This is going to be a very long page since a lot happened during this trip.

After one month of stress and studying non-stop for the PAU exams, we finally finished them and my friends from Secondary school and I had bought plane tickets to Santander for 5 days and rented an apartment in the city. We are four: Clara, Alicia, Elena and me. We hadn’t planned anything for sure, so we went there as kind of an adventure. We didn’t have a car or anything so it was kind of a challenge to organize what to do.

15th June 2021

Today is the day. I have wanted to go back to Santander for a while now. I don’t know why, but I feel a special connection with the north of Spain (mainly Cantabria and Asturias). I woke up at 7:30 and met Clara and Alicia at Alicia’s house so her mother could take us to the airport. There we met with Elena and began our journey. The flight was pretty short and everything went well. We didn’t sit together and Alicia spent the entire flight talking to the woman next to her, who happened to live in Santander and helped us find our way to the apartment. Right after we arrived, we did some grocery shopping and Clara cooked some hamburgers for lunch. Then we relaxed for a bit and spent the rest of the evening wandering around the city looking for tourism offices and collecting maps and pamphlets. We sat in a bar in order to organize our trip and ordered some croissants and orange juice. Funnily, instead of peanuts or olives like in other bars in Valencia, they brought 4 Churros as a snack. Later, we went home. We figured that there are so many slopes in the city which are so high that there are mechanical stairs in the middle of the street. Once home we ate dinner and watched some Netflix before we went to sleep.

16th June 2021

Today we woke up at 8:00 and got ready for the day. Clara and Elena went to the supermarket to buy lunch while Alicia and I ate breakfast. We made some sandwiches and went to “Las Reformas”, where we bought boat tickets and visited a village named Pedreña. There wasn’t a lot to do there and it started raining so we decided to go back to Santander, but not before staying a little bit at a beach we saw, which was very beautiful.

Once we were back in the city, we decided to visit the Magdalena peninsula and luckily we got off the bus one stop later, and I say luckily because on the way to the Magdalena peninsula we saw three gorgeous beaches and the sun came out a little bit. Sadly, we didn’t have a bikini with us, because if we had, we would have swimmed in the sea.

We arrived at La Magdalena and walked around it. It was beautiful. We reached the Palacio de la Magdalena which is this breathtaking palace crowning the peninsula. We wanted to visit the inside but they only opened on Saturdays. Casually it was Saturday the day we went back home, so we bought tickets to visit it the earliest we could because we didn’t want to miss it, and the plane took off right after lunch. We were taking some pictures and a worker there saw us kind of struggling so he offered us help and took some awesome pictures.

Then we ate lunch in a viewpoint that faced the sea and after, we went back home. Once there we (or better said I) took a nap because we were very tired, and when I woke up, my friends had prepared a birthday surprise for me because we wouldn’t be together on my birthday. I was very excited and after we went to the city center and wandered looking at shops and stopped at a cafeteria to eat something, because it started to rain. We waited and when it stopped we went home.

17th June 2021

Today the plan was to take the 9:15 am train to Lierganes, a village here in Cantabria known for the Fish-man story. However we didn’t have anything for lunch so we had to wait for the supermarket to open at 9:00 and took the next train. The way there was beautiful and a bit long (50 minutes). There we got a map at the tourism office and first we visited the “Puente Mayor” and the “Hombre Pez” sculpture.

Later we did a 1 hour route around the monumental side of the village. A few moments later, we stopped at a cafeteria to eat some hot chocolate. Then we returned to the bridge and ate our lunch under it on a rock next to the Fish-man while investigating a bit about the story. There we met a galician family that were also visiting Lierganes and had a very cute and funny son.

After some time, we went back to the train station and then home to rest. Later in the evening, we visited a lift that is in the middle of the street which Elena knew from the last time she came. When you went up to the last floor, there was a viewpoint in which you could see the entire city of Santander, which to me was a breathtaking view, and I enjoyed it a lot. We also visited the Prehistoric and Archeological Museum of Santander which was very interesting.

Lastly, we looked for a nice restaurant to have dinner because we wanted to try some food from here, as we had been feeding ourselves with sandwiches the last few days. We found ine and ordered a Cantabrian cheese board for the middle and I ordered a hamburger. Everything tasted delicious. This has been my favorite day so far.

18th June 2021

Today we were finally going to Comillas, another village here that we were very excited to see. We had hired a tour with a company and they picked us up at 9:30am. With su came the tourist guide (obviously) and an Andalusian woman. During the trip she explained to us some history of Cantabria and a bit of context of the places we were passing with the van.

The first place we visited was the chapel-pantheon of Sobrellano. It houses the funerary monuments of the family, and among the interior ornamentation, the altar stands out, made in the workshops of Francisco Paula Isaura and Fragas. The play of light provided by the polychrome stained glass windows by Eudald Ramon Amigó that stand out against the robust side walls of the chapel. The seats, kneelers and benches were designed by Antonio Gaudi.

After a very interesting tour, we headed to the next location, the Capricho de Gaudí. It is a colorful and original palace designed by the great architect Antoni Gaudí. Considered one of his first relevant works, it marks the beginning of the modernist movement. In its facade, full of bright sunflowers, the architect hides a system of metaphors and symbolisms that tell us about nature, light and music. I loved this place and it inspired me a lot, sadly I didn’t take many pictures, but I still enjoyed it in real life.

After, we saw The Fountain of the three Cañamos and the San Cristóbal Church and got a little bit of free time to shop for some souvenirs. On the way home the results of the PAU exams came out, but Elena and I had promised each other that we wouldn’t look at them until we got to the apartment so we could see them calmly. We all got a good mark that allowed us into what we wanted to study, however, I still was doubting on the career I wanted to do. We ate some macaroni and later went to the city center again and I bought some clothes and a Quesada for my family (which was incredibly delicious).

19th June 2021

Our last day in Santander. We got up a little late, so we had to rush to clean up the apartment and make our suitcases, nevertheless we arrived at the time of our visit to the Magdalena Palace. Fun fact, the Andalusian woman that came to Comillas with us was there too. We were kind of disappointed because they only allowed us to visit the ground floor of the palace, so the conference rooms, dining room, ballroom etc. which are now used for conferences. The rest of the floors (there were six in total) were closed to visitors, but they explained they are used to give university classes, and the royal bedrooms had to stay there prepared in case the royal family decided to come (even though they haven’t been here in many decades.

Later we went home to pick up our things and headed to the bar which we went to on the first day to eat lunch and afterwards called a cabify to take us to the airport. The driver was venezuelan and he was very nice. Finally, we took the plane back to Valencia and at the airport was my dad who drove each one of us home.