It may be the middle of July but, summer’s not over yet. What’s top of your summer vacation list? Somewhere with a pool? Somewhere close to the beach? Or somewhere with sea view where you can enjoy a drink at sunset? Sounds good to me. Here are some suggestions for great budget fun in the sun on the Iberian Peninsula.
For indecisive folk who fancy both beach and city break, Barcelona is a happy compromise. Barceloneta is the popular city beach within walking distance of the Gothic quarter. Alternatively, stay around Poble Nou for local restaurants, easy access to the beach and a short metro ride from the city centre. This way you get the best of both worlds with cultural attractions, seductive Barcelona nightlife as well as soaking up some sunshine. You might also like to consider a day trip along the coast to Sitges, with a bustling gay community as well as a pretty beach.
Casa Gracia Barcelona Hostel
If you are considering summer in the city, top of your list should be air-conditioning or some outdoor space. With both air-conditioned shared and private rooms, the boutique Casa Gracia Barcelona Hostel not only delivers on gorgeous design, it has a charming tiled terrace too. It’s a perfect spot to start your night on the town so pick up a bottle of wine to enjoy at dusk or join other guests for paella on Mondays.
Equity Point Sea
A hop, skip and a jump from the Balearic sea and sand, Equity Point Sea Hostel is perfect for beach bums. Choose from 4, 6, 8 or 9-bed dorms all equipped with air-conditioning and en suites. At lunchtime, it’s a short walk back to the hostel for a siesta or why not buy fresh ingredients from the fabulous La Boqueria market and use the hostel self-catering facilities to pack a picnic. By night, you are just 10 minutes walk from Las Ramblas and the hostel operates free daily tours and offers a free breakfast.
Keep cool in the lush grounds of The Alhambra palace or head into the Sierra Nevada mountain range to enjoy a dip in the lakes. The seductive city of Granada offers steamy nights of flamenco, alfresco tapas and sunny plazas. [Editors Note: We have a good friend that just got back from Granada and can’t stop raving about it!}]
Oasis Backpackers Hostel
After a day of admiring The Alhambra, return to Oasis Backpackers Hostel Granada for some equal stylish architecture and interior design. This boutique hostel offers bright and modern rooms and communal spaces including self-catering facilities. Guests can soak up the sun on the roof terrace with views over the Arabic Albaicín neighborhood. They host Argentinean BBQ nights, a welcome drink on arrival and the chance to win free beer on quiz nights.
A good opportunity to combine city and beach break on your summer holiday, Lisbon can provide culture, nightlife and sunbathing rolled in to one. The nearby beaches fly the European Blue Flag for excellence and are popular with locals and tourists alike. At Guincho, why not try your hand at surfing, which fantastically wild beach and jut a 25-minute train ride from Lisbon. The shadowy and historic areas of Alfama and the Barrio Alto offer tile-clad buildings and orange tree dotted plazas, great places for keeping cool when exploring the city. Take tram 28 for a 40-minute city tour and lean out the window of this antiquated machine to feel the wind in your hair. Nightlife gets off to a late start around 11pm and crowds spill pleasingly onto the streets.
Just a few roads back from the shoreline, most rooms at Beria Mar hostel offer views across the Tagus river. The interior is bright and colourful and the surrounding area of Alfama is Lisbon’s historic quarter. They offer a free breakfast, lounge and games room.
And the best bit? Most of these properties are offering 20, 30 or 40% their normal rates in HostelBookers Summer Sale!
Thanks to Cheryl from Hostelbookers who provided these great deals and this post!
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