« Next Article: Toledo Marzipan - A Spanish Christmas Classic
Previous Article: Spanish Cinema »
Thursday, December 05, 2013 (read 807 times)
Christmas Shopping in Spainby Matthew
Christmas shopping in Spain offers many opportunities this period. Whatever it is exactly that you want, there’s something for you. From the well-known metropolises of Madrid and Barcelona to a small Christmas market in a remote village, you’ll be able to get all the Christmas presents you need!
Christmas in Spain
Barcelona is an obvious choice. Internationally recognized for being chic, trendy and full of Christmas cheer, it’s a great place to spend some time over the holidays. Along the Ramblas you’ll find lots of clothing stores, most of which you’ll already know. But it’s between 1st and 22nd December that things get really Christmassy, with an open air market running between those dates outside La Seu – Barcelona’s cathedral. Here you’ll find homemade Christmas decorations, trees and mistletoe. The atmosphere is particularly charming, and it's definitely worth a visit if just for the beauty of the Christmas lights on the backdrop of the lit-up cathedral. Next up is the capital, Madrid, where in the Plaza Mayor you’ll find another Christmas market selling artisan goods and Christmas decorations. There’s also a Nativity scene prominently displayed in the square. Aside from markets, Madrid offers a wealth of shopping opportunities, mainly on Gran Via and near the Puerta del Sol.
In the smaller towns and villages in the north of Spain there’s still a lot to be seen, and the slower pace of life probably makes your Christmas shopping a bit more relaxing. Salamanca, to the north west of Madrid, has some sweet little shops selling authentic Spanish goods, and the Plaza Mayor is Spain’s most famous. Heading further northeast to the region of Galicia, you’ll notice a change in climate: the region is a lot wetter and greener than the rest of Spain, and is sometimes called the Cornwall of Spain. For this reason, Galicia is very Christmassy, and you can indulge in some of its famous cuisine while you’re there. Obviously, the more off-the-beaten-track you go, the most authentic and less commercial the festive vibes become.
In Southern Spain, the atmosphere is slightly different. With a Mediterranean climate, these areas – while still cool – are not as cold as their northern counterparts, and thus Christmas shopping in Spain has a distinct feel here. Temperatures in Seville and Malaga during December are normally about 15ᵒC (59ᵒC), and with the sun normally shining you can even sit outside for a bite to eat. In Seville, like much of Spain, you’ll find the usual mix of regular stores like Zara and Mango – which, by the way, are much cheaper than abroad – and the obligatory Christmas market. There are even the street vendors selling roast chestnuts, creating that recognizable wintery smell. In Malaga, the story is pretty much the same, although with a coastal vibe. From the large international clothing chains to the more independent boutiques, you’ll get the perfect presents for you and your loved ones. After a tiring morning at the shops, make sure to have a leisurely lunch by the sea.
Keywords: christmas shopping,christmas shopping in spain,shopping in spain,spain christmas markets,christmas in spain,spain at christmas
Posted In: Spain