Spain is the ideal location if you are planning holidays for disabled travellers. Many of it’s top tourist destinations have prioritised improving accessibility for tourists with mobility difficulties, making cities like Barcelona some of the easiest places for wheelchair users to visit. |
Here are five cultural centres in Spain ideal for holidays for disabled travellers.
Barcelona is the cultural capital of Spain. With great food, sunny beaches and a friendly population, it is a good destination for a short city break or as a base for exploring Catalonia.
The city is home to the architecture of Antoni Gaudi. Three of his most popular creations, the Parc Guell, La Pedrera and the Sagrada Familia offer adapted tours for wheelchair users so make sure to book in advance.
Barcelona is one of the easiest cities to navigate around as many of the city’s tourist attractions are wheelchair accessible, as well as three of its beaches. Both locals and tourists soak up afternoon rays on the beach before heading back into town for tapas.
Valencia is a vibrant, historical centre with a beautiful old town at its heart. Don’t miss the stunning cathedral or the striking, modern ‘City of Arts and Sciences’ – one of the twelve treasures of Spain. Do be aware that the old town has narrow pavements in some areas making navigation difficult occasionally.
Paella is a speciality in Valencia and can be enjoyed in one of the city’s many accessible restaurants.
Malaga, in Southern Spain, is the birthplace of Pablo Picasso. Sitting by the sea, the town is famous for its marine-based cuisine including mackerel, anchovies and mullet.
The area boasts over 300 days of sunshine a year, so it is the perfect destination for a relaxing beach holiday. However, Malaga has more to offer than sandy shores. The five largest art galleries in Malaga, including the famous Pompidou Centre and the unmissable Picasso Museum, are all accessible.
The city is very flat and has a long seafront promenade offering views across the Mediterranean, ideal for wheelchairs. For a little shade, head to the botanical gardens and enjoy one of the many specially-designed routes.
Tenerife is known for its natural beauty, combining beaches with the tropics, fragrant pine forests with the desert. The island is proud to contain one of the two beaches in Spain that provides an adapted bathroom service year-round, making the destination ideal for holidays for disabled sunseekers. There is a team of specialist lifeguards on duty at the beach who are trained in aiding disabled swimmers.
To experience some of the island’s fun-loving atmosphere, spend an evening exploring the smooth walkways of the Playa de Los Cristianos.
Mallorca’s pristine beaches are iconic; they are also often equipped for disabled visitors. Palma beach is great for both relaxing in the sun and trying out adapted water activities.
To learn more about the natural environment of the island, head to the Palma Aquarium or the Natural Park of Albufera – both are accessible for those with mobility difficulties.
Spain is well-prepared for wheelchair-using visitors. Many of these cities have made providing inclusive access to their museums, hotels and beaches a priority so access will improve even more in the years to come.
Philip Scott is the owner and founder of Can be Done, a fully licensed UK tour operator specialising in worldwide holidays for disabled individuals and groups. With over 31 years’ experience organising long and short breaks for disabled travellers, Philip has built a reputation for helping his clients select hotels and accommodation that offer high standards of accessibility, to ensure that those with special needs can experience truly relaxing and carefree holidays.
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