone. Major museums abound in Barcelona including serious collections of Picasso and Jean Miro. Across the urban sprawl you will find smaller galleries where you can pick up something more affordable.

The indoor Boqueria Market has featured on countless travel programmes and you will spend hours wandering around sizing up the local produce and grabbing some unforgettable street food. The centerpiece fish carousel is probably the finest of its kind in the world. Head outside to walk along Las Ramblas with its heady mix of busy market and alluring tourist trap. At any time you can veer off a side road and head for the Gothic quarter for a day of boutique shopping, good food and Instagrams of the amazing architecture. At night there are many places to enjoy music, enough restaurants to last a lifetime and art festivals that take place throughout the year.

The beach itself in Barcelona is not spectacular but perfectly viable for sunbathing.
If you do want something more relaxing then hop on the local train that takes you along her coastline to enchanting seaside resorts such as Sitges.

For the history buff

If you want to stay at a Spanish resort that offers all the benefits of modern tourism but also provides a true sense of history, then Cádiz is a great choice. It may well be the oldest inhabited city in Europe with a history that goes back 3,000 years to Phoenecian times. After that the Romans rebuilt the city, and some of the architecture can be viewed today. Cádiz also played a key role in the exploration of the New World as well as being a pivotal trading port.

For the members of your family just looking for some beach action there are glorious stretches of sand to enjoy. But for the true adventurer in history the narrow streets, plazas and ruins of the interior are somewhere to get lost in for hours and days on end. You will find plenty of castles to walk around, a stunning cathedral, Moorish baths, Roman theaters, bustling markets, iconic towers and very walkable parks. The ruins are backed up by fascinating museums.

In terms of more typical holiday activities, the food is delicious in Cádiz with many amazing restaurants to choose from. Experience the unique medieval vibe that comes from sitting and enjoying a meal in this enchanting city. For winter travellers, February offers carnival time but there are fiestas to be enjoyed all year round.

As a Southern Spanish city expect Cadiz to be very warm in the summer so it makes sense if you are planning an off peak trip. Whenever you visit, you are in for a treat and an experience like no other.

For the foodie

San Sebastián is not only the food capital of Spain but some argue it is the best in the world for those who love a break where tasting menus matter as much as terrific beaches. On the North Coast of Spain, the sun may not be as warm all year round as other resorts but that is more than made up for by what you can find on the streets of this beautiful city. The beaches are not bad either.

There are more Michelin stars and bars per square yard in San Sebastian than any other city in the world (except Tokyo). This as a minimum should tell you about what to expect when you visit there. If you have the budget and the booking reference then by all means indulge in these famous culinary names, but there are plenty of other options as well. This is the home of the pintxos, the Basque region's very own version of tapas where the delicacies are served on sticks which are then counted at the end of the night in order to work out the bill. The variety of pintxos - from seafood to savouries - is astonishing and there will always be something on a night out to delight your taste buds. Pintxo bars are a way of life in the city and the place to hang out with both your own party and the locals who can't get enough of these sexy snacks on a stick.

If self catering is your thing then the markets of San Sebastian offer a glorious selection of produce to turn into delicious meals. Expect fresh fruit and veg, cheeses from heaven and wine that you will want to take home in a suitcase. Head for San Martín and La Bretxa markets to do your shopping.

It is not all about the food either. The city itself looks wonderful with its perfect promenades and strollable old town. And if you fancy the beach then there are three of them including the fabulous La Concha. Throw in a good dollop of culture and you have a resort that will appeal to gourmets and sun seekers alike. A truly magical place away from the big names of Southern Spain.

For all-inclusive

Club Med Magna Marbella is your ideal base to enjoy the Spanish equivalent of the French Riviera. This is Spain at its finest combining the modern and traditional in a city that has amazing beaches, thriving nightlife, centuries of history and lots to do both in Marbella and the local region. For golfers it is a place of pilgrimage with an entire valley of world class courses.

Stroll the old town and explore the cobbled streets, delightful plazas and tapas bars that are authentic and friendly. Head down to the marvellous beaches and party with the rich and famous or find your very own spot where you can watch the glorious vistas while enjoying a luxurious cocktail.

The Club Med resort itself is an oasis in the middle of all the excitement and romance. There are many activities to enjoy on a family holiday, such as padel tennis or swimming pool fun. Adults can get away from it all in the Zen Zone and juice bar and the all inclusive restaurants on site offer food that is as fine as anything that can be found in the best places in town.

If you want a resort that showcases the best of Spanish life, great weather and nature then Marbella is an easy choice to make and Club Med makes that choice even more wonderful for all the family.

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