Travel is an amazingly freeing thing to be able to do. The act of allowing your normal routine to be interrupted so that you are able to envelope yourself into a new culture is amazing. As fun as I can be however, you do not want to be the traveler that sticks out like a sore thumb as the traditional tourist. You want to attempt to blend in as much as possible and to blend in when in Spain requires a bit of knowhow.
Stick to Trains
Traveling to a new place is exciting and you may think that just because you rent a car you will have more freedom to see more. Where this is the case in many travel destinations throughout the world, it is not the case in Spain. The act of getting car to make travel easier is not such a good idea in Spain because the directions that you will likely be given by locals will not translate very well. Each country seems to have a specific way of giving directions either by landmark of street name, but many travelers have become horribly lost quickly when attempting to navigate the roads to find their must see attractions. The solution is to stick to the trains.
Like many tourist cities, Spain is very tourist friendly as long as you stick to the public transportation. The train system is very reliable and utilized by many people both tourist and local. The ease of travel comes with the ability to get close, if not right at, most of your desired locations. You need not worry about getting lost because the system is interconnected and trains are a fantastic way to see the country without zipping through the heavily crowded streets where you will not be able to just sit back and enjoy the view.
Reset Your Eating Schedule
In many countries throughout the world the notion of rising early in order to take full advantage of the day is normal. They eat breakfast very early in the morning, are hungry again about mid-day, and eat their final meal just before the sun sets. If you are going to be traveling to Spain, you are going to have to adjust your eating schedule to the locals if you are to enjoy your Spanish experience to its maximum.
The Spanish people enjoy life a little differently than much of the rest of the world. They do not rise early, therefore lunch times are often at 2 pm or later. The dinner schedule is also late, far after the sun goes down at around 10 pm. If you stick to your standard eating schedule, you will likely be dining in stranded eating places and having your meals with the help within that establishment. The point of travel is to change things up a bit in your life, so if you are too strict to change something as simple as your eating schedule, you will not be fully enveloped into the culture.
Go for Tapas, But Watch Prices
The draw to many of the restaurants throughout the area is the ability to have many different small dishes at different locations and truly enjoying the Tapas experience. There is however one thing you are going to want to think about before you embark on your tapas filled food adventure and that is the price of the items.
Prices for tapas dishes are different than the standard dishes offered. The difference primarily difference is that tapas dishes are approximately in price ranges between 1 and 3. If the prices are a bit higher say 4 to 5, then you are likely ordering a full meal which can bring your tapas adventure down by becoming too full too quickly. Make sure that you know the distinction in prices when traveling to Spain.
The Toilet Paper Rule
It may seem in bad taste to discuss the act of handling your personal business, but there will come a time where you will not be at your hotel and you will need to find the facilities somewhere. In most instances and in most countries this is no problem because the staff generally makes sure that the area is fully stocked with Toilet Paper. This is sadly not the case in Spain.
For some strange reason, the act of stocking adequate toilet paper is lost on Spain as a whole. They simply do not do it, so if you are going to be using the facilities at any time on your trip, and you will, you want to make sure that you keep a small container or tissue of some sort on your person to ensure that you can properly take care of business.