Here’s our pics of the best books about Spain, movies that capture the quintessential ambiance of Spanish life, identity and nature, tv shows that gives you in-depth knowledge of history or culture and links to helpful websites.
Miguel de Cervantes – Don Quixote
The classic tale about the unlucky knight dates back to 1605, but it still considered a literary “must-read”. In Spanish, if you’re in for challenge!
Giles Tremlett – Ghosts of Spain: Travels through Spain and its silent past
Essential reading for anybody really looking to get under the skin of the Spanish psyche
Ildefonso Falcones – Cathedral of the Sea
Historical novel about 14th century Barcelona, with the construction of Santa Maria del Mar serving as background to the story
C. W. Gortner – The Queen’s Vow
This historic novel examines the life of 15th century Isabella of Castile, one of the most famous women in history
Noah Gordon – The Last Jew
Chronicle about the Jews in the 15th century Spain, in the time of Inquisition
Ildefonso Falcones – The hand of Fatima
Another historical masterpiece at whopping 887 pages tells the story about the oppression of the Moors in 16th century Andalucia
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown
Let’s start with a Spanish movie, by the famous Pedro Almodóvar, that specialises in black comedy drama.
In the fascist Spain of 1944, the young stepdaughter of a sadistic army officer escapes into an eerie fantasy world.
Sophia Loren and Charlton Heston star in this classic movie from 1961 about the fabled Spanish hero El Cid, that defended Christian Spain against the Moors.
Ocho Apellidos Vascos
A romantic comedy about the prejudice and cultural differences between Northern and Southern Spain.
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Woody Allen’s story about two girlfriends on a summer holiday in Spain that become enamored with the same painter. Guess where it takes place!
This TV-Show is for Spain what Downtown Abbey was for ..well, the rest of the world. Follow guests and staff at a grand Spanish hotel towards the beginning of the 20th century.
El tiempo entre costuras
Based on the bestselling novel by Spanish author Maria Dueñas, follows the fortunes of a seamstress from Madrid under the Spanish Civil war.
This lavish three season TV-show portrays the life of 15th century Isabella of Castile.
This high-end TV-show is featured on both UK and US Netflix and is set in a 1950s department store on Madrid’s Gran Via.
El ministerio del tiempo
This spanish TV-show is the European equivalent to the US show Timeless. Unique, historical characters join a secret agency to prevent people from changing Spanish history.
Globe Trekker – Spain
One of our favourite Travel TV-Shows have explored many parts of Spain. Check them out to find a topic of your interest!
Rick Steves in Spain
America’s most respected authority on European travel has visited several destinations in Spain, and you can see all 26-minute videos on Youtube.
I’ve included this TV-show, not because of it’s quality, but because of it’s ability to teach you Spanish. The “Friends” themed TV-show combines soap-comedy and education in one fun package. And it’s free to watch on Youtube!
Spain – on Wikipedia.
AEMet – Spain’s national weather forecast.