7 reasons to visit Andalucia this summer

Southern Spain's sun-baked region of Andalucia has plenty more to offer visitors than flamenco, tapas and sangria. Here's why you should take a holiday there this summer
Flamenco dancing in Andalucia. Photo: Shutterstock
Flamenco dancing in Andalucia. Photo: Shutterstock

Flamenco dancing in Andalucia. Photo: Shutterstock


Spain's southern destinations are often out-shined by the Costa del Sol and tourists seeking sun and sand. But there are a wealth of places to explore across Andalucia, from impressive national parks to ancient cities. Below you'll find a few excuses to travel there right now...


1. For mighty mountains


 

There's more to southern Spain than sun-drenched, sandy beaches. Located to the east of Ronda, the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park is home to spectacular scenery, walking trails, camping spots, caves and more. On Insight Guides' Andalucia Explored holiday, you'll drive up and through the mountains on your way to your first city stop. 

2. For the region's modern architecture



Across Spain, you'll discover interesting, unique architecture to rival its Western European neighbours. Seville is home to both the bizarre and the beautiful, including the wooden Metropol Parasol, built in 2011. Located at La Encarnación square, in the city's old quarter, the structure has caused controversy in the past but is now a must-see on a trip to the city.  


3. And the not so recent structures too...



The region has a long and exciting history with landmarks to reflect this. Ronda's Puente Nuevo, which spans the El Tajo gorge, is an impressive sight. This centuries-old structure, officially started in 1755 after a previous attempt collapsed, connects the city's old and new towns. Perched on a rocky bluff with sheer walls falling away dramatically over 180m, it's safe to say you'll find a unique view or two.


4. For the world's greatest art



Malaga, home of the cheap package holiday, is also famous for being the birthplace of Picasso. The Museo Picasso houses a collection that spans the painter's entire career. A short walk north and you'll find the Casa Natal de Picasso, where the artist spent his first years. The house is now a small museum containing early sketches, ceramics, and photographs. 


5. For a lesson on local traditions



Seville's Flamenco Museum will guide you through the region's most fascinating dance form; interactive displays show the origins and development of the flamenco style. The music, video and even costume displays make this one of the most engaging museums in the country. Plus, you can finish off your tour with an authentic performance, which is included in Insight Guides' Andalucia Explored itinerary. Vamanos!

6. For centuries of history



Granada's Alhambra fortress is Andalucia's must-see destination. Insight Guides' Andalucia Explored trip devotes a half-day to exploring this fortress in detail. Touring this impressive Moorish palace, you'll discover beautiful carvings, breathtaking architecture, secluded courtyards and intricate details. Make time for the Nasrid Palaces, the Palacio de Carlos V and the Alcazaba citadel, as well as the tranquil Palacio Generalife gardens.


7. For navigating a maze of backstreets, uncovering secrets as you go...



Sometimes our favourite thing to do on a holiday is get lost among the backstreets, discovering quiet cafes, local hang-outs and pretty lanes on the way. With plenty of free time on your Andalucia Explored itinerary with Insight Guides, you can uncover the best-kept secrets of each city stop, from Granada to Seville, Malaga to Jerez de la Frontera. 


What are you waiting for? Talk to our local experts and start planning your trip today...

Alternatively, review our ready-made trip, taking in each of Andalucia's main cities 

Get to grips with each city's highlights in our round-up

Andalucia features as one of our favourites honeymoon destinations; find out why here