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Cheap Flights to Spain

Where does one begin in describing a country as culturally diverse and singularly spectacular as Spain? One way to tackle the subject is to give weight to the wisdom of numbers and to do so simply by listing and describing the most popular destinations in western Europe's second-largest country. These are the places travellers from all around the world book flights to Spain to visit, year after year.

However, before proceeding to our list, remember that this is a country where an afternoon nap, or siesta, is considered part of everyday life. As a result, much of the general population is set to last considerably longer and thus later each day, giving rise to Spain's famed nightlife. There are not many places in the world where at 3am the night is still considered young but Spain is one and this holds true throughout much of the country.

The top Spanish destination is ... Tenerife. The largest of the Canary Islands, this popular destination lies in the Atlantic Ocean about 325km (200 miles) off the coast of north Africa. Blessed with a startlingly stable climate that changes little through the year, it is also known as the island of eternal spring and offers visitors a choice between the towns of the north and resorts in the south. Cheap flights to Tenerife give visitors the chance to lie on beaches, explore the stunning countryside and soak up the sunshine year round.

The top mainland Spain destination on our list is Alicante. As the entry point for the Costa Blanca region, beachlovers book cheap flights to Alicante and use the city as a starting point from the explore the numerous resorts of the area, with Benidorm one of the constant favourites. Its Mediterranean climate and position as a commercial and cultural hub of the area ensures a variety of amenities catering for every taste.

Third up is Malaga which is at the heart of the world famous Costa del Sol. The birthplace of Picasso and the setting for some of the area's finest beaches, visitors arriving from cheap flights to Malaga have the choice of a city break or seaside frolic.

Close on the heels of Malaga is Barcelona, the capital of Catalonia and the second-largest city in Spain, but fourth on our list. Best described as a beautiful place made all the more glamorous for its effortless combination of classical and modern architecture, Barcelona is host to some of the world's finest museums, galleries and theatres. Most of the tourists who book cheap flights to Bacelona are culture vultures, keen to see the many sights and the famous Gaudi buildings.

Next up and once again away from the mainland - as are the next three destinations, in fact - is Majorca, one of the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean. It's a place of staggering natural beauty featuring a coastline of beaches interspersed with countless secluded coves. Cheap flights to Majorca are easy to find and this is a popular destination with those looking for a cheap and cheerful summer holiday.

If you wish to visit the Canary Islands chain in the North Atlantic, book cheap flights to Lanzarote or cheap flights to Gran Canaria, the sixth and seventh destinations on our list. There are few surprises for visitors to these islands beyond perhaps the pleasant realisation that paradise is something one can get used to very quickly indeed.

Ibiza comes in eighth. With a not entirely undeserved reputation as a clubbing destination, this, the third largest of the Balearic Islands, features more than just a place to dance through the night. A wide selection of secluded beaches offers visitors a viable alternative in the form of any number of water sports, while local towns and villages present a view of local life. Though, traditionally, it was clubbers who flocked from cheap flights to Ibiza to enjoy its hedonism, it is fast gaining a reputation as a top resort for families and couples. Just venture a little further away from San Antonio to enjoy the tranquillity of its beautiful beaches.

Rounding out our top ten are Madrid and Valencia, two of the country's larger city destinations, each unique and enticing its own way and also heavyweights in the cultural stakes setting them apart from many other European cities.

Although this list is merely the tip of the Spanish sightseeing iceberg, it does suggest the scope of choice facing travellers planning a trip.

For more information and help finding the perfect destination for you, be sure to see our travel guide to Spain before setting off.