Winter in Spain: 7 Warmest places in Mainland Spain for winter sunshine


Thinking of spending the winter in Spain? Or visiting Spain for a couple of weeks and getting away from the rubbish winter weather wherever you live?

I’m from southern England- our winters are cold, grey and full of drizzle and the thought of some winter sunshine in Spain (or any of these other amazing European cities to visit in winter) is the only thing which keeps me going!!

If you’re looking for some itinerary ideas for your Spanish winter adventures, here are 7 of the warmest places in Mainland Spain for you to explore, whether you’re in a touring Europe in a motorhome for the season, or just flying in for a well-earned city break.

Warmest places in Mainland Spain for winter sunshine- Malaga

Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain.

Spain in Winter- Malaga

Maggie- The World was Here First

One of the best places to visit if you want to catch some sunshine in the midst of a European winter is Málaga, Spain. This beautiful city is known for being a tourist hotspot and, in the winter months, is incredibly popular due to its wonderful weather.

Things to do in Malaga in winter

There are lots of great things to do in Málaga, as well. Though it may be a bit chilly to be lounging on the beach, you can still fill your days visiting the beautiful Moorish Alcazaba, admiring the unfinished Málaga Cathedral, or learning about local wine at the Museo del Vino.

As the birthplace of one of Spain’s most famous artists, it is also worth heading to the Picasso museum. And being one of the largest cities in Andalucía, no visit to Málaga is complete without sampling it’s incredible and delicious tapas restaurants, which are open all year, including in winter.

Caminito del Ray in Winter

You can also walk Caminito del Ray in the winter. This incredible path is open all year (closed every Monday) and only closes December 24th, 25th and 31st and Jan 1st.

Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain. Awesome places in Spain in winter

Walk the Caminito del Ray, Malaga, Spain in Winter

All in all, if you’re looking for the perfect European winter destination to escape the cold, then Málaga is an excellent choice for you!

Winter in Spain- how warm does it get in Malaga in December? 

With high temperatures rarely dipping below 17° even in the coldest months of December and January and abundant sunshine throughout, it is one of the best places to spend the winter in Spain.

Warmest places in Mainland Spain for winter sunshine- Barcelona

Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain. Barcelona

Mainland places in Spain in Winter- Barcelona

Vicki, VickiViaja
One of the best cities to visit in the winter in Europe is Barcelona. In this amazing city on the Northeast coast of Spain, the sun shines all year round, and even in winter it rarely rains.
In winter, there are fewer tourists in the Catalan capital, so prices are much cheaper and waiting times are shorter. You can wander the streets and enjoy the atmosphere of the city without fighting through tourists. There are also many fantastic places to stay in Barcelona, most of which are open all year.

Things to do in Barcelona in winter

Even if the beach is not suitable for swimming in winter, you can still go for a walk on the beach without it being overcrowded by tourists, like it is in the summer.

An attraction that you shouldn‘t miss in any season is the famous Sagrada Familia. The impressive basilica, designed by the designer Gaudí, is still unfinished but already one of the most important buildings in Europe. At Christmas time you will find a small Christmas market in the park next to it, where Christmas trees and Catalan handicrafts are offered for sale.
In the centre, next to the Barcelona Cathedral you will find another small market. But you also shouldn’t miss the rest of the Barrio Gótico, which surrounds the cathedral during your visit to Barcelona. Here you will find many wonderful narrow streets with cute shops and cafes.
Make sure to sit outside on a terrace while enjoying the extremely delicious Catalan wine from the region around Barcelona.

Is Barcelona really one of the warmest place in Spain in winter?

During the winter months, the temperatures are usually still between 8 and 18 °C on average, so you can spend a lot of time outside and enjoy the sun.

Spain in Winter Destinations- Nerja

Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain.

Beautiful Spanish destinations- Nerja

Paulina, Paulina on the Road

Nerja, in beautiful Andalusia, is often known for being one of the best day trips from Malaga. However, this charming city in Costa del Sol holds so much more for its visitors. Especially during winter.

As with many other parts of coastal Spain, you’ll find less tourists and more room to enjoy the ambience of the city.

Spain in Winter- how warm is Nerja in December?

The climate in Nerja during winter is a dream. Even though it might be too cold for a swim in the Mediterranean, you can still count on 10-15°C and loads of sunshine. Walking the streets, you may even be wearing only a t-shirt!

Things to do in Nerja in winter

The highlight of every trip to Nerja is a visit to the Caves of Nerja. They are some of the biggest caves you can find in Europe. You can basically compare them to an underground cathedral.

Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain. Nerja Caves

The incredible caves of Nerja

Next stop in Nerja is the “Balcony of Europe”. From here you have a beautiful view on the Spanish coast.

From here it’s only a stone’s throw to the countless bars and restaurants serving delicious tapas. You can choose to sit inside or out and spend some time people-watching in the sunshine.

Warmest places in Mainland Spain for winter sunshine- Seville

Seville- Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain.

Seville- a fantastic mainland destination in Spain for Winter

Roxy, The Coastal Campaign

While winter sets on much of the rest of Europe, Seville in southern Spain is enjoying very pleasant weather and plenty of sunshine. The city’s obscenely hot summers, often reaching above 40°C, also mean that winter is a more desirable time to get outside and explore.

Things to do in Seville in December

December is a great time to visit as the crowds of tourists have dispersed but the city remains relatively warm and lively. Many of the streets in Seville are lined with orange trees which you can expect to come into season in late December, adding to the city’s winter appeal.

This enchanting city has much to offer from delicious local cuisine, impressive architecture, and lots of culture and history. Be sure to attend a free flamenco show at La Carboneria, a popular local bar.

If you are a food lover, traditional-style tapas are available in many restaurants throughout the city, but two favourites amongst locals and tourists alike are Taberna Aguilas and Bar Alfalfa.From modern structures to Moorish palaces, Seville has a wide range of attractions worth visiting. Seville’s Cathedral, the largest Gothic cathedral in the world, sits in the centre of the city. Head up the tower of Giralda to admire the city’s views.

Next to the Cathedral is the Real Alcazar of Seville, a gorgeous palace with an impressive garden. For a more
contemporary landmark, the Metropol Parasol, or Las Setas is a wooden mushroom structure offering brilliant views and shaded spots. Lastly, Plaza de España is a beautiful square with extraordinary tile art and a picturesque canal.

Spain in Winter- how warm is Seville in December?

With an average winter temperature of 12°C, and about 5-6 hours of sunshine a day in winter, it is the perfect holiday destination. Don’t be surprised to find patrons happily eating outdoors, people wearing only light sweaters and temperatures reaching almost 20°C.


Andalusia Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain.

Spain in Winter- you can’t go wrong with Andalusia

Dhara, It’s not about the miles

Winter is a wonderful time to visit Andalusia, Spain’s gorgeous southern province. The region is known to have pretty much the mildest winters in all of Europe.

How warm is Andalusia in winter?

Since Andalusia is a region, you’ll see variations in climate, of course. There are two mountain ranges that run through Andalusia: the Sierra Morena in the north, and the Betic Cordillera (which contains the Sierra Nevada) in the south.
You’ll experience an alpine climate in the high mountains, with plenty of snow and cold temperatures. But if you love skiing, you will love visiting the Sierra Nevada in the winter!
In Seville, you’ll likely experience balmy daytime temperatures: 16-18c (60-70 F), but cooler nights. There’s lots of sunshine too!
All over Andalusia, you’ll find people wearing tees and short sleeves in February and March, and just light cover-ups in the evenings.

Things to do in Andalusia in Winter

In the plain between the two mountain ranges, you’ll find Seville, Andalusia’s capital and a very popular tourist destination with lots of things to do in winter.
In Seville, you’ll be able to visit the many Christmas markets and take part in the New Year’s Eve celebrations. You can enjoy warm tapas dishes, like soups and stews, because they are perfect for cooler evenings.
Córdoba, another popular Andalusian destination, is also located in the plain, but further inland. Nights can get colder here, but daytime temperatures should be pretty close to those in Seville, so you should be able to wander the streets of the Jewish Quarter, and take in the sights such as the world-renowned Mezquita without crowds.
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Granada, with its hillside location, has cold nights in the winter. If you venture out for a night tour of the Alhambra, for example, you’ll need to bundle up. But even in hilly Granada, daytime highs tend to be in the mid-50 degrees Fahrenheit, and you can get by with a sweater or a light jacket. And there’s lots of sun!
Spain’s famous Costa del Sol has pleasant daytime temperatures. The water is not warm enough to swim, but winter is a fun time to explore the numerous white villages in the region.
All in all, winter is a great time to head to Andalusia. With more sunny days and milder temperatures than most other places in Europe, Andalusia definitely makes the list of top winter destinations in Europe!


Valencia Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain.

Valencia- a perfect Spanish winter destination

Laura, Travelers Universe

Valencia’s mild temperatures make it one of the best places to visit for a bit of winter sun. With roughly 40 days of precipitation per year (mostly in autumn and spring), Valencian winter is quite dry and mostly sunny. In fact, you can easily enjoy Christmas at 20ºC (68.0°F) here and most days, temperatures reach 16+ degrees at noon. This makes Barcelona’s little sister a great place to visit year-round.

Valencia in December (for Christmas!)

If you visit Valencia in December, you can enjoy all the decorations, traditional European Christmas markets, and a festive atmosphere. Don’t forget, Christmas in Spain lasts until the 6th of January when the Three Kings come bearing gifts and a huge parade is organized with the occasion.

This is just perfect if you travel with a young family, as kids will love all the candies being thrown from the floats.

Things to do in Valencia in winter

Once the holidays are over, most shops clear stock and have huge sales. Stores usually get busy for a week or two in January, but you can find items that are so heavily discounted, it makes it worth braving the crowds.

On top of that, winter is considered the low season and even the best places to stay in Valencia can be rented at quite affordable prices.

In terms of attractions, the Old Town is as gorgeous as always. Although terraces might not be as popular when temperatures drop below 20ºC, you can still enjoy a coffee in the sun in the middle of the day.

And of course, you shouldn’t miss the City of Arts and Sciences, with its incredible white domes and arches. This is one of the most popular attractions in Valencia, but in winter you might not even have to queue at all!

Warm places on mainland Spain in Winter- Marbella

Marbella- Winter in Spain- Mainland Spain Travel Tips- Places to visit in winter in Spain.

Marbella- one of the best places in Spain for winter

Marbella is a town on the Southern coast of Spain known as the Costa del Sol.  Marbella is southwest of Malaga and takes about 45 minutes to drive to from Malaga airport. It’s famous for attracting glamorous celebrities and has well-known areas like the exclusive resort of Puerto Banus, where you can spot the superyachts and sports cars by day and go to the glitzy bars and clubs by night.

Things to do in Marbella in winter

The beaches are lovely long, stretches of golden sand. All along the coastline here you can walk the beautiful palm tree lined promenade and enjoy the beach views. Some of the smaller Churinguitos (little beach bars) will close during the winter months but the town of Marbella is still very much alive with a wide choice of cafés and restaurants.

It may be too cold to swim for everyone except the most (fool)hardy, but the views and sunsets are still breathtaking.

The old town of Marbella has cute, narrow, cobbled streets, perfect for wandering and admiring the pretty balcony flowers displays and traditional Spanish mosaic entrances.

How warm is Marbella in December?

The average temperature for December is 12°c and you can expect a good 6 hours of sunshine.

Winter in Spain- Frequently asked Questions:

Is Winter a Good time to visit Spain?

Absolutely! As you’ve seen above, there are loads of fantastic destination in mainland Spain for winter sunshine, as well as the chance to see the most popular tourist spots without many tourists!! The air may be cooler, but the sun still shines a LOT.

What are the winter months in Spain?

In Europe, winter starts in December and ends in February. However, temperatures cool from November and start to rise again in March. February is often the coldest month, which is why these warmest places in Europe in February are so popular!

Does it snow in Spain?

Yep. Spain has mountainous areas and there are places you can go skiing in winter. Andalusia boasts the best of both worlds- skiing near the coast! Normally, you don’t get much snow in coastal areas in Spain.

Which part of Spain is warmest in winter?

The further south you go, the warmer it will be! It can be windy, so inland can feel warmer, but if you go up in altitude, it will get cooler then too.

Spain in December; Is December a good month to visit Spain?

Sure! I love Christmas time in Spain. Christmas in Europe is more understated than in the US or UK, but you will still find Christmas markets in Spain and plenty of activities going on throughout December for you to enjoy. And you could spend Christmas on the beach- something on my bucket list!

Have you visited mainland Spain in winter? Where did you go? Where did you enjoy? Share your experiences in the comments below so we can all benefit.

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