Santander is famous for its fabulous beaches and its elegant holidaymakers: King Alfonso XIII used to spend his summers here nearly a hundred years ago, and the town is still popular among fashionable madrileños who like to be seen sauntering along the El Sardinero seafront with its belle époque architecture. When the sun goes down, the town is busy, with great restaurants and a lively bar scene. It is also a good place from which to explore the pristine countryside of Cantabria.
Santander is an upmarket beach resort where kings have rubbed shoulders with fishermen, and where university students in flip-flops kick back with well-heeled holidaymakers. The most popular of its beaches is El Sardinero, which, with its fine white sand and elegant architecture, lies a couple of kilometres from the town centre. Playa de la Magdalena, on the southern side of the headland, has a water sports centre while Playa del Bikini is good for snorkelling. If they are all too crowded, visitors can take a boat over to the long stretches of sand at Somo.
Away from the seafront, the city centre is lively, especially after dark. Many of the older buildings were lost in a huge fire in 1941, but there is still some beautiful architecture from bygone times. The elegant cathedral has been restored, and there are some interesting museums.Read More