Even though summer in Spain is famous for its high temperatures, it is also a good time to play sports outside wherever you have chosen to travel. That being said, it’s important to choose the right time of day and place to get active to have the best experience. Because of that, we thought a few recommendations might come in handy.
The best places to play sports and get active in Madrid
The capital of Spain has become an excellent place for runners. It’s now hard to find a park or neighborhood that doesn’t have a community of runners. And a very special one has been formed in one of the most beautiful areas of the city: the Instarunners, a running group that meets every Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. in the Parque del Retiro and shares their activities on Instagram. So don’t be shy, get out, meet them and get running! It’s an excellent (and free) way to make new friends and to keep up with your healthy habits during your stay with us!
- Parque del Retiro (Plaza de la Independencia, 7)
- Parque Juan Carlos I (the roundabout Sar Don Juan de Borbon y Battermberg)
- Madrid Río (Bridge of Toledo)
The best places to play sports and get active in Barcelona
There are tons of opportunities to play sports and too cool off in the Mediterranean while you’re in Barcelona since the city is so close to the sea. What a treat! People play sports and are active on the majority of beaches in Barcelona. And recently it has become very fashionable to do yoga or Pilates on stand up paddle boards while floating on the water. The only hold up might be the price of participating in this activity if you don’t have a board of your own (somewhere in the range of €20). However, taking into consideration that each session lasts 90 minutes, we think the price is actually not too bad. If surf and SUP boards aren’t your thing, and you happen to be a seasoned swimmer, the Club Natació Barcelona offers 40 minute long swimming in the sea sessions, which are a great way to challenge yourself!
- Club Natació Barcelona (Passeig de Joan de Borbó, 93)
- Muscle Beach Barcelona (Villa Olímpica)
- Passeig de Mare Nostrum
The best places to play sports and get active in Granada
Granada is surrounded by nature and mountains; so hiking is a perfect activity if you’re learning Spanish in this city! The City Hall of Granada has created many routes through the city’s old town which are perfect for walking around and getting to know the city better. For example, the walk that goes through the Realejo Albaicin and the Alhambra is quite impressive. There are also plenty of walks to take outside of the city for exploring nature; the ones around Alpujarra or Lanjarón are a great place to start. The good thing about walking or hiking the city or countryside is that it is completely free. However, we do recommend downloading maps of the trails you’ll be taking before heading out into the wild.
- Alhambra, Realejo Albaicin Route
- Sacromonte, Jesus del Valle, Silla del Toro Route
- Circular Route through Lanjarón
- Alpujarra Hike
The best places to play sports and stay active in Malaga
In Malaga an open water swimming event called the Travesía del puerto is organized every summer. At the event, daring swimmers swim 1,000 meters in the open Mediterranean Sea. You can register for the event for a mere €2. That being said, the swim is harder than it looks, so participating in one of the preparatory sessions held in the city is recommended. You can also try one of the many sporting events that take place at the Malaga Fair, like hikers’ walks around the city or Zumba sessions.
- The Port of Malaga
- Gran Senda de Malaga (Great Path of Malaga) stops throughout the city
- Ciudad Jardín Sports Center (Plaza John F. Kennedy, 3)
The best places to play sports and stay active in Marbella
The city of Marbella organizes an interesting summer sports program every year at different sports venues and includes activities like swimming, paddle tennis, yoga, tai chi… and even therapeutic swimming lessons! However, activities are not free of charge. If you want to get active for free, running is always a great option. And since Marbella is at sea level you won’t find any big hills that become excruciating to climb in the summer! That being said, it is important to choose the time of day you go out for a run carefully.
- Marbella Boardwalk
- Paco Cantos Sports Center (Ave. Canovas del Castillo)
The best places to play sports and stay active in Salamanca
Salamanca is a great area for hiking. Mild temperatures and trails through beautiful natural settings (one that goes from La Alberca to the Batuecas for example) keep hikers motivated to keep trekking. Salamanca is also a great place for activities like fishing. You can find fishermen fishing both passionately and tranquilly in this area. If fishing sounds like fun, remember, you can throw in your line and hooks… but always remember to respect your catch!
- Alberca, Batuecas Route
- Camino de los Prodigios (Batuecas)
- Alba de Tormes Fishing Reserve
The best places to play sports and stay active in Seville
Seville has a reputation for being a hot city, so a lot of people think their choices for getting active are limited there. But nothing could be further from the truth! Seville is a great place to hop on a bike (there are several great routes for biking enthusiasts) and there are also some excellent options for runners. Among them is the interesting Guadalquivir River night race which takes place along Paseo de las Delicias in late summer.
- Via de la Sierra Norte Route
- Corredor verde Metropolitano
- Paseo de las Delicias
The best places to play sports and stay active in Valencia
If you think of Valencia we’re sure the beach comes to mind. And people in this city take full advantage, filling city beaches playing sports and getting active. You can play beach volleyball and soccer for free on Malvarrosa Beach, take beach badminton, yoga, Zumba and Body Bump classes or even try an intensive sailing course. Of course you participate in some of the last activities on the list through sports clubs, which require payment. But we think learning to sail for €18 is a great deal!
- Playa de la Malvarrosa
- Municipal Sailing School (Real Juan Carlos I Marina)
Of course it’s okay to come to Spain to rest, to lie in a hammock or in the sand, to sit on a terrace and have a glass of sangria. But getting active and playing sports while you study Spanish is a great way to immerse yourself in Spain and the community that surrounds you!
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