Why Spain is great for winter sun

Escaping to sunnier climates during winter is a great way to beat the winter blues. If you are thinking of booking a winter sun break between October to February, I would recommend that you consider heading to Spain. 

Spain has an enviable summer climate and is one of the best countries in Europe to visit for winter sun. While some areas of Spain will see a drop in the number of visitors during winter and certain beachside resorts are no longer open to tourists, there are many great locations you can visit. To get the most of Spain’s winter sunshine it’s wise to go South as Northern Spain experiences a lot of rain and lower temperatures.   

We’ve previously gone through the top 5 destinations in Spain for winter sun, now let’s take a look at why Spain is great for winter sun and what the country can offer during the winter months. 

Winter sun in Spain

What does Spain offer during winter?

Late sunset 

There might not be as many hours of sunshine in Spain during winter compared to summer. However, winter in Southern Spain still offers a late sunset compared to the UK and Northern Europe. In Malaga for example you can expect 10 hours of sunshine in mid-November with the sun rising around 8am and setting around 6pm.  

Warm weather 

Temperatures during December along the Costa Almeria, Costa Tropical and Costa del Sol average at around 16-18°c in winter. With the Canary Islands averaging around 20°c. This is a great temperature in comparison to December in London or Paris which are usually 6-8°c. 

Great weather in Spain during winter

Low rainfall 

It does rain in Spain, during summer and winter but more so in the North, through mountainous regions and on the Atlantic coast. Extreme weather conditions are something we are unfortunately seeing throughout the World. However, Almeria records on average only 26 days of rain per year, Malaga only 43 days and Seville 52 days. 

Winter fiestas 

There are fiestas, festivals and parties all over Spain all year round and winter is no exception. These are some of the biggest fiestas to enjoy in the Spanish winter months. 


  • Benidorm Festival 
  • San Andres Festival in Tenerife 
  • International Sherry Week 
  • Seville Film Festival 
  • Granada Jazz Festival 


  • Constitution Day national holiday 
  • Immaculate Conception national holiday and religious celebration 
  • Christmas  

*RELATED article – For more details about how Christmas is celebrated in Spain read – Christmas in Spain 


  • New Year’s Eve 
  • Three Kings Day  


  • Moors & Christians celebration in Valencia 
  • Carnival in Gran Canaria, Tenerife & Cadiz 

Winter sports 

The southernmost ski resort in Spain is the Sierra Nevada. Within easy reach of both Granada and Malaga you can expect great conditions for skiing and snowboarding from late November to March. For more info about skiing in Spain check out this website 

Winter sun in Spain

Which are the best areas to visit in Spain during winter? 

The Costas and Islands on the East coast of Spain still have some sunny days during winter but the highest temperatures are found in Andalusia and the Canary Islands. While a winter break in Barcelona or Mallorca will find you wrapped in coats and scarves with the sun on your face, if you visit Seville you will most likely only need a thin jumper or jacket. Better still if you go to Tenerife you will be able to take a stroll on the beach in shorts and flip flops. 


  • Seville is an inland city break with high temperatures and lots of city sights, bars and restaurants to explore. 
  • Marbella offers lovely beachside and marina areas that are quieter but still open during the winter months. 
  • Almeria experiences the lowest rain fall in all of Spain, has a gastronomic city centre and great Costa Almeria beaches. 
  • Granada is surrounded by mountains that are perfect for skiing and snowboarding and just an hour drive to the Costa Tropical. 
  • Malaga is a city full of Christmas spirit and within easy reach of amazing Costa del Sol beaches. 

Canary Islands

  • Tenerife has volcanic black beaches with all year-round fun in the south and natural parks to hike in the north. 
  • Lanzarote offers family friendly resorts and cute fishing villages. 
  • Gran Canaria is famous for its sand dunes and fun beach towns.
  • Fuerteventura is a surfing and windsurfing hotspot with some wonderful white sand beaches. 

Why Spain is great for winter sun

What should you pack for a winter sun break in Spain?

If you are heading to Spain during winter it’s wise to check the weather forecast as it will differ from region to region. If you decided to visit one of the above recommendations in Andalusia or the Canary Islands you will likely enjoy warm sunny afternoons and cool evenings with a chance of cloud or light rain.

It can be hard to pack for a trip where you expect changeable weather but rather then packing your whole wardrobe take a minute to think about the most suitable items of clothing. I suggest that you pack a selection of light layers that can be mix and matched to create different outfits. Shorts, flipflops and tops with short sleeves for during the day and trousers, long sleeves and closed toe shoes for in the evening. Always carry a jumper, cardigan or light jacket just in case it turns chilly. But don’t forget to pack the sunglasses, swimsuit and sunscreen.

*RELATED article: For more tips on how to pack light read – Tips for packing only hand luggage

I hope you found this guide to why Spain is great for winter sun helpful. If you have any travel questions for us please get in touch and if you have a favourite winter sun spot in Spain tell us all about it in the comments box below↓↓

Other Spain travel guides from Seeking the Spanish Sun you may like to read…

A great family holiday in Mojácar

A weekend in Malaga

A weekend in Seville

8 surprising sights to see in Spain

10 most beautiful beaches in Spain

Printable Spain holiday packing list

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