Spain Explained

A guide for foreigners on every aspect of safe property ownership in Spain

Posts filtered by Life in Spain

Taking account of the weather in Spain

It seems an obvious thing to state but, it’s important that we take the weather into consideration. Anyone watching the electric storms in September in Spain must have felt just a little humble in the presence of such a force of nature.   We are, after all, at the mercy of the elements, no matter […]

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British passport problems continue

It’s one of the nightmare scenarios – you’re holiday’s booked but your passport needs renewing. It’s getting closer and closer to the date when you fly. Will it arrive back in time or should you make a last minute ditch attempt to retrieve it in person from the passport office? This scenario became reality for […]

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What is a vado in Spain?

You’ll have seen the signs on the outside of walls – a circle with a line through it that seems to appear at every spot where you want to park. The ‘Vado’ sign is usually found outside garages, entrances to drive ways and other places where, if you parked, you would block access.   The […]

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Prescription charges in Spain

 Whether you are on holiday or living in Spain, chances are that at some time you will need to pay a visit to the Spanish chemist or ‘farmacia’. The chemist in Spain is usually extremely good and in most outlets at least one member of staff will speak English. They give advice and hand out […]

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Finding your own piece of Parador in Spain

Have you come across this Spanish word before? A ‘Parador’ is a state-run tourist hotel usually found in rural beauty spots or places of historical interest. The Parador in Spain is often converted from interesting buildings such as castles or monasteries and offers much more than just bed and breakfast. The origins of the Parador […]

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Music is big business in Spain

Apparently, Spanish is becoming an increasingly popular language to learn. Why? Alongside Spain’s popularity as a holiday destination comes its attraction to young people as a ‘cool’ place with ‘cool’ people.   Some of this undoubtedly comes down to the passion for party, late nights in the summer and a rampant love affair with music […]

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Healthcare for retired expats in Spain: Who’s entitled?

health care for retired expats in spain

One of the main concerns for anyone coming to live in another country must be ‘how will I obtain the healthcare I need?’. This is particularly the case where you are perhaps a little older in years and know that more, rather than less, healthcare is on the horizon. Learn more on the healthcare for […]

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What to do about noise in Spain

Walk out into a bar or café area late at night in summer in Spain and you will be greeted by chatter. The Spanish talk, and often seem to talk loudly. Everyone seems to have a comment to make and usually at the same time. Depending on your view point this can be a wonderful, […]

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Cleaning up the act – dogs in Spain

Once a week I go for a run. I don’t go far and I certainly don’t break the sound barrier. Over the summer in Spain it can be difficult to find the best time to go. Ideally it would be early in the morning before the sun has gathered its strength. However, this would mean […]

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Water parks in Spain

What happened to the day when a little paddle in the sea was more than enough? No longer a simple slide into the water or an inflatable dinghy, the Spanish water park experience has to get more and more thrilling to keep them coming. Water parks in Spain are a good option during the hot, […]

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How to keep cool in Spain – top ten tips

As July and August descend in Spain, the Spanish people come into their own. The streets will be deserted at 2.00 as they retreat inside, only to emerge again as the sun starts to set and temperatures are returned to a sensible level. Contrast this with the habits of the typical northern European. At 2.00 […]

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Young faces come to Spanish politics

If you turn on the television and tune into a political debate you expect the politicians to match a particular profile; usually male, over the age of 50, conventionally dressed and perhaps a little overweight. It is wrong to stereotype and there are exceptions, but such is the appearance of the majority of those in […]

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Increased flight security – will it affect you?

It had been quiet for a while around the subject of airport security. This wasn’t to last. On the 2nd July 2014, new airport security restrictions were introduced from UK airports.  The US is concerned that events in Syria and Yemen could have an impact on security with new bombs being developed. They believe that […]

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The Golden Visa in Spain – a real incentive?

Amongst all the controversy over immigration in many European countries, most would acknowledge that there are times when immigrants can be a boost to rather than a drain on the economy. Spain recognises that for some of those wishing to obtain Spanish residency, there can be significant benefits for the indigenous population too. Making Spanish […]

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When you live in Spain – where do you go for your holidays?

There are beaches on your doorstep and you can enjoy all the facilities available to the holidaymaker every weekend of the year, if you choose. If you live in Spain, chances are that no one you left behind in your native country would expect that you’d ever need a holiday at all. Instead, if you […]

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Water safety in Spain

Keeping safe in the water is a particularly important issue around this time of year. Last July and August 155 people drowned in Spain. Of course, there are a number of self evident measures you can take that could be considered common sense. Making sure children can swim and know basic water safety is vital. […]

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Cycle helmet laws in Spain

When we first came to Spain, many years ago, it seemed to us that there was a kind of reckless disregard for ‘safety’ on the roads. Drinking and driving was not uncommon. Manoeuvres seemed to be made without warning and oblivious to other road users. And helmets in Spain, even for motorbikes, were almost non-existent. […]

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Recycling your cooking oil in Spain

In many countries recycling your waste has become something of an art form. Certainly in the UK, in some counties, there seems to be a different container for every different type of waste – newspaper and cardboard, bottles and tins, waste food and garden waste. The list goes on. In Spain, it’s generally much more […]

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Driving in Spain

Last week, I was driving in inland Murcia virtually alone despite it being the middle of the day and marvelling at what a joy driving in Spain is compared to the crowded roads in the UK. Despite covering close to 1000 km per week on business, the amount of delays that I have experienced are […]

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Who are the 90,000 Britains leaving Spain?

There seem to be mixed messages surrounding just how many of the British have left Spain and when. The number declared as being registered on the padrón in the Alicante province is down by 90,000 compared to 2012.   Most expats in Spain know of at least a few people who have taken the decision […]

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10 Alternative images of Barcelona

1. Would you like to live here? Casa Batlló With hardly a straight line in sight, Casa Batlló, designed by Anton Gaudí, is a very famous example of what happens when you let your imagination as well as architectural brilliance run away with you. Whether you would want to live in it or not, is […]

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E-cigarette legislation in Spain

Smoking in public continues to be a hot topic in most European countries. It seems governments are finding it difficult to work out how far to go/ not to go when it comes to the whole smoking issue. Matters have perhaps been complicated by the increasing popularity of the e-cigarette. The e-cigarette was seen by […]

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Ábaco news reel for April

Taking estate agents to task over the EPC There has been a lot of confusion around the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and what exactly is expected from house sellers and estate agents. Numerous warnings were given about how the Spanish government was going to ensure that this legislation was in place. It had all gone […]

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The chiringuito in Spain – delays in Orihuela

It’s almost a national institution. The chiringuito, or Spanish beach bar, can really make your holiday that extra bit special. Equipped with young, energetic individuals, music into the night and the cocktails and spirits to match, they are a key feature of most beaches in Spain. Although many people choose to take their own picnic, […]

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Spain and alcohol – finding the right balance

If you see someone drunk and disorderly in Spain, it is likely they’re not Spanish. No doubt reading this there are many examples you can think of to the contrary. However, in my experience, problems with alcohol are much more likely to be enacted by visitors to Spain from its northern neighbours rather than by […]

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