Cantabria: the perfect 4-day itinerary

July 1, 2021

Castro Urdiales

This travel guide helps you plan the perfect 4-day itinerary to discover all Cantabria has to offer. Cantabria is home to many hidden gems in northern Spain. Countless charming coastal towns and quaint mountain villages from east to west make Cantabria a must-visit destination. The region's capital city, Santander, is considered one of the most beautiful in Spain. If that wasn't enough, food from northern Spain is the Holy Grail of Spanish cuisine. Prepare to see some dishes that will leave you drooling. What's not to like?

Let's take a look at the best places to visit in Cantabria.

Cantabria Itinerary Day 1: San Vicente de la Barquera, Oyambre, Suances

A great place to start your trip around Cantabria is the coastal town of San Vicente de la Barquera. If I had to define this place shortly I'd describe it as the "all-in-one city". It's got everything: heritage, sea, gorgeous views and delicious food. The heritage that you can find in the old town is breath-taking you can't miss it!

san vicente de la barquera

san vicente de la barquera

To learn about the importance of Oyambre beach we have to go back to the 1920s when the first flight -the yellow bird- between the USA and Spain landed there quite by chance because the actual destination was Paris. Nowadays, Oyambre is one of the most famous beaches in Cantabria. 

In Suances, you must stop at Playa de Los Locos -literally, "crazy people beach"- with a Beach Boys vibe, the place is always packed with surfers. The peculiar name comes from the fact that on top of the cliff, where now you can find a castle, there used to be a mental hospital.

Cantabria Itinerary Day 2: Noja, Isla - Arnuero

Noja is a favorite summer destination among cantabros. You have a choice of two spectacular beaches Ris and Trengadin where you can practice your favorite summer sports. If you like hiking, I recommend walking along the coastal route that links both beaches.



seagull foot prints



Another nice walk is from Noja to the village of Isla. When the tide is high you have to walk by the road but when it's low you can reach Isla thgough the beach of Ris. Both walks are really nice. There, you can find a fabulous restaurant Astuy.

Where to eatAstuy is a great place for seafood and fish lovers with amazing sea views. I recommend ordering their specialty: lobster.

trengadin beach

astuy restaurant

isla arnuero - restaurante Astuy

isla arnuero


Cantabria Itinerary Day 3: Catro Urdiales

Two impressive buildings form the skyline of Castro Urdiales: the church of Santa Maria de la Asuncion looks so majestic that seems more like a cathedral and right next to it the castle-lighthouse. The walk along the sea promenade is lovely and if you wander the surrounding streets you can find many lively tapas bars.

Where to eat: Meson Marinero is all about fresh fish and sea food. The quality of their products is outstanding. 

castro urdiales

Cantabria Itinerary Day 4: Liérganes, Puente Viesgo

So far we've covered the main coastal towns in Cantabria. The good thing about this northern region is that the mountains are just as beautiful as the coast. So to end our itinerary, let's visit two beautiful mountain villages you must see during your visit to the region of Cantabria.

Liérganes is part of the pueblos más bonitos de España list (most beautiful villages in Spain). It's got the charm of mountain villages with houses made of stone and plenty of flowers hanging from their balconies. Be sure to visit the Roman bridge and take a photo with the statue of the Hombre Pez "fish man". Intrigued by the name? Read the story here



In Puente Viesgo you can find an amazing health resort. The spa is the main attraction together with the caves and caverns where you can see 40,000 year-old paintings.  

puente viesgo

puente viesgo

Where to eat: Posada Rincon del Pas is a quaint bed and breakfast that serves delicious homemade food with unbeatable prices.

These are just some examples of beautiful places in Cantabria, but there's much more worth your attention such as the impressive city of Santander and world-famous architect Antoni Gaudi's Capricho in Comillas. Don't leave without checking out these blog posts to add more places to your itinerary!


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cantabria itinerary


  1. Your photos are gorgeous. I’d love to visit. I need to bookmark this post. Thank you for sharing. Have a wonderful day.

  2. It's such a beautiful place, hope to go there soon!


  3. I can’t wait to do international travel again Cristina! Keeping my fingers crossed it is soon but in the meantime, I am living vicariously through you and your pictures! Cantabria looks amazing and Noja - just wow! I hope you are doing well and happy Saturday!

    Maureen |


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