We Compare the Best Ways to Get Around

Nichole S. Gehr

Transportation in Spain gives a good deal of good solutions for travelers, from quickly higher velocity trains to discounted airways to shockingly inexpensive bus routes and hassle-free auto rentals.

What is the finest transportation in Spain for your vacation? That definitely relies upon on your demands.

If you have plenty of time, then using the bus may possibly be the most reasonably priced possibility. If you’re in a rush, traveling might be the quickest way to see the region. If you are hunting for velocity and scenery, but with a slightly greater spending plan, Spain’s high speed trains may possibly be just your ticket.

The best Transportation in Spain
Gran Vis Spain in Madrid

Finest Options for Transportation in Spain

Spain is a single of Europe’s most common tourist places, and it’s simple to see why. From the solar dappled beaches of Andalucía, to the quaintly cobbled streets of chaotic Madrid, to the affordable tapas and beverages in Granada there’s a lot to hold vacationers occupied.

Holidaymakers thinking how to get about Spain have a good deal of choices. Now that we’ve shown a several, allows compare the major modes of transportation in Spain.


Touring by educate is a person of the most well known types of transportation in Spain, and for superior motive. Spain trains and routes are normally economical, simply readily available, and very affordable.

Trains vacation extensively within Spain having said that they also join to other nations.

The substantial-speed coach or AVE (Alta Velocidad Española) operates concerning Spain’s key metropolitan areas. Operated by Renfe (Purple Nacional de los Ferrocarriles Españoles), the AVE process is the longest HSR technique in Europe, and next only to China globally. Trains in Spain access speeds of 300 moreover kilometers per hour (186 miles for every hour).

Transportation in Spain RENFE Avant and Alvia in Desfiladero de los Gaitane Spain

Trains give lots of styles of tickets, including 1st class (Preferente) and 2nd course (Turista) cabins and some present cafe-bar services. You can e-book most practice tickets by way of the Renfe website, Rail Europe or a 3rd celebration website like Rail.Ninja.

Round excursion teach fares are normally much less expensive in Spain than having two, different, 1-way tickets.

Worldwide connections from Spain

Spanish trains have great connections to France and Portugal.

There is no direct rail line to the nation of Andorra, which doesn’t have a rail services in the place. To achieve Andorra, acquire a prepare from Barcelona to L’Hospitalet-près-l’Andorre (France), and then change to a bus from France to Andorra la Vella in Andorra.

Similarly, there is no immediate coach relationship to Gibraltar, which has no rail provider. Even so, you can just take a educate to the Spanish aspect of the border with Gibraltar), and then consider a bus additional into Gibraltar appropriate.

There is chat of an undersea tunnel connecting Spain and Morocco, but for now there’s no teach provider from Spain to Morocco.

Walking by the train in Marrakech Morocco

Regional rail networks in Spain

In addition to the substantial pace network, there are also lesser regional prepare expert services in Spain, which work a mainly commuter companies. They include FGC in Catalonia (such as Barcelona), Cercanias RENFE (which operates numerous suburban rail networks), FEVE (Northern Spain), Euskotren (Bilbao, San Sabastian and a number of smaller towns).

Like in other places in Europe, it will take a little imagining to figure out if a rail go is value it for you. There are three styles of rail passes in Spain.

  • Spain only. Spain only passes appear as the Renfe Spain Move, or the Eurail Spain Pass.
  • Two nation passes. You can use the Eurail Pick out Move to pair Spain with Portugal, France, or Italy.
  • Many nation passes. The Eurail World Move lets you travel on 4 adjacent international locations by educate.

It often requires a bit of quantity crunching to determine out if a move is more affordable than obtaining specific tickets, or far more inexpensive than executing a combo like traveling, leasing a motor vehicle, and having the bus even so if you like looking at the countryside by ground and want trains about buses or automobiles, then acquiring a train go in Spain unquestionably can make sense.

Looking down the moat at the Plaza de Espana
Searching down the moat at the Plaza de Espana

Driving in Spain – Motor vehicle

As Canadians, we’re utilized to driving all over the place. Canada’s an huge nation, and long distance general public transportation is definitely lacking listed here.

Fortunately, the public transportation procedure in Spain, like most European nations around the world, is great. In the course of our time in Spain, we did hire a car or truck for our highway vacation via Spain and Portugal, but most of the time we relied on general public transportation to get all-around,

In Spain, you drive on the ideal hand facet of the street, and the driver’s seat is on the still left facet of the automobile. Coming from Canada, this was acquainted to us, making driving less complicated, but if you occur from the British isles or Australia, in which you drive on the left side the road, it could be more of a problem to get altered.

The driving age in Spain is 18, and you are going to need to have both a valid driver’s license and an International Driver’s Allow (IDP).

Freeways (autovias in Spanish) are plentiful and effectively managed through Spain. We uncovered the highways we traveled in Southern Spain to be smoothly paved, with traces just lately painted. We did locate a good deal of roundabouts on the streets in Spain, which include huge, active roundabouts in Madrid.

As North Us citizens, we’re used to wide roads with plenty of parking. It was certainly a challenge to change to driving in Spain as a result of the narrow, winding streets of historic city facilities like Avila, Spain, where roads had been originally built for pedestrian or horse site visitors.

Flamenco dancing at La Carboneria in Sevilla

Parking in Spain

Parking in big cities like Seville and Madrid was amazingly challenging, and even smaller facilities like Avila’s city heart did not have a great deal of commonly out there parking. On road parking is frequently in tiny, limited spaces, which could be a problem if your parallel parking capabilities aren’t on stage even so there are parking loads and even parking garages all-around some of the significant vacationer places about the nation.

Spain’s toll technique

We uncovered Spain’s road toll method to be significantly significantly less complex and puzzling than toll roads in Portugal.

You can pay out Spanish tolls with a credit history card or cash manually, or electronically, by means of the By using-T technique.

For guide tolls, you get a ticket from a booth when you enter the motorway, and then pay the toll at a further booth as you exit, in either the credit rating card or cash lane.

Some motorways allow for electronic payments, but you are going to will need a unique Via-T system. Appear for the Telepeaje, By using-T or T signal on the motorway. You ought to use one particular of the lanes with the By using-T signal if you’re working with a gadget and the gadget quickly registers the amount of money of the toll. These products are available, for a compact price, from quite a few banking companies in Spain even so you’ll have to have an account at the bank to get just one.

Toll costs fluctuate relying on the road and the prices vary from region to region. You can uncover Spain’s toll expenses on many web sites nonetheless this one from Sixt (just click on on Spain) is swift and very simple.

Cala S’Amarador Mondrago Organic Park in Majorca Spain

Pros of Renting a Automobile in Spain

Renting a vehicle in Spain permit us go to little cities and villages in Spain and Portugal that would have been extremely complicated to see without the need of a vehicle. It was also the most value productive alternative for our family members of 4 and allowed us to expend as significantly or as minimal time at each individual spot without worrying about restricted timelines.

Drawbacks of Renting a Auto in Spain

1 of the important hassles of renting a automobile in Spain was the renting a vehicle hassle variable. We had to determine out insurance plan for the motor vehicle, tolls on the motorways, and deal with often baffling instructions. The worst was most likely having to come across parking, primarily in metropolis centers, the place parking was challenging to come across and normally high-priced.


While Spain has a good coach procedure, buses choose up where trains aren’t accessible. Buses also operate on a lot of routes that are also served by trains, and we normally observed the bus fares to be a lot more inexpensive than practice fares. However, bus routes normally took much lengthier than educate routes.

We located bus transportation in Spain usually very affordable. Most smaller centers, like Nerja, Spain, are perfectly served by community very long distance bus routes.

In new years, ALSA has purchased out many more compact bus firms, giving it a a lot more consistent feeling and more possibilities when reserving on-line.

Buses can be booked by using Movelia, Alsa, or Avanza internet sites.

Kids on the bus in Spain
Our kiddos on the bus in Spain

Strengths of Using the Bus in Spain

1 of the best items about getting the bus in Spain is that buses serve almost just about every small city in Spain. Positive, there are some distant pieces without bus company, but most cities have great bus connections. Additionally, buses are frequently clean up and relaxed, and run on a affordable agenda.

Negatives of Touring by Bus in Spain

When buses are inexpensive in Spain, a single of the principal shortcomings of getting the bus is that it is a lot slower than substantial velocity trains, traveling, or even driving by auto. This is specifically aggravating on non-direct bus routes that have numerous stops. If time if of the essence, then definitely choose for the more highly-priced immediate buses with negligible stops.


Ferries aren’t the initial matter most men and women believe of when it comes to transportation in Spain.

That explained, all over 20 ferry businesses work in Spain. They function to and from:

  • the Canary Islands
  • the Balearic Islands of Ibiza, Formentera, Mallorca and Menorca (most depart from Barcelona, but some route by means of Dénia and Valencia.)
  • Spain to Morocco
  • the Uk, Italy and other international locations, together with North Africa and Morocco.
  • in between islands in Spain (for instance, from Fuerteventura to Lanzarote)
Torreveija La Mata Beach
Torreveija La Mata Seashore

We took the ferry from the extreme south of Spain in the town of Tarifa to the Moroccan city of Tangier, across the Gibraltar Strait. There are two corporations that run the route, FRS and Inter Transport.

The crossing is rather brief, at only about an hour and the ferries normally have foods and entertainment onboard.

Suggestion: If the water’s choppy, the crossing from Tarifa to Tangier by ferry can be rather nausea inducing.

You can also acquire a ferry immediately from Barcelona to possibly Tanger Med (on GNV ferries) or Nador (on Grimaldi Lines) . Ferry sailings from Barcelona to Tanger Med are operated by the ferry businesses GNV and Grimaldi Traces. Both of those crossings consider about 30 hrs.

Touring by Airplane in Spain

Spain is perfectly served by discounted and typical fare airlines, and traveling is usually the quickest (and even lowest priced) way of obtaining all around the country. Spain is a large state (the second biggest in Western Europe), so it can get a while to get from the north down to south or even from east to west.

Walking into the Seville airport
Ola, Seville. Going for walks into the Seville airport

It’s a whopping 529.5 kilometers (321 miles) from the main facilities of Madrid to Seville, for instance. The journey normally takes about two and a fifty percent several hours by prepare, 5 and a half hrs by vehicle, and only a person hour by aircraft.

If time permits, numerous travelers choose to gradual down and see the Spanish countryside by teach, bus, or motor vehicle.

Spain’s key airways are Iberia, Iberia Express, Vueling, Air Europa, Wamos Air, and Degree. Loads of other airways functioning in Spain, like Ryanair, EasyJet and Lufthansa.

Heads up! Guidelines banning short haul flights in Spain are underneath consideration in 2022, to help shrink the region’s carbon output. It’s a critical risk, as France set a regulation in outcome that banned small-haul domestic flights on routes where by train journeys of two and a fifty percent hours or less existed as an different.


Though most people today think of main treks like the renowned El Camino de Santiago, it is probable to get close to most metropolitan areas and towns just by going for walks.

Charles Kosman and the kids walking down a lane in Avila, Spain
Walking in Avila, Spain

So, when strolling may well not be feasible for very long distances amongst cities in Spain, it is a wonderful way to see a lot of of the sites in city.

Strolling is just one of our favourite approaches to see a new region, and wandering via the slim streets of the metropolis middle showed us the finest of Seville and the centro of Madrid. Strolling the winding city facilities is also a person of the matters we liked about Spain.

https://www.youtube.com/check out?v=ZrAGWXSpKiE

Taxis, Ubers and Other Ride Hailing Possibilities

To get about locally, taxi providers and Uber* (or area ride hailing solutions) are normally fantastic solutions in Spain. Though in metropolis rates are not negative, lengthy length costs can get fairly substantial so other techniques of transportation is advised.

*Uber is controlled in Spain and it does not run in each and every city, which include Valencia. It just returned to Barcelona in 2021 immediately after a two yr absence.

The Very best Techniques to Get All-around Spain

Regardless of whether you pick out trains and airplanes to buses or auto rentals, there is no denying Spain is a large, stunning state with a great deal to see and a lot to do. No issue which method of transportation you choose, Spain has a lot of alternatives for you and you simply cannot really go mistaken with any of them.

When setting up a tour of the place, shell out attention to not only your finances but also your timelines. Preserving a handful of pounds can charge you hrs that could be superior expended checking out a attractive location in Spain or chomping down on some scrumptious tapas.

Safe travels!

Next Post

Travel subscription plans from airlines and hotels are expanding

There are subscriptions for just about anything these times, like streaming solutions, pet toys, food strategies, even crime-fixing kits, and each and every calendar year there are millions a lot more folks ready to pay out for them. In accordance to an international survey by Zuora Subscribed Institute, 78 percent […]