Santander? Is that a city or a bank?

Have you ever heard of Santander, a city in northern Spain? If you haven’t, apart from being the namesake of the world-famous bank, Santander is one of the most beautiful cities in Spain.

Located on the northern coast of Spain, in the region of Cantabria, Santander was once relatively unknown to foreigners. However, thanks to improvements in communications, it has gained a lot of popularity among visitors in recent years.

Why is this happening? At HiCantabria, we generally discuss the Cantabria region, which includes Santander. We have dedicated sections for preparing a trip to Cantabria, but why should you include Santander in your travel plans?

Here are five reasons why you should book a flight, train, or car and visit the city of Santander.

5 reasons to visit Santander ...

1 - Its beauty

Located on the northern coast of Spain, Santander is a city with a privileged geographical location facing south. It overlooks the impressive Santander Bay, where you can see the various mountains of the Cantabrian mainland.

Moving to the northeastern part of the city, you will experience an unforgettable view of the Cantabrian Ocean. All of this is complemented by the historic Magdalena Peninsula and the iconic beaches.

It’s a perfect place if you enjoy a quiet walk surrounded by nature, stunning views, and a safe environment.

2 - Its gastronomy

The privileged location we mentioned before makes Santander and Cantabria a unique land for its variety of high-quality food.

From fresh seafood from the clean Cantabrian Ocean to the best meat thanks to the green pastures, all mixed with tasty vegetables and famous desserts, the region offers a rich culinary experience.

The number of great restaurants in Santander is well known, ranging from budget-friendly spots to top Michelin-starred establishments. And don’t forget the world-famous pinchos! Want to know more?

Check out our Bars and Restaurants section!

3 - Its history

Originally founded by the Romans as “Portus Victoriae,” Santander has experienced different historical stages throughout its life. From ancient times, evidenced by artifacts in the Prehistoric Museum of Santander, to the era when ships bound for America were built in the city, and the luxurious period when the Magdalena Palace served as the summer destination for the kings of Spain.

Santander has also experienced some tragic moments, such as the explosion of the Machichaco boat in 1893, the Spanish Civil War, and the terrible fire that destroyed most of the city in 1941.

4 - Its culture

Continuing the trend seen in neighboring cities such as Bilbao or San Sebastián, Santander is expanding its cultural offerings.

The opening of the Botín Museum in 2017 marked a significant shift towards a city focused on culture.

Additionally, Santander Bank is set to open another large museum in the coming years, currently being constructed in the old Santander Bank Headquarters.

Moreover, the Reina Sofia Museum is also under construction in the former Bank of Spain Building.

With numerous museums to explore, ranging from the Maritime Museum to historical museums, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

5 - Its outdoor activities

No matter if you like to relax on the beach in summer or seek some adrenaline, Santander has something to offer for everyone.

As you can see in our Plans in Cantabria section, there are many activities to enjoy in Santander:

From surfing to golf, scuba diving, or simply enjoying a walk, you can do it all!

Do you need more information?

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