Christmas in Cantabria
- Juan de la Cosa
You're assured of a warm welcome from the Santillana family at this small and friendly hotel.
- The Guggenheim at Bilbao
Visit the Guggenheim Museum to admire its collection of modern art.
- Picos de Europa
Venture deep into the Picos de Europa mountains and national park on an optional trip.
- Fun and festivities
Celebrate Christmas the Spanish way.
Explore this city on a Boxing Day trip.
- All Inclusive
Celebrate at this small seaside town on Spain’s north coast
Experience the essence of true Spain with a stay in the idyllic small fishing town of Santoña which backs on to the snow-capped Picos de Europa, and enjoy an especially warm welcome from the family who run the hotel. After a welcome drink and dinner on your day of arrival, look forward to relaxing days and a choice of included and optional excursions. There’s a full-day included visit to Bilbao on Christmas Eve, where you can explore the old town’s labyrinthine streets and browse the stalls in the Christmas markets, then tour the fabulous Guggenheim Museum, whose collection of modern art is housed in a remarkable building cloaked in titanium. You return to the hotel for a traditionally Spanish Christmas Eve dinner including a seafood spectacular.
On Christmas Day you're free to enjoy the hotel facilities, or perhaps you’d like to take a stroll along Playa de Berria and work up an appetite for your special tapas lunch with a champagne Christmas toast. There’s an included half-day excursion to the capital of Cantabria, where you can see the royal summer palace of Alfonso XIII Palacio de Magdalena, the Gothic cathedral, and Santander’s charming fishing quarter, Barrio Pesquero, then the rest of your stay is at your leisure. Perhaps wander in to the town of Santoña, take a cable-car up to the snow-dusted peaks of the Picos de Europa or visit medieval Santillana del Mar on optional excursions.
- Optional travel insurance underwritten by Great Lakes Insurance SE, UK Branch and additional cancellation rights on overseas holidays for over 50s, or a price reduction if not required (cover is subject to medical questions)
- Return flights and transfers
- Two excursions
- Traditional Christmas lunch
- All breakfasts, lunches and dinners
- Free bar open 12 hours a day
- Wine and water at lunch and dinner
- Free local bus tickets to Santona
- Porterage at your hotel
- Free Wi-Fi at your hotel
Juan de la Cosa, Playa de Berria, 14 - 39740 Santoña, Cantabria, España
You can look forward to a warm welcome and personal service from owners Felipe and Margot at their comfortable locally rated 4-star hotel. They take special pride in the hotel's restaurant, which has splendid views of the beach and sea as well as delicious dishes.
The hotel has 55 contemporary-furnished rooms.
You can upgrade to a sea-view room for a supplement, subject to availability. Fridges will be available in 2020.
Tea coffee making facilities
Food and Drink
Enjoy delicious home cooked dishes typical of the region: savour buffet-style breakfasts, tasty tapas or snack lunches at the bar or on its terrace and waiter-served dinners in their locally acclaimed à la carte restaurant where seafood is a speciality. Complimentary tea and cake is also available at 4pm daily in the bar.
A delicious demonstration
The hotel prides itself on its food, and during your stay you’ll be able to enjoy an included cookery demonstration – a great way to take a taste of Spain back to your own kitchen. As the chef cooks up a storm, you’ll be able to taste a selection of wine from the area, each carefully selected by the hotel’s owner, Felipe.
During your stay, you can enjoy the following programme of activities and entertainment. Some activities are at an additional charge. Activities may change from time to time.
- A cookery demonstration with a selection of wines
- Live music/flamenco dancing
- A talk on interesting facts and differences between the British and Spanish cultures
- Mystery tours (extra charge)
- Table tennis
- Table football
- Golf - Available nearby – please ask the resort staff for details
Heated indoor pool
You’re well placed for exploring this region: scenic walking trails lead right from this beachfront hotel’s doorstep and there are birdwatching opportunities at a nearby reserve. The hotel is two kilometres from the centre of Santoña which can be reached by local bus (guests receive free bus tickets). Here you will find shops, cafes and restaurants. There’s plenty to do in the area, from enjoying the splendid beach and delicious food, to exploring the mountains and discovering age-old villages.
Bilbao airport is an hour’s drive away and Santander port is a 45-minute drive away.
Experience the essence of true Spain and immerse yourself in the culture, gastronomy, language and landscapes with a stay in the idyllic small fishing town of Santoña, which backs onto the mighty Picos de Europa. Set on Spain’s northern Cantabrian coast, it fronts a superb three-kilometre-long beach of fine white sand, the Playa de Berria. This spectacular beach and surrounding hillsides are popular with walkers, while the nearby marshes are rich in bird life and the mountains offer plenty of options for outings.
Bilbao and the Guggenheim
Bilbao stands on the estuary of the River Nervión, which forms a ría, a stretch of water similar to a Norwegian fjord. The capital of the Vizkaya province, it became a centre for shipbuilding and manufacturing during the mid-19th century. Its old town is a labyrinth of narrow pedestrian streets branching out from the Plaza Nueva. It’s one of the culinary capitals of Spain, whether you’re looking for a Michelin-starred restaurant or want to feast on tapas from the numerous bars.
The most dramatic addition to Bilbao’s cityscape in recent years is the Guggenheim Museum, a branch of the famous museum in New York which opened in 1997. Designed by the North American architect Frank Gehry, the building is a contortion of shapes, with limestone blocks contrasting with curtains of glass and curved, bent forms draped in titanium. Its collection of modern art is no less fascinating, with work from the Guggenheim in New York and local acquisitions to analyse and admire.
Included on 7 nights itinerary
Explore the capital of Cantabria, which is home to the royal summer palace of Alfonso XIII, Palacio de Magdalena, the Gothic cathedral, and the charming fishing quarter of Barrio Pesquero.
Included on 7 nights itinerary
Picos de Europa
The highest range of mountains in the Cantabrian Cordillera is just 30 kilometres from the sea. The region, which covers 700 square kilometres, was declared a national park in 1995 and is the largest in Europe. Venture deep into the Picos de Europa's embrace on this excursion which will take you along the narrow Hermida Ravine, in the valley of the River Deva. Reach the delightful mountain village of Potes, which is set in a natural amphitheatre surrounded by glorious mountain peaks, with free time to admire the arresting scenery and attractive old stone houses. The most interesting building is the Torre del Infantado, a 15th-century tower that serves as the Town Hall. Next, a cable-car ride offers a different view of the mountains that is sure to take your breath away.
Optional on 7 nights itinerary
Santillana del Mar and San Vicente de la Barguera
Drive across Cantabria, pausing at San Vicente de la Barquera, an attractive old town backed by the Picos de Europa mountains, en route to the beautifully preserved medieval village of Santillana del Mar. From the cobbled Calle de Cantón you can stroll past 15th to 18th-century mansions with aristocratic coats of arms, to the Romanesque collegiate church, which was built to house the relics of St Juliana. Although preserved as a Spanish national monument since 1889, and therefore protected from modern developments, Santillana del Mar is still a living, working village. It's also said to be three times a lie, as it is not santo (holy), nor llano (flat) or del mar (by the sea)!
Optional on 7 nights itinerary