Spain has much to offer those in search of a charter holiday with a little bit of everything. The old image of Spain as merely a destination for package-holiday tourists (complete with straw donkey and sombrero hat) has mostly been swept away. These days, places such as Marbella, Valencia, and Barcelona will attract the kind of up-market tourism undreamt of two decades ago.
While the package-holiday horrors of places like Benidorm remain, they have been supplemented by boutique hotels, five-star resorts, and exclusive “urbanisations”.
In terms of charter destinations, there are three main cruising areas to consider ‚ the Atlantic coast, the Mediterranean coast, and the Balearic Islands. The Atlantic coast is fascinating, and in parts very beautiful, but this bit of coastline forms the southern edge of the Bay of Biscay.
That means that the weather can be unpredictable, and when the big rollers sweep in from the Atlantic things can get very uncomfortable in a yacht. Added to that, facilities for big yachts are limited, as are secure anchorages. If the weather is good, this is a fabulous place to be‚ but you can’t rely on it.
The Mediterranean coast, however, combines predictable weather and tides, plenty of facilities for visiting yachts, and some wonderfully interesting places to visit. From Marbella on the Costa Del Sol to Barcelona and the Costa Brava, full-service marinas, enchanting fishing villages, and beautiful sandy beaches are all at your disposal.
But by far the most popular Spanish destination for charter yachts are the Balearic Islands, 100 miles or so west of Valencia on the Spanish mainland. Mallorca is probably the most popular of the islands, but both Minorca and Ibiza both have a lot to offer, in very different ways.
The islands lend themselves perfectly to a two-week charter holiday, taking in lively night-sports, picturesque calas, excellent beaches, and beautiful coastlines.