Spanish culture: A lively guide to traditions, customs & facts

Spain is simply irresistible. There’s a reason why so many people from all over the world chose it to spend their holidays, or to settle permanently — just like myself.

From the intense, sunny Andalusia to the majestic peaks of the Pyrenees, without forgetting dreamy islands like the Balearic and the Canary, Spain's geographical embrace is much more than just a setting; for centuries, it's been a crucible of cultures, a meeting point of civilizations.

Picture this: a land where the echoes of flamenco resonate through cobblestone streets, where the aroma of paella and tapas tantalizes the senses, where miles of beautiful beaches invite you to a siesta and where centuries-old cathedrals stand as silent witnesses to the flow of time.

But Spain's allure isn't just in its picturesque landscapes or its iconic landmarks; it's in the fusion of influences that have shaped its identity.

Nestled at the crossroads of Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, Spain has been a melting pot of ideas, traditions, and customs for millennia.

So, whether you're a seasoned aficionado of Spanish culture or a curious Spanish learner, follow us on a viaje through the heart and soul of España, where every moment and fiesta is infused with passion, flavor, and a touch of magic. ¡Vámos!

Miles of beautiful beaches in Spain.

Table of contents

The melting pot of Spanish culture

At the crossroads of civilizations, Spain's cultural journey has been shaped by a wealth of peoples, from the Phoenicians and Romans to the Moors and beyond.

The Phoenicians were among the first to leave their mark on the Iberian Peninsula, establishing trading colonies along the coast and introducing innovations in agriculture and craftsmanship. Their legacy laid the groundwork for subsequent civilizations to flourish in this fertile land.

With the arrival of the Roman Empire, Spain became Hispania, a province with urban centers, aqueducts, and roads that connected the peninsula to the far reaches of the empire. The Roman Empire had a heavy influence on every aspect of life, from language and law to architecture and religion. A presence that is still very visible nowadays!

Yet, perhaps the most transformative period in Spain's history came with the arrival of Moorish rule in the 8th century. The Moors, a Muslim people hailing from North Africa, brought with them a treasure trove of art, science, and architecture, transforming cities like Córdoba and Granada into thriving centers of learning and innovation.

The legacy of Moorish Spain is evident in the intricate designs of its mosques, the geometric patterns adorning its palaces — the most famous being La Alhambra, — the melodic strains of its music, the gastronomy and the physique of many Spaniards.

Spain still owns two enclaves on the African continent: Ceuta and Melilla.

However, the Reconquista, a centuries-long campaign to reclaim the Iberian Peninsula from Moorish rule, heralded a new chapter in Spanish history. Led by Christian kingdoms such as Castile and Aragon, the Reconquista culminated in the eventual unification of Spain under Catholic rule in 1492.

This period of consolidation paved the way for Spain's Golden Age, a time of unparalleled cultural flourishing and exploration. From the literary genius of Cervantes to the artistic brilliance of Velázquez, Spanish culture in Spain reached new heights during this period, leaving an enduring legacy that continues to captivate people from all over the world.

The heartbeat of Spanish food

What’s so special about Spanish culture? Sure, it’s their unique way of enjoying life and living in the moment. And that involves tapas, paella, sangría, churros and all the classics you know.

Yes, cuisine is more than important. It’s a fundamental part of it.

And Spanish cuisine goes way beyond its iconic dishes. Keep reading to discover mouth-watering specialities. ¡Qué hambre!

Famous Spanish gastronomic delights


Paella is without a doubt the most iconic Spanish dish. So much, in fact, that it even has a WhatsApp emoji.

While you might have eaten seafood paella during your holidays on the Spanish coast, the original recipe is actually very different.

Born in Valencia, it’s a meat-based dish with rabbit or chicken and snails — Basically what was cheap and readily available back in the day!

Paella is one of the best-known dishes in Spanish cuisine.


Those delightful small plates have a cool history that traces back to the taverns of Spain.

According to the legend, tapas (tapas means lids, tapar means to cover) originated from a simple practice of covering glasses of wine with slices of bread or cheese to prevent insects from getting in.

Over time, this evolved into a culinary tradition where small bites of food were served alongside drinks, encouraging socializing.

Today, tapas are an integral part of Spanish gastronomy, offering a diverse array of dishes ranging from classic favorites like patatas bravas and croquetas to innovative creations that showcase the creativity of Spanish chefs.

Tortilla de patatas

One piece of advice if you want to make friends while in Spain: Never tell a Spaniard your mom’s tortilla is better than theirs.

This deceptively simple omelette is made with potato and egg and is supposed to be runny, not dry!

And here's the million-dollar question: Do you like your tortilla with onions or without? As far as I’m concerned, 100% onions!

Jamón ibérico

Another "made in Spain" delicacy is Ibérico Ham, with its most exquisite variety: Pata negra, according to many the best ham in the world. I won’t disagree.

Made from the meat of free-range Iberian pigs that roam oak forests (dehesas) in Spain, Pata Negra is distinguished by its marbled texture, rich flavor, and melt-in-your-mouth consistency. The name "Pata Negra" translates to "black hoof," referring to the distinctive black hooves of the Iberian pigs.

By the way, ham is the most prized possession for Spaniards living abroad. If you're visiting a Spanish friend who lives outside of Spain, and you don't bring ham, you’ll have to sleep on the couch.


Gazpacho is a cold soup made with tomato, bread, cucumber, onion, garlic, green pepper, and olive oil.

It's one of the most popular summer dishes, sometimes savored with diced pepper and onions…. And ice cubes!

Gazpacho is a cold soup made with tomato, bread, cucumber, onion, garlic, green pepper, and olive oil.


Sangria, the quintessential Spanish beverage, is a refreshing and vibrant blend of wine, fruit, and spices that reminds of leisurely summer days in the sun.

Its lighter version, Tinto de verano (summer wine), is mixed with soda.

Sip on other drinks in Spanish here.


Churros are believed to have been inspired by a traditional Spanish pastry known as "porras." Crisp on the outside and soft on the inside, churros are typically served piping hot, making them the perfect accompaniment to a cup of rich, velvety chocolate for dipping.

Whether enjoyed as a sweet breakfast treat or as a late-night snack, it’s always churro time. My favorites are covered with dark chocolate…

We couldn’t cover all of Spanish food in one article, so indulge in all things Spanish food and cuisine in this dedicated article.

Regional specialties

As any self-respecting Mediterranean country, Spain boasts a delicious array of regional specialities, deeply rooted in Spanish culture and traditions.

If you’re hungry, you might want to grab a bite before discovering these regional treats! (I had to stop and eat lunch, too mouth-watering…)


Pinchos, also known as pintxos in the Basque Country, are a beloved culinary tradition in Spain that involves small bites of food served on skewers or toothpicks.

Originating from the Basque region, pinchos are typically enjoyed as a snack or appetizer, often accompanied by a glass of wine or beer.

These bite-sized delights come in a variety of flavors and combinations, ranging from simple combinations like olives and cheese to more elaborate creations featuring seafood, meats, and vegetables.

It’s common to keep track of the number of pinchos you’ve eaten by saving the sticks or toothpicks used to skewer the pinchos. At the end of the meal, the server or bartender will count the sticks to determine the total bill!

Pintxos are small bites of food served on skewers or toothpicks.

Cocido Madrileño

Best enjoyed in winter, Cocido Madrileño is a hearty and comforting stew originating from the capital city of Madrid.

Made with a variety of meats such as beef, pork, chorizo, and morcilla (blood sausage), along with vegetables like chickpeas, potatoes, and carrots, Cocido Madrileño is simmered slowly to develop rich flavors and tender textures.


Salmorejo is a refreshing and velvety chilled soup that originates from the southern region of Andalusia, particularly the city of Córdoba.

Similar to gazpacho but thicker in consistency, Salmorejo is made from ripe tomatoes, bread, garlic, olive oil, and sherry vinegar, all blended together until smooth and creamy.

It is typically garnished with hard-boiled eggs and jamón ibérico.

Fabada Asturiana

Fabada Asturiana is a hearty and flavorful bean stew from the mountainous region of Asturias in northern Spain.

Made with large white beans known as fabes, along with chorizo, morcilla (blood sausage), and pork belly, Fabada Asturiana is simmered slowly to allow the flavors to meld together and the beans to become tender, just like the French cassoulet.


This dish with such a cool name is a traditional staple food from the Canary Islands, made from roasted and ground cereals such as wheat, barley, or corn.

Gofio has been consumed by the indigenous Guanche people of the Canary Islands for centuries and remains an important part of Canarian cuisine today.

It’s often savored as a porridge with raw onions, or used as a thickening agent in soups and stews.

Pa amb tomàquet

Pa amb tomàquet, also known as "pan con tomate" or "bread with tomato," is a simple yet iconic Catalan dish that exemplifies the beauty of Spanish cuisine in its simplicity and reliance on quality ingredients.

It’s usually enjoyed as a traditional breakfast, snack, or accompaniment to meals, although it can be a meal of its own together with charcuterie and cheese.

To prepare pa amb tomàquet, a slice of rustic bread, such as country-style (pa de pagès o pa de vidre), is toasted until golden. A ripe tomato is then cut in half and rubbed over the surface of the bread. Many people also rub a clove of garlic. The bread is then drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, and often salt.

Crema Catalana

Let’s remain in my beloved Catalonia with our next delicacy! Spain is not notoriously famous for its desserts, but there’s one you shouldn’t miss: Crema Catalana.

Often compared to crème brûlée, Crema Catalana is in fact quite different in texture and taste. It features a light, creamy custard base flavored with lemon zest and cinnamon, which is then topped with a layer of caramelized sugar.


Let’s end this section on a sweet note! Turrón is a traditional confection that holds a special place in the hearts of Spaniards, especially during the holiday season.

Originating from the town of Jijona in the Valencia region, it’s made primarily from almonds, honey, sugar, and egg whites, although there are various regional variations and modern interpretations.

The two main types of turrón are "turrón duro" (hard turrón) and "turrón blando" (soft turrón). Turrón duro has a firm and crunchy texture, while turrón blando is softer and more nougat-like in consistency.

During the Christmas season, turrón is a popular gift and a staple dessert at holiday gatherings and celebrations throughout Spain. ¡Feliz Navidad!

During the Christmas season, turrón is a popular gift and a staple dessert at holiday gatherings and celebrations throughout Spain.

And if you plan to visit Spain and try all the specialities above and many more — ¡Qué buena idea!, make sure to learn how to order food at a Spanish restaurant!

Exploring the culture behind Spanish mealtimes

In Spain, mealtimes dictate the pace of the day, resulting in a unique lifestyle you won’t find anywhere else.

In fact, many people are surprised, sometimes even shocked, when they visit Spain for the first time. I’ve been living in Spain for 15 years, and vacationing in Spain my entire life, and it’s true: Spaniards are crazy!

At first, it looks like they never sleep. And yet, they still have the energy to socialize and party. Every day.

So, what’s their secret?


A hallmark of Spanish culture, the siesta is a short afternoon nap that serves as a welcome respite from the midday heat and a chance to recharge before the evening ahead.

Originating from the agricultural practices of rural communities, the siesta tradition has become ingrained in Spanish society, with many businesses and shops closing for a few hours in the early afternoon to allow people to rest and relax.

While the siesta is more prevalent in southern regions like Andalusia and Extremadura due to the hot afternoon temperatures, its popularity varies across different parts of Spain.

(Very) late dinners

Spaniards are known for their insane meal times, with dinner often served later in the evening compared to other cultures.

It's not uncommon for Spaniards to sit down for dinner as late as 9 or 10 pm, sometimes later during the weekend, allowing ample time for socializing with friends and family after the workday is done.

And you might wonder how they can wait that late without starving to death? Well, lunchtime is traditionally between 2 and 4pm. They also eat a sandwich around 11am, and children have their “merienda” (afternoon snack) after school.


Whether it's gathering around a table for a shared meal with loved ones or meeting friends for tapas and drinks at a local bar, socializing revolves around the enjoyment of good food and lively conversation.

Spaniards value the art of lingering over a meal, savoring each bite, and relishing the company of those around them. Most restaurants and bars have an outdoor terrace, always packed at any time of the day.

Different styles of music in Spanish culture

Music is a key part of any party. And, of course, the champion country of fiesta offers a whole lineup of musical styles waiting to be discovered.

You might have heard of Andalusian flamenco, but it’s far from being the only style of music and dance.

Head up north to the Basque Country, and you'll find yourself tapping your toes to the funky beats of txalaparta and trikitixa. And that's just the beginning!

Catalonia's got its sardanas, Galicia's got its bagpipes – it's like a musical road trip through Spain's diverse regions.

So, get ready to groove to the rhythm of Spanish music. ¡Olé!


Flamenco is a passionate, intense and expressive art form that combines singing (cante), guitar playing (toque), dance (baile), and handclaps (palmas).

Originating from the Andalusian region of Spain, flamenco is deeply rooted in the cultural traditions of the Romani, Moorish, and Spanish communities. Its origins date back to the 18th century, emerging from the fusion of various musical and dance styles brought by these diverse cultural influences.

You might have heard of “sevillanas”, which is one of the Flamenco dances.

Flamenco dancers try to express their deepest emotions by using body movements and facial expressions.

Rumba Catalana

Rumba Catalana is a lively and rhythmic musical style that originated in Catalonia. Yep, where they eat pa amb tomàquet and cremal catalana!

It blends elements of traditional flamenco with Afro-Cuban rhythms, resulting in a vibrant and upbeat sound.

Rumba Catalana became popular in the 1950s and 1960s, especially in Barcelona, where it was embraced by the city's vibrant Romani community.


Let’s stay in Catalonia with our next traditional music style, which goes hand in hand with a very peculiar dance.

Originating from the 19th century, Sardana is performed in a circle, with dancers holding hands and moving gracefully to the music while counting the steps in their heads. Trust me, it’s a lot harder than it looks!

Sardana is a strong symbol of Catalan identity and unity, just like Castellers — If you’ve never heard of this, check it out, it’s pretty spectacular!


Habaneras are a style of music that originated in Cuba during the 19th century, influenced by African rhythms and Spanish melodies.

The music was brought to Spain by sailors and traders and quickly gained popularity, especially in coastal regions like Catalonia and Valencia.

Habaneras are characterized by their catchy melodies, syncopated rhythms, and themes of love, longing, and nostalgia.

Habaneras are closely associated with seaside towns and festivals, where they are performed by choirs or small ensembles known as habaneras groups. We have them in my town, Sitges, every summer!

Spanish classical guitar

Spanish classical guitar refers to a style of guitar playing that originated in Spain and is characterized by its use of nylon strings and intricate fingerpicking techniques.

It’s so complex that it sounds like several guitarists are playing, when it’s only one!

It has its roots in ancient Moorish and Spanish folk traditions, with the modern classical guitar repertoire dating back to the Renaissance and Baroque periods.

Spanish classical guitar gained widespread popularity in the 19th century, thanks to virtuoso performers such as Francisco Tárrega and Andrés Segovia. Here’s my favorite!


Pasodoble is a lively Spanish dance that originated in the 19th century and is often performed during bullfights.

Its name translates to "double step" in Spanish, referring to the quick and rhythmic footwork of the dancers.

Pasodoble music is characterized by its strong, march-like beat, with melodies inspired by traditional Spanish folk music and military marches.

Basque Trikitixa

Trikitixa is a traditional Basque music genre that features the accordion (trikitixa) and tambourine (pandero) as its main instruments.

Trikitixa music is lively and upbeat, often played at festivals, dances, and celebrations. Its origins can be traced back to the 19th century, when accordions were introduced to the region.

Latin pop

Latin pop is a genre of popular music that blends Latin American rhythms with pop music elements.

It originated in the late 20th century and gained widespread popularity across Latin America, Spain, and other Spanish-speaking countries.

Latin pop music often features catchy melodies, upbeat rhythms, and lyrics in Spanish or a combination of Spanish and English. Do Enrique Iglesias, Luis Fonsi, Shakira or Daddy Yankee ring a bell?

Cult summer songs

In Europe, there’s no summer party without a Spanish one-hit wonder.

For us, Europeans, modern Spanish music is a synonym for summer vacation. I didn’t say it’s good music. I just said it’s festive. With an official dance included, por supuesto.

So, just for you, here are two of the most famous Spanish summer songs. You’ll thank me later.

La Macarena, Los del Río

Aserejé, Las Ketchup

Try to sing this one, even Spaniards can’t.

Spanish festivals, celebrations and traditional clothing

As seen in our articles on Festivals, Spain is the world-wide champion of festivities. Spaniards like it loud, colorful, crowded and intense. Whatever the season, there’s always a good reason to celebrate.

Below a just a few of the most renowned Spanish festivals.

San Fermín - Pamplona

The festival of San Fermín is famous for its heart-pounding running of the bulls and week-long festivities honoring Saint Fermín.

Bull runners typically wear a white shirt, a red bandana (pañuelo) and a red sash (faja).

Semana Santa - Whole country, especially Andalusia

Semana Santa is a solemn religious observance, marked by processions, music, and elaborate floats depicting scenes from the Passion of Christ.

For Catholics, it's a time of reverence and reflection, observed with great intensity across the country.

Feria de Abril - Sevilla

April fair is an annual festival held in Seville, Andalusia.

Taking place two weeks after Easter, the fair features colorful tents (casetas) set up along the banks of the Guadalquivir River, where locals and visitors gather to dance, socialize, and indulge in Andalusian cuisine and drinks.

Women don their best flamenco dresses (trajes de flamenca), adorned with ruffles, polka dots, and vibrant colors, while men opt for traditional Spanish attire like the short jackets and wide-brimmed hats of the traje corto.

Las Fallas - Valencia

Prepare for an explosion of sound and color at Las Fallas, a lively festival in Valencia honoring Saint Joseph.

Throughout the city streets, elaborate papier-mâché sculptures, or "fallas," poke fun at political figures and popular culture.

The grand finale, "La Cremà," sees the fallas set ablaze, symbolizing the renewal of life and the arrival of spring.

La Tomatina - Buñol

Spain's penchant for unique — that’s an understatement — festivals shines brightly at La Tomatina, where thousands gather for a massive tomato fight.

Since its inception in 1945, this quirky tradition has attracted thrill-seekers from around the globe to hurl ripe tomatoes at each other in a messy spectacle of fun.

La Tomatina festival is where thousands gather for a massive tomato fight.

Festival tips

To make the most of your experience, consider the following tips:

1. Arrive early

Many Spanish festivals attract large crowds, so arriving early will give you the chance to secure a good spot for viewing parades, fireworks, performances, or other festivities.

2. Embrace the culture

Take the opportunity to learn about the history and traditions behind the festival you're attending. Understanding the cultural significance of the event will enhance your appreciation and enjoyment.

3. Sample local cuisine

Spanish festivals often feature a variety of traditional foods and drinks, so be sure to indulge in the local cuisine. Whether it's paella at Las Fallas in Valencia or pintxos at San Fermín in Pamplona, savoring regional delicacies is a key part of the experience.

4. Join the fiesta

Don't be afraid to get involved in the festivities and let loose! Spaniards are usually really chill and rarely judgmental. Whether it's dancing to live music, participating in parades, or cheering on performers, embracing the celebratory spirit of the festival will make for a memorable experience.

5. Respect local Spanish customs

Be mindful of local Spanish customs and traditions, and show respect for the cultural heritage of the festival. This includes following any guidelines or rules set by organizers, as well as being courteous to fellow attendees.

6. Stay safe

Yes, it’s all about the fun, but use common sense! Spain is not a dangerous country, but there are thieves in tourist places. So keep an eye on your belongings and avoid wearing a backpack.

And it gets hot in summer, so make sure to stay hydrated and wear sunblock!

7. Book and plan ahead

Research the festival schedule in advance and plan your itinerary accordingly. Be sure to book well ahead of time, as accommodations fill up quickly.

Art and architecture of Spain

From world-famous to architectural masterpieces, Spain is an endless source of inspiration for artists and a real powerhouse of creation.

And they excel at artfully blending the old and the new.

It would take a lifetime to cover everything, but here are a few highlights of the art and architecture scene in Spain.

Spanish artists such as El Greco, Picasso, Mirò and Dalí.

The legacy of Spanish masters: From El Greco to Picasso

Spain boasts a legacy of artistic excellence, with renowned masters who have shaped the course of art history.

El Greco, a Greek-born painter who made Spain his home, left a lasting impression with his distinctive style characterized by elongated figures and vibrant colors. His works, such as "The Burial of the Count of Orgaz," showcase his mastery of light and emotion.

Moving forward, the 20th century witnessed the rise of Pablo Picasso, one of the most influential artists of all time. Picasso's groundbreaking innovations in Cubism revolutionized the art world, challenging traditional notions of representation and perspective. His iconic works, like "Guernica," serve as powerful indictments of war and injustice, transcending time and place to resonate with audiences worldwide.

Other famous Spanish painters include Mirò, Velásquez, Goya, de Zurbarán or the genius — and my personal favorite — Dalí.

As a result, Spain offers world-class museums like the Prado, Reina Sofía and Thyssen-Bornemisza in Madrid, the Guggenheim in Bilbao or the Picasso and Dalí museums in Catalonia.

Architectural wonders

Spain's architectural landscape is equally awe-inspiring, boasting a diverse array of styles and structures that span centuries of history.

The Alhambra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Granada, stands as a testament to the breathtaking beauty of Islamic architecture.

In Barcelona, Antoni Gaudí's visionary creations leave an indelible imprint on the cityscape, including pure marvels like La Sagrada Família, La Casa Batlló, La Pedrera and El Parc Güell. Here is a song to accompany you on your modernist journey through the Catalan capital, la ciutat del meu cor!

Antoni Gaudí's La Sagrada Familia.

Street art and contemporary expressions

Despite its rich legacy, Spain is far from living in the past. The country is also a hotbed of contemporary artistic expression, with vibrant street art scenes and avant-garde movements.

From the colorful murals of Madrid's Lavapiés neighborhood to the edgy urban art of Barcelona's El Raval, the streets serve as canvases for a new generation of artists to make their mark.

Contemporary Spanish artists continue to push boundaries and challenge conventions, exploring themes of identity, politics, and social justice through a variety of mediums. From installations to performance art, their work reflects the dynamic and diverse nature of modern Spanish society, inviting audiences to engage with pressing issues and explore new perspectives.

Official languages in Spain

As you’ve probably understood by now, Spain is a unique country. And it’s peculiarity also resides in its official languages.

Recognizing linguistic diversity

Indeed, Spain officially recognizes four languages alongside Spanish (Castilian): Aranese, Catalan, Galician and Basque (Euskara). Each language represents a distinct cultural identity and is spoken in specific regions of the country.

For example, in my region (Catalonia), the official language is Catalan.

Historical context and language policies

The historical context of Spain's linguistic diversity is deeply intertwined with its complex political and social history.

Following the Franco regime, which suppressed regional languages and imposed Spanish as the sole official language, Spain transitioned to a decentralized system of governance with the establishment of autonomous communities.

This shift granted regions greater autonomy over their cultural and linguistic affairs, leading to the official recognition and promotion of regional languages, and the development of an even stronger sense of regional identity.

Regional autonomy and cultural preservation

In regions such as Catalonia, Galicia, the Basque Country, and the Valencian Community, efforts to preserve and promote regional languages have been central to cultural identity and autonomy.

Regional governments have implemented language revitalization and preservation initiatives, including education programs, media production, and government services offered in regional languages.

These initiatives include, among others:

  • Bilingual education programs that offer instruction in both Spanish and regional languages.
  • Support for cultural organizations, publishers, and media outlets that produce content in regional languages.
  • Free, or accessible regional language courses and summer camps for children and adults.
  • Preservation of traditional cultural practices, such as folk music, dance, and literature, which are often closely tied to regional languages.
  • Collaboration between regional governments, linguistic experts, and community organizations to develop language policies and promote language awareness. Here is an example of a commercial to promote speaking in Catalan.

Hospitality in Spain

Spain is probably one of the warmest countries in Europe, and I’m not talking only about the weather.

It’s really not difficult to make friends and socialize in Spain. I often say Spaniards are social animals — no offense, they just have this constant need to be surrounded by their “pack”!

In fact, even if you don’t try, people will probably talk to you and teach you the true meaning of the word “bienvenidos”, whether it is when walking their dogs, in the stores, or even on public transport.

For introverts, it might be a bit much. But for a lot of people, it’s just lovely. So, what to do to blend in?


Whether it's a casual "Hola" or a more formal "Buenos días/tardes/noches," using the appropriate greeting shows respect and acknowledgment of cultural norms. “Hola” is widely accepted in most settings, and so is “”.

Additionally, be prepared for physical expressions of greeting, such as kisses on the cheek (dos besos) or handshakes.

Spaniards are not shy about physical contact, and it’s not rare for someone to pat you on the back or grab you by the shoulders, even at the first encounter.

You’ll find plenty of greetings in Spanish in our article!

Dining etiquette

Spanish meals are usually very casual. Sharing dishes, passing plates around the table, and engaging in lively conversation are all integral parts of the dining experience.

Embrace the tradition of ordering for the table or allowing your friend to select dishes; it demonstrates trust and respect for the culinary expertise of your new amigos.

Moreover, be sure to savor each bite, as meals in Spain are not just about nourishment but also about savoring the sensory delights of the cuisine and enjoying the company of those around you — often for several hours between el aperitivo and el café!

Social interactions

Spanish social interactions are characterized by warmth, passion, tolerance and genuine interest in others.

Engaging in meaningful conversations, actively listening, and sharing personal anecdotes are all essential aspects of socializing in Spain.

As in most countries, focus on building connections through shared interests, cultural exchange, and mutual respect. Enquire about their family, a pillar of the Spanish society.

If you’re visiting a region with another official language than Spanish, make sure to acknowledge that by learning a few common words in that language like “Hello” and “Thank you”. Locals will really appreciate it!

One last piece of advice: Be careful when talking about soccer (fútbol). Spaniards take their team to heart, especially the Barça and Real Madrid!

As you should have understood after reading this article, at the heart of Spanish culture and traditions lies a profound appreciation for socializing.

Whether exchanging greetings with strangers on the street, indulging in a leisurely meal with friends and family, or going locos a local fiesta, every interaction exudes warmth, hospitality, and a genuine curiosity for others.

The culture of Spain is a mosaic of diversity, where ancient traditions blend seamlessly with contemporanean art.

So, the next time you find yourself wandering the streets of Barcelona, getting lost in the labyrinthine alleys of Granada, or sunbathing on a picture-perfect playa, remember to feel the true essence of Spain — a nation that is loud, intense, passionate, generous, and that celebrates the magical fact of being alive every single day.

If you want learn more about Spanish language and culture, be sure to check out our fun and informative Spanish blog here.

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