Driving in Spain

Driving in Spain

Wow, could I tell you some stories about driving in Spain but…                                

I want to make this short and sweet.

Firstly, here is a scary fact. In the twelve months of 2008, 3,100 people lost their lives in road accidents. I can’t find any later statistics but thankfully I think the trend is downward. The major TV channel TVE 1 in Spain dedicates air time to traffic accidents, especially in summer, over festival periods and long holiday weekends, called ‘puentes’ .

There have been campaigns by the Government to bring to people’s attention to the effects of drink driving and the use of seat belts and the introduction of penalty points for traffic offences in the last few years have tamed some people. But, if there is one thing the Spanish in general don’t have the manaña attitude to, it’s driving. They like speed, to overtake anywhere (the more dangerous the better).

No Overtaking

I’m no perfect driver, in fact I think I have picked up a few bad habits since driving here and I know I have seen some really bad driving in the UK and NO LADIES I am not pointing the finger at you BUT here, where I live, there doesn’t seem to be any rules and the police seem to be very good at turning 2 blind eyes. I mean, I have never seen so many people stop where they like, put on their hazard lights and double park! No thought for the danger, the inconvenience for other motorists or the fact that they have just blocked at least 2 parked cars in.

Go to any Supermarket or Centro Commercial and take a look in the car park. I don’t know why they bother painting  parking bays as the trend is to abandon your car and take up two spaces rather than park it.

No Waiting

You don’t see it so much now but one of the craziest and most dangerous things I think I saw when I first arrived was the family of 3 and sometimes 4 all on a moped. Father has his helmet on and sod the rest of the family, kids in the middle and Mum holding on at the back for dear life!

I’ll get off my high horse now before I tempt providence and go and have a car accident myself. I must admit, I have already been involved in one but it wasn’t my fault, no one was hurt and my insurance company covered the total cost. Mind you the other driver wasn’t happy as his insurance claim meant his premium would be going up, he therefore started to threaten me but that’s a story for another day…

What should you look out for when driving in Spain?   Well apart from the above.

Give Way

For some insane reason (just my opinion) some people from the UK still want to bring their car over to Spain. I have friends who have done so and say they have no problems driving a right hand drive car here. That said; not one of them doesn’t have a number of dents on their cars.

I considered doing the same because I really loved my car and I lost an awful lot of money when selling it! But having visited Spain a lot before moving here and with my experience of driving a hire car around Jerez when we first found the town, I knew that my pristine car wouldn’t stay that way very long.

If you are considering bringing your right hand drive car from the UK, make it legal in Spain. That becomes one big headache because it involves an awful lot of paperwork if you become a resident (which you will be, if you stay longer than 6 months) Check that your insurance is valid, again a headache and if you become a resident you must put the car on Spanish plates and pay an import tax. This is something a lot of my compatriots either neglect to do or just don’t know they are obliged to do.

Slippery Road

If you are going to buy a car in Spain, be careful if it’s a private sale, especially if you don’t yet speak good Spanish. Take a translator and study the documentation and make sure everything is genuine and up to date. As this post is about driving, I’ll do another post on buying a car at another date as this entails a lot of paperwork, which is why a lot of folks buy from a dealer who will do all the paperwork for you!

Other important points are:

In Spain you always need to have with you, your Driving Licence, car purchase documents and car insurance together with a bank receipt that shows that the insurance premium has been paid.

If you are a non EU citizen you must obtain a Spanish Licence. You cannot exchange your home country licence for a Spanish one. You can get advice from the Spanish Consulate in your home Country. Better still, there is a wonderful Reference Book that covers every single aspect of the legalities and motoring in Spain. I have a copy of the first edition and it is now on the third edition.

The authors name is Brian J. Dellar and the book is called ‘Motoring in Spain’.                                                                                        

The link is HERE and I must disclose if you purchase through this Amazon link I stand to make a small commission.

Hey, I’m not trying to force you to buy it but I highly recommend it and you won’t end up paying any more for your purchase but you will help me keep this blog an ad free zone.

Paul Signature

 

And take a look here to see there are worst places in the world to drive than Spain!

 

 

 

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Christmas in Spain

So what’s it like spending Christmas in Spain?        

Why don’t you come and see for yourself?
Instead of coming to Spain in summer, come at Christmas.

Yeah, I know, Christmas is all about children, family get togethers and sharing with good friends, right!

Okay, I’ve got an idea for you, spend Xmas at home with the family and come out to Spain for the New Year! Make sure you get out here around the 2nd or 3rd of January and stay for a week, at least.

In Spain the traditional day for celebrating is not the 25th of December, although since I have been living here Christmas has become more commercial. To be honest my kids have always been lucky in the respect of getting presents both at Christmas and ‘Los Reyes’. That’s our choice because my eldest spent his first 4 years in England at Christmas and I’m a sucker for seeing the smiles on their faces 🙂

 

The 3 Kings / Reyes Magos

The 3 Kings / Reyes Magos

So, what or who  are ‘Los Reyes’? 

Los Reyes are the Three Kings. Baltasar, Melchor and Gaspar.

On the night of January 5th, the Three Kings come into each and every home and leave presents for the children, you know just like Father Christmas but they don’t come down the chimney!:

Earlier on in the evening in nearly every city, town and village there will be a procession and a parade of floats where children throw sweets and each of the Kings are sat on an elaborately decorated float, pulled either by tractor, horses or camels. They throw presents and sweets out to the crowds. Children and adults bring plastic bags and some even take umbrellas and hold them upside down to catch the sweets.

After the processions have passed families go to the bars for tapas and a drink, here in Jerez mostly for a Sherry.

In my house, from a very early age the kids were taught, the tradition of cleaning a pair of shoes and leaving them out so the Kings will know what presents belong to whom. This tradition has been passed down the generations of my wife’s family. I also have to clean a pair of shoes and just like the kids if I haven’t been good the Kings will only leave me a lump of coal. It hasn’t happened yet though 🙂

May be because we always leave a glass of something nice for each king!

 

Going back to Christmas, a couple of things that I really, really enjoy are Zambombas y Pestiños!

ZambombasWhat’s a Zambomba? A Zambomba is a Christmas gathering of people who form the shape of a circle,  normally its family, neighbours and friends but typically are held in public places and everyone’s invited! It consists of  songs and typical flamenco Christmas carols. Its name comes from the instrument called the zambomba, which marks the beat. Zambomba’s are mainly in Jerez de la Frontera (Cádiz) where it is said to have originated, but over time they have spread to other Andalusian towns.

Here’ a short video.

What are Pestiños? Ah…Pestiños
They are basically indescribably delicious flaky and delicate pastries covered in honey. Our friend Mari-Jose makes the best in the whole of Jerez in my opinion. My mouths watering and I can’t wait for Christmas to come quick enough.  The  ingredients are flour, anise seeds or flavouring, white wine (vino fino) and oil. Here’s the recipe but they won’t taste the same!

Pestiños

Last but not least is that unlike most countries I know, the main meal is not served on Christmas day but on the evening
of the 24th. It’s usually a big affair with many courses and a wide variety of different food. Though, normally not turkey the main dishes are preceded by a selection soups, seafood, cheeses, pates and delicious serrano hams.

For the Spanish, food and drink has and always will be close to their hearts. At Christmas time you can eat many delicious specialities to celebrate the festive season. Main dishes vary from province to province and from home to home but Lobster, Roast lamb, Baby Suckling Pig or Cod could all be on the menu.

For dessert there may be trifle or fruit but mostly the Spanish Christmas is not Christmas without Turron, Mazapan, Polvorones or Rosquillos de Vino.

Turronthe essential Christmas sweet in Spain, this is nougat and there are many soft or hard varieties with every table having a selection

Mazapanmarzipan, either plain or shaped

Polvorones traditionally made at home, these small cakes are made from basic ingredients with a selection of flavours added

Rosquillos de vino – small biscuits flavoured with anise and sometimes wine.

And finally………… To DRINK…

Sherry - Amontillado

Sherry – Amontillado

Drinks certainly do not take second stage and Spanish red and white wines will be in plentiful supply. Perhaps a sherry and then some Cava (which is similar to Champagne) and then on to the hard stuff, perhaps a nice Brandy. I think you get the idea…

Where ever you spend Christmas this year, I wish you all a very HAPPY & PEACEFUL one indeed.

Paul Signature

PS. There is also a BIG lottery held on the 22nd of December. Its oficial name is Sorteo Extraordinario de Navidad but nearly everyone in Spain know it as ‘EL GORDO’ (the FAT one!).

 

 

Eating habits in Spain

Eating habits in Spain

If you’ve ever spent a holiday in Spain, that’s just crazy, of course youv’e had a holiday somewhere in Spain! It’s probably what started the majority of you guys reading this, the love affair you have with this beautiful Country.

So, lets start again.

How do you spot the tourists in Spain?

Well, an easy way is to pass by the restaurants and see they are the only ones sitting there!

A major way of getting straight into the Spanish life style so your living on the same time lines, is CHANGE YOUR EATING HABITS!

That doesn’t really mean to change what you eat but you will because the food here is different and marvellous. What I mean is, you need to change your body clock and start eating at the same times as the Spanish do. That doesn’t mean you have to eat out everyday, although that is a very Spanish thing to do, just try and get out of your normal lunch, dinner and tea times. That way you will be able to get yourselves into the Spanish way of life and intergrate and do the things the Spanish do and join in with them.

Below is basically how it works here, I’m always being teased by my Spanish friends about having tea at 5.00pm. I don’t know how long ago the British used to do that, probably the Queen is still doing that but as I tell them, I’m really not in that class! Take a look and tell me what you think of the Spanish eating times in the comment box below:

My idea is to provide a few helpful hints to speed up the enjoyment process but I’ll be honest with you, even after 8 years here I still have my breakfast before the kids go to school on a normal working week. Although, un café con leche around 10.00-10.30 is quite acceptable to me.

Spanish eating habits.

The Spanish eating habits take a while to get used to and leave many visitors perplexed. The fact meal times are quite different from the UK and America, and to a certain extent to the dining customs in most parts of Europe.

  • Breakfast  (Desayuno 10.00 – 11.30. For most this means  a cup of coffee and may be toast or a croissant. 
  • Lunch (Comida)  14.00 – 16.00. If eating in a restaurant this will be typically a large 3-course meal. This will also be the same for a majority of households in Spain as for most it is the day’s main meal.
  • Afternoon Snack (Merienda) 17.00 – 18.00. This is big for the children in Spain but the adults don’t mind getting in on the action either!
  • Dinner (Cena) 21.00 – 24.00. This  is probably the one meal time that throws everybody out because it’s taken so late!. Most restaurants don’t even open until after eight thirty or nine and tend to stay open until midnight and much later in summer.  

FOR MY NEXT POST CONCERNING FOOD.  I will discuss the Menu del Dia.

Making a Will in Spain

Making a Will in Spain

August 2015 Update: Regulation 650/2012

European Regulation 650/2012 will have on an impact on all foreign residents who live and own assets in Spain and who have made a Spanish will.

In force since 2012, the regulation introduces significant changes to Succession that may require you to make a new Spanish will. These changes will come into force as from the 17th of August 2015. Anyone affected by it that passes away on or after the said date and who has not updated their Spanish will accordingly may cause devastating problems to their beneficiaries (normally family). Please inform yourself about Regulation 650/2012 and take legal advice when making a Will in Spain.

 

1. Who can make a will in Spain?

As a general rule, the testator must be, at least 14 years of age, and legally capable to make a valid will.

2. Types of wills

2.1. Holographic will

Anyone who had come of age can make this type of will.

It shall be written entirely in the handwriting of the testator and shall be dated and signed by him on every page. It must be verified as genuine before a judge. It is required that the handwriting of the decedent be authenticated by witnesses, who must be the decedent’s closest relatives.

Once it is verified, the judge will enforce the will’s contents. The estate shall be distributed in accordance with the provisions of the will.

2.2. Open will

This is the usual form of will for most people in Spain. It is made before a Notary, who shall keep the original document in his files. The Notary will send a notification of the will to the Central Registry of Spanish Wills (Registro Central de Última Voluntad) located in Madrid.

The Notary may request the presence of 2 witnesses, who can also be required in case the testator is blind or illiterate.

It must be shown that a minor, a person who is blind, deaf, dumb, and the spouse and closer relatives of the testator cannot act as witnesses.

2.3. Closed will

Executing this will you will keep secret your provisions putting them in an envelope.

You shall declare before the notary that your provisions are contained in the envelope and declare whether you have written them by yourself or it has been written by a third person, also you shall declare whether you have signed it or it has been signed by a third person for you.

The notary then seals the envelope and signs it, then he files it and send a notification of the will to the Central Registry of Spanish Wills (Registro Central de Última Voluntad) located in Madrid.

This will cannot be made neither by blind nor by illiterate persons.

3. The Central Registry of Spanish willsbits-26

Every will has got a certification number in Spain which is kept on file to the Central Registry of Spanish wills (Registro Central de Última Voluntad) located in Madrid. The certification numbers of all Spanish wills are kept in this place in order to ensure that the estate neither be sold nor transferred illegally.

A legal copy of a will can always be found there. In case you don’t know whether the decedent made a Spanish will or not, or if the will is lost, you can request a certificate to the central registry under the deceased person’s name. If the will exists, the registry will provide you with the number and the name of the notary who made it in the first place,this will enable you to get a copy of the will from the notary.

The certificate can only be applied within15 days after the testator’s death.

4. Revocation of the will

To revoke a will the testator must have the same mental capacity as it is required in making one.

The provisions made in a will can be revoked even when the testator had previously declared his intention of not revoking these.

A will may be revoked by the execution of a new will, which may amend, replace or make ineffective all prior wills. It can also be revoked when the testator declares before a notary his intention to cancel or keep any of the provisions of the will. The alterations shall be made under the same conditions as in making the previous will.

If there is more than one will, only the last one made is legally valid. You can be informed about the number of wills the decedent made by requesting for a certificate to the Central Registry of Spanish Wills.

5. Nullity of the will

A will is null and void in any of the following cases:

The “joint will” with provisions agreed upon by two or more persons.
If the testator had no legal capacity to make it.
The will made by a testator who is subject to domination, fraud or duress.
When the testator designates as beneficiary a person who is unknown and cannot be identified.
When the testator designates as beneficiary a person who is not legally capable.
If the testator had revoked the will.
An olographic will is null if it is not filed before the Judge within 5 years after the testator’s death.
A closed will is null if its covers or the envelope containing it are damaged, or if the signatures are deleted, unless it can be proved that the testator damaged his will during a state of mental derangement.

September 11 1466. Scope of inheritors

Who shall inherit the decedent’s property in Spain and in what proportions it shall be distributed?:

a) If the decedent died leaving a valid will, the persons who shall inherit his property will be the following:

Compulsory heirs: The Spanish laws of succession determine obligatory heirs, who shall inherit at least, one third of the decedent’s assets, this portion is called “la legítima“. The obligatory heirs of the deceased are:
In the first place his children (biological children and individuals adopted) and his issue,
His ascendants, when the deceased had no descendants.
The surviving spouse shall receive the usufruct over one third of the estate, in case the testator died leaving issue. Over half of the estate, when the decedent died without issue while his ascendants were still alive, or over two thirds of the estate, if the decedent died without ascendants nor descendants.
The voluntary heirs: The testator may leave part of his assets to the persons of his choice. Beneficiaries may inherit those assets exceeding the third of the estate named as “la legítima”. The surviving spouse shall receive the usufruct over third of the assets, , or over half of the estate, when the decedent died without issue while his ascendants were still alive.
If there are no compulsory heirs, voluntary heirs may inherit all the decedent’s assets.

Along with the compulsory and voluntary heirs, the legatees will inherit specific assets that the testator may have disposed for them.

b) If the decedent died intestate:

If the decedent dies leaving no will, the Spanish law of succession determines who shall inherit. The decedent is considered to have died intestate in the following cases:

When there appear to be assets which have not been included in the decedent’s will. These assets shall be distributed in the manner that the Spanish law provides for intestacy.
When the heirs do not accept the will, or it is not accepted within the period legally required.
When the inheritor is incapable of inheriting.
When the will has being destroyed.
When the will does not include all the obligatory heirs, or includes someone considered as compulsory heir when he turns not to be.
When the will is null.
The Spanish laws of succession set out the following hierarchy of inheritors in case of intestacy:

Descendants: The decedent’s issue and their descendants will inherit in the first place. Either legitimate, illegitimate child or individuals adopted have the same succession rights.
Ascendants: They will inherit when the decedent dies without leaving issue. They will inherit in equal parts.
The spouse will inherit if the decedent has neither issue nor ascendants.
Collateral family: If the decedent had neither descendants, nor ascendants, nor spouse, his brothers and/or sisters will inherit equal parts of the estate. Nephews/nieces will inherit the portion that would have corresponded to the brother/sister deceased (brother/sister of the testator and father/mother of the nephews/nieces who shall inherit)
Cousins will inherit when there exist no one of the individuals above mentioned.
The Spanish Government will inherit when there exist no one of the individuals above mentioned.

7. Share of the inheritors in succession

If the deceased was married under community property marital regime, which is the general regime for matrimonial property in Spain (though some Spanish regions such as Catalonia, Basque Country, etc. differ from this regime), half of the decedent’s property do not form part of the estate, but continues to belong to the surviving spouse.

The other half of the estate less the charges must be divided intro three equal parts. The surviving issue will inherit at least one third of the assets, which is called “la legítima“, another third of the assets must also be left to to the children, but the testator may decide how this is to be divided. The surviving spouse shall receive the usufruct of this third of the assets, and the inheritors cannot dispose of it freely until the surviving parent dies. The testator may leave the last third of his assets to anyone he pleases.

When the decedent died without issue and descendants, the surviving ascendants shall inherit one third of the estate, if there is a surviving spouse, and half of the estate, if he has no surviving spouse. When there are neither children nor ascendants, the surviving spouse shall inherit the usufruct of two thirds of the estate.

8. DisinheritanceOctober Rota 2015 072

This is the act of a person that has the effect of depriving an obligatory heir of the property that would have been distributed to that person under the Spanish laws of succession. Disinheritance can only be made by leaving a valid will.

a) In general terms, the testator may disinherit an obligatory heir on the following grounds:

When the testator’s parents had deserted, prostituted or corrupted their children.
For using any act of violence or coercion to hinder a testator from making, modifying or hiding a will.
If the inheritor had used any act of violence or coercion to force a testator to make or modify a will.
The heir may be disinherited were he condemned for having attempted to take away the life of either the testator, his spouse, descendants or ascendants.

b) Specific reasons to disinherit his descendants could be the following:

If the descendants had refused sustenance to their parents, having the means to afford it.
When having maltreated physically, or seriously insulted the testator.
c) Specific reasons to disinherit the parents to disinherit the testator’s parents are as follows::

To have been deprived of the paternal authority that belonged to the legitimate father or mother upon the testator child, owing to a sentence based on the non-fulfilment of the duties involved in paternal authority.
. Having refused to provide food and nourishment to their child.
d) Specific reasons to disinherit to his/her spouse can be the following:

To have refused sustenance to his/her child or the spouse, having the means to afford it.
If the spouse had attempted to take away the life of either parent, when there exist no reconciliation later.
If the disinherited legitimary challenges and disputes the disinheritance alleging the non-existence of the reason, the evidence that such cause did exist corresponds to the rest of the heirs.

The child and descendants of the disinherited person shall keep their rights as obligatory heirs

The reconciliation of the testator with the legitimary who has incurred in cause of disinheritance, leave the disinheritance without effect.

Testamento9. Acceptance, repudiation of the inheritance

Acceptance is a declaration of the heir’s intention to inherit all rights and obligations that belonged to the decedent. He may accept through a public or a private document, it may also be accepted tacitly, by taking the assets he was left.

The heir may accept the inheritance in profit of inventory “a beneficio de inventario“, which means that the heir will only pay the decedent’s obligations up to the limit of the assets contained in the will, otherwise they shall pay the total amount of the debt even with their personal property. It is advisable that the heirs accept in profit of inventory when it is uncertain the deceased’s ability to pay the debts he contracted. The acceptance in profit of inventory can be made before a notary, a judge or before a consular agent, in case the heir is not in his country of origin.

The heir may renounce the inheritance by declaring it on a public deed before a notary or a judge. If the summoned individual repudiate an inheritance in prejudice of his creditors, these will be entitled to request from the judge that he authorises such creditors to accept the inheritance in the name and in lieu of the repudiating party, for the sole purposes of recovering their credits on the hereditary estate. The creditors then shall recover their credits on the hereditary estate. The remaining assets corresponding to the debtor heir, who renounced to the inheritance shall be shared among the rest of the inheritors.

 

Acceptance or repudiation of the inheritance shall be declared within 30 days after the death of the decedent.

Please note the information provided in this article is of general interest only and is not to be construed or intended as substitute for professional legal advice.

This article was taken from http://iabogado.com/

iAbogado is an English-speaking firm located in Spain.

The Rain in Spain …

The Rain in Spain …

Yes, you know the old saying, ‘The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain’. iframe>

Now I think it’s true to say that the majority of folk living outside of Spain, want to move here for the sunny weather. I’m writing this now in the middle of December and the difference in temperature today from living in the South of Spain to the North of Spain is 10º.

Yep, today’s high is 11º for Cadiz and 1º in Valladolid and I reckon in general the same can be said for summer, when it’s 40º here it will be around 30º or less in the north!

Okay, lets get back to the rain.

Of course it doesn’t rain down here in the South of Spain, it’s always sunny 🙂

Well, I am not trying to sell you a property or anything like that and you come here to get the truth right?

This year (2010) was the wettest winter I have known since I’ve been living in Spain. It rained almost constantly for nearly 3 months. Yes, it was an exception to the rule but you need to be prepared for these things and especially when buying a property. A lot of the older properties as well as some of the newer ones just aren’t built for the rain, they have flat roof terraces where the rain water rushes down pipes that run through the pillars of the house. No guttering, although it is becoming a slight fashion item of late.

HERE ARE SOME PICTURES OF THE FLOODS FROM LAST YEAR.

The houses in this area were under a meter of water

So, as you can work out for yourself, although there are nearly always 300 days of sunshine per year in some parts of Spain but the ‘Rain in Spain doesn’t lay mainly on the plain’.

HERE ARE THE TOP 20 WETTEST TOWNS IN SPAIN. (from www.weather-in-spain.co.uk)

1. Tornavacas, Caceres. Surprisingly the wettest town in Spain, situated as it is in the region of Extremadura, which is known for its long hot summers and long, mild winters.  Tornavacas is located near the mountain range of Sierra de Gredos, a regional park just 2 hours east from Madrid.

Tornavacas itself is 920 metres above sea level and, based on records taken from over the past 5 years, the rainiest month in Tornavacas is January, with an average of 816.7 mm of rain, followed by March which gets an average of 610.1 mm.  In contrast, August in Tonics gets just 1.7 mm of rain.

2.  Renteria, Navarra. Situated near Arano, about 10km south east of San Sebastian in the top north eastern corner of Spain, near the border with France.  Again, the rainiest month is January, with 610.4 mm of rain.

3.  Cabeza de Manzaneda, Ourense. Situated in the north western corner of Spain, in the region of Galicia, this town has had an average of 601.1 mm of rain in January, its wettest month, for the past 5 years.  This town is located approx 50km west of the main town of Ourense and is situated at 1,500 m above sea level.

4.  Blanes, Girona. A well-known seaside town in Catalunya, located just a few kilometres southwest of the popular resorts of Lloret de Mar and Tossa de Mar, Blanes has had an average of 582.4mm of rain in March over the past 5 years.  Even the month of August shows an average of 25.6mm of rain over the past 5 years.

5.  San Sebastian, Asturias. Situated on the northern coast of Spain, San Sebastian is the capital city of Gipuzkoa province, in the Spanish Basque Country.  An average rainfall of 525.5 mm was recorded over the past 5 years in the month of January, with 46mm in July and 31mm in August.

6.  Baza, Granada. This historic town in Andalucia has recorded an average of 520mm rainfall over 5 years during the month of November, with 147.5mm in July and 196mm in August, compared to 120mm in February.

7.  Noai (Monte Iroite), A Coruna. Situated in the north western tip of Spain, in the region of Galicia, this town shows an average of 501 mm of rain in the month of November, with 81mm in July and 47.1 in August.  January, March and October are also wet months recording 307.4mm, 355.2mm and 374mm respectively.

8.  Girona, Girona. The capital of Girona province in the Costa Brava region of Northern Catalunya, situated 100 metres above sea level, Girona recorded an average of 490mm rainfall in the month of March.

9.  Arantzazu, Vizcaya. Situated just 15km south east of the main industrial town of Bilbao in the Spanish Basque country, this town recorded an average of 472 mm of rain in March, 74 mm in July and 48 mm in August.

10.  Burguillos, Toledo. Located just south of the town of Toledo (well known for its production of steel) in the centre of Spain, approximately 75km south west of Madrid.  January is the wettest month, showing an average of 469.1mm of rain.

11.  Alcala del Rio, Seville. Located just 15 km north of Seville capital city in Andalucia, Alcala del Rio has had an average of 464.5mm of rain recorded in December, yet just 2.6mm in June, 2.7mm in July and 0 rainfall in August.

12.  Polentinos, Palencia. This tiny town is situated in the Castile y Leon region in northern Spain and recorded a population of just 78 inhabitants in 2004!  An average of 446.7mm of rain was recorded in October, yet 0mm in July and 69.1 in August.  Polentinos is situated at 1245m above sea level in one of the least known, but best conserved mountain ranges in Spain.  The area is classified as national park and known as “Parque Natural Fuentes Carrionas y Fuente Cobre”  southeast of the better-known Picos de Europa and in the middle of the square formed by Leon and Burgos to the south and Santander and Gijon to the north.

13. San Pelaio de Lens, A Coruna. Situated approx 12km north west of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia and 200m above sea level.  An average of 422mm of rain recorded in March, 33.2mm in June, 58.6mm in July and 36mm in August.

14. Escorca, Son Torrella, Mallorca (Islas Baleares). Located in the north western part of the popular island of Mallorca, this town recorded an average of 420 mm of rain in November, 69.5mm in August, though lower (19.2mm) in June and 18.8mm in July .

15.  Torroella de Montgri, Girona. Located on the Costa Brava, just inland from the well-known resort of L’Estartit, famous for the Medes Islands, a protected marine reserve and popular diving resort.  Average 411.7 mm of rain recorded in October, 87.8 in August 93.9 in July.

16.  Mairena del Alcor, Seville. Just west of the capital of Andalucia, Seville, this town has had an average of 405.3 mm of rain in November over the past five years, though no rain was recorded during the summer months and just 4.9mm in April.

17.  Santa Pau, Girona. A 13th century town, situated some 65km inland of the Costa Brava, just south east of Olot in the protected national park area of the Zona Volcanica de la Garrotxa, which as 30 volcanic cones.  Santa Pau is 590 m above sea level and has recorded highs of 397.8mm of rain in October, 32.5mm in August.

18.  Villasana de Mena, Burgos. Approximately 35km south west of Bilbao, this town has recorded an average 396.2 mm rain in the month of October, with June and July showing as the driest months with an average of 54.1 mm and 48.6 mm of rain respectively.

19.  Vic, Barcelona. An historic town with strong religious traditions situated 70km north of Barcelona and 515m above sea level.  Average 387.1 mm of rain recorded in January over the past 5 years.

20.  Priego de Cordoba, Cordoba. An olive-oil producing town, situated in Andalucia, around 50km south west of Jaen and 50km north west of Granada.   Average 367.2 mm of rain recorded in November.  20.7 mm in July and 41.1 mm in August.

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