Cantabria & Green Spain


Cantabria is a Spanish historical region and autonomous community with Santander as its capital city. It is bordered on the east by the Basque Autonomous Community (province of Biscay) on the south by Castile and León (provinces of León, Palencia and Burgos), on the west by the Principality of Asturias, and on the north by the Cantabrian Sea (Bay of Biscay).

Cantabria belongs to Green Spain, the name given to the strip of land between the Bay of Biscay and the Cantabrian Mountains, so called because of its particularly lush vegetation, due to the wet and moderate oceanic climate. The climate is strongly influenced by Atlantic Ocean winds trapped by the mountains; the average precipitation is about 1,200 mm (47 inches).

Cantabria is the richest region in the world for archaeological sites from the Upper Paleolithic period, although the first signs of human occupation date from Lower Paleolithic. The most significant site for cave paintings is that in the cave of Altamira, dating from about 37,000 BC and declared, along with nine other Cantabrian caves, as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

The modern Province of Cantabria was constituted on 28 July 1778. The Organic Law of the Autonomy Statute of Cantabria was approved on 30 December 1981, giving the region its own institutions of self-government.


Green Spain - Cantabria's Rugged Coastline


One of our most popular tours, on the Cantabrian coastline of northern Spain where beautiful beaches, soaring mountains, elegant resorts and peaceful fishing villages combine to provide an interesting and relaxing holiday.


5 day tour – Sailing from Plymouth – Coach Tour Holiday & Group Travel

Day 1

Depart the UK.

Depart Plymouth for overnight crossing to Spain, enjoy the on-board facilities including restaurants, bars and live entertainment programme.

Day 2


Arrive Santander, optional guided tour of the city to see the 13th century Gothic cathedral, the Magdalena Palace, the sweeping Sardinero beach and Cabo Mayor lighthouse. Carry on to selected hotel for two night stay.

Day 3

Picos de Europa.

Full day excursion to Picos de Europa national park, with some of Spain's most striking mountains. At Fuente Dé take an optional ride on the cable car for unforgettable views. Visit the Monasterio de Santo Toribio near Potes, where a relic of Christ's cross is believed to be kept. Lunch can be arranged in the mountains near the town of Potes.

Day 4

Santillana del Mar and Altamira Caves.

Visit the enchanting medieval city of Santillana del Mar and the Colegiata, a former 12th century monastery. After lunch, we suggest the Altamira caves with wonderful cave paintings. Overnight ferry from Santander.

Day 5

Return to the UK.

Arrive in Plymouth. Disembark and journey home.