There are some fantastic driving routes in this land of big scenery, big horizons and big surprises – here’s our choice of Spain’s best drives.

Alt Empordà Track the coastline in northern Costa Brava as you take in Greek and Roman ruins at Empúries and Salvador Dalí’s former home outside the picturesque town of Cadaqués.

Cañón de Río Sil Gaze upon Galicia’s most arresting landscape along this dramatic canyon that is also home to one of the country’s foremost wine-producing regions.

The Cincó Villas Lose yourself in small-town Aragón on the 80km drive linking the historic “five towns,” from Tauste to Sos del Rey Católico.

El Escorial to Ávila The most scenic route out of Madrid province, an hour’s drive from Felipe II’s colossal monastery and over the hills to the historic walled city of Ávila.

Gipuzkoa Head inland from San Sebastián and immerse yourself in Basque culture at Tolosa’s lively carnival and historic Oñati, with its distinctive casas torres.

Inland from Calpe It’s the juxtaposition between hedonistic sun-and-sand and quiet, rural inland Valencia that marks this leisurely 55km excursion, from Calpe to Alcoy.

Puerto de las Palomas to Zahara de la Sierra One of the most dramatic descents in Andalucía starts from the “Pass of the Doves” and corkscrews dizzily downwards to the ancient Moorish village of Zahara, with spectacular views across the sierras.

Sierra de la Demanda Mountain monasteries, verdant valleys and bare upland vistas on the two-hour drive (LR113) from La Rioja to the Castilla y León heartland.

Through the Valle de Jerte Track the Río Jerte for 70km (N110 out of Plasencia towards Barco de Ávila) on one of the most picturesque drives in Spain – carpeted in cherry blossom every spring.

Vielha to Esterri d’Aneau Snowy peaks, thickly forested slopes and, above all, utter mountain stillness – this 42km drive over the Bonaigua Pass (2072m) is pure Pyrenees.

Essentials

Everything you need to know before you set off.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Spain features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Video: a 1 minute guide to Spain

Video: a 1 minute guide to Spain

From the Moorish marvels and flamenco heartland of Andalucía to Ibiza's bleached-sand beaches and hedonistic nightlife, Spain is a country you'll want to visit…

27 Jul 2017 • Colt St. George videocam Video
The 10 best summer festivals for escapism in 2017

The 10 best summer festivals for escapism in 2017

Festivals are a different beast in 2017. They used to be associated with drinking warm cider while watching crusty bands in your naffest clothes; now the best e…

07 Jun 2017 • David Hillier insert_drive_file Article
Why you should visit Palma in 2017

Why you should visit Palma in 2017

Forget package holidays: Palma is far more than just the gateway to Mallorca’s beach resorts. The Balearic capital is a dynamic city of stylish restaurants, c…

28 Feb 2017 • Helen Ochyra insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month