Alternative tourism in Cantabria


When we talk about Alternative Tourism, we refer to a new type of tourism that is becoming increasingly fashionable. Travelers are looking for trips in order to carry out recreational activities in direct contact with both nature and the culture of the chosen destination.

The visitor who seeks this type of tourism, does so with the pretension of feeling at home and with the intention and commitment to enjoy, respecting, while getting to know the place, the natural and cultural resources.

It is a traveler who avoids mass tourism, a tourist who seeks exclusivity.


Cantabria offers us multiple activities to be able to carry out alternative tourism. Here are some of them:

Mountain routes:if you like the mountain and green landscapes, this is certainly a good option. We offer you various places such as the Route of Fuente Dé, in Picos de Europa, it is a stunning area, which is usually ascended by cable car to enjoy wonderful views from there. Another great route is El Desfiladero de la Hermida, with a length of 21 kilometers, the longest gorge in the country and with magnificent panoramas! Other unforgettable images are those that you can contemplate if you visit the Route of the Pasiegos Valleys and El Alto del Caracol with its incredible valleys and small towns, among many others.

Bike routes:The different paths, greenways and trails that we can find in Cantabria, make bike routes one of the preferences when it comes to enjoying the images that give us the territory and its nature. Routes such as Campoo-Bárcena Mayor, which covers two of the most emblematic valleys of Cantabria; or like the Besaya Greenway, where you will discover wonderful places like Suances or Santillana del Mar; any of them will make you enjoy your adventure to the fullest.

Learning to orient yourself:we propose the adventure of learning to locate yourself in the environment exactly, know the exact point of your position and know where you should go. Basic knowledge to be able to venture into the beautiful Cantabrian mountains and thus be able to enjoy to the maximum with our expeditions.

Birdwatching:Thousands of birds arrive in Cantabria every spring with the intention of spending the summer in the natural parks and marshes, once autumn arrives they return their trip to warmer places. We put different guided routes for this practice at your disposal: The Natural Park of the Marshes of Santoña, the Natural Park of Oyambre or the Bay of Santander are the best known.

Picos de Europa:these impressive mountains are part of the immense Cantabrian Mountains, belonging to the provinces of León, Cantabria and Asturias. Among them, we can find the Picos de Europa National Park, a place of immense scenic attraction and the second largest protected area in the country, declared a Biosphere Reserve in 2003.

Routes along the coast:Cantabria has magnificent beaches of fine sand and crystal clear waters, but it is also true that, next to them, there are green meadows, a set that gives you the opportunity to enjoy nature to the fullest. We can find places like Laredo, Suances, Langre, Comillas, Loredo or San Vicente de la Barquera.

Boat routes:a proposal that cannot be ruled out is to take boat trips through the Bay of Santander, make boat routes to the beautiful Beach of El Puntal or maritime excursions such as the Biodiversity excursion on the Island of

Mouro and vision of the seabed with more than forty different species of fish in its waters, whenever the sea allows it.

Our agencies offer you configured trips and also tailored to your needs

Featured Tours

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Ofrecido por Exploring Cantabria

En esta excursión de media jornada conocerás el pueblo de Comillas,  cuna del modernismo catalán y el único pueblo modernista de Cantabria.  Una visita obligada para cualquier amante de la arquitectura modernista.

Al llegar a Comillas visitaremos el Palacio de Sobrellano. Este edificio neogótico fue construido originalmente para ser el palacio de verano del marqués de Comillas y su amigo el rey Alonso XII.

El palacio se encuentra en lo alto de una pequeña colina desde donde también disfrutarás de unas estupendas vistas sobre el Antiguo Seminario Mayor (antes conocida como Universidad de Comillas). Este majestuoso edificio fue realizado por los arquitectos catalanes Joan Martorell y Lluís Domenech i Montaner e incluye diferentes influencias arquitectónicas.

Nuestra siguiente parada será visitar el “Capricho de Gaudí”, mansión construida por el famoso arquitecto catalán Antonio Gaudí y uno de los primeros edificios modernistas construidos en España y una de las pocas construcciones de Gaudí fuera de Cataluña.

Antes de salir de Comillas, haremos un recorrido panorámico por el pueblo para conocer algunos de sus lugares más relevantes: el cementerio viejo, la casa de la duquesa o el monumento a Antonio López.

Finalmente, en nuestro camino de regreso a Santander tomaremos  la carretera secundaria de la costa que atraviesa varios pueblos pequeños .


Duración: 5 horas
Grupos pequeños
Período: Todo el año
Salidas: Martes y Viernes 09:30 hrs
Punto de salida: Santander
Idiomas: Español e Inglés

5 horas


Provided by Exploring Cantabria

We will depart from Santander towards Comillas at 9:30 am. The village of Comillas is surprisingly a cradle and model of Catalonia modernism and it encompasses all elements necessary to satisfy any tourist and lover of modernist architecture.

As we arrive in Comillas, we will visit the Sobrellano Palace. This neo-gothic building was originally built to be the summer holiday palace for the Comillas Marquese and his friend King Alonso the XII. This palace is in the top of a little hill from where you will also enjoy great views over the  Old Major Seminary (previously known as Comillas University). This majestic building was done by Catalan architects Joan Martorell and Lluís Domenech i Montaner and it includes different architectural influences.

Our next stop will be to visit the “Capricho de Gaudí”. This is a mansion built by the famous Catalan architect Antonio Gaudí. This was one of the first modernist buildings constructed in Spain and one of the few constructions of Gaudí out of Catalonia. 

Before leaving Comillas, we will do a scenic drive around the village to know some of its most relevant places: the old graveyard, the duchess’ House or the monument to Antonio Lopez.

Finally, we will take a secondary road that crosses nice small villages on our way back to Santander.

Duration: 5 hrs
Small Groups 
Period: All year
Departures: Tuesdays and Fridays 09:30 hrs
Departure point: Santander
Languages: Spanish and English

5 hours


Ofrecido por Rumbo al norte

Una estancia en Cantabria de 5 días / 4 noches. El “Clásico” de nuestros programas para grupos. Si venís en autocar, nuestras guías os harán descubrir los imprescindibles de nuestra tierruca. Los lugares más emblemáticos de la región. Nuestro patrimonio artístico, histórico, pueblos con encanto, cuevas, naturaleza. No os conforméis con una estancia de 4 noches; consultar nuestros programas.

Estancia para grupos 5 dias / 4 noches

Experiencia lanera en Cantabria

Ofrecido por Nansa Natural

Te proponemos una experiencia rural muy especial con ovejas en el valle de Liébana (Cantabria), próximo al Parque Nacional de Picos de Europa, en la que te iniciarás en la preparación de la lana, una vez ya ha sido esquilada, y donde descubrirás la importancia de la ganadería extensiva en nuestra alimentación y en el paisaje.

Durante la experiencia lanera podrás estar junto al rebaño de ovejas para conocerlas más de cerca y descubrir sus personalidades. Verás la importancia de tener un perro pastor con el rebaño y aprenderás cómo es el trabajo de las pastoras que crían a sus animales con pastos de montaña.

Además iremos experimentando paso a paso, comenzaremos con la limpieza a mano antes del lavado retirando la materia vegetal, después lavaremos la lana en el lavadero del pueblo. Pasaremos al secado y luego al escarmenado de la lana. en la finca de la ganadera.

Esta actividad no se realiza si no hay al menos cinco adultos que participen. Consultar fechas disponibles.

Una mañana

Wool experience in Cantabria

Provided by Nansa Natural

We propose a very special rural experience with sheep in the Liébana valley (Cantabria), near the Picos de Europa National Park, in which you will start preparing the wool, once it has been sheared, and where you will discover the importance of extensive livestock in our diet and in the landscape.

During the wool experience you can be with the flock of sheep to get to know them more closely and discover their personalities. You will see the importance of having a shepherd dog with the flock and you will learn about the work of the shepherds who raise their animals with mountain pastures.

In addition, we will experiment step by step, we will begin with cleaning by hand before washing, removing the vegetable matter, then we will wash the wool in the town laundry. We will go on to drying and then to scaring the wool. on the ranch’s farm.

This activity is not done if there are not at least five adults participating. Check available dates.

One morning

Candina en velero

Ofrecido por Naturtrack
A bordo de un velero con plazas hasta 10 personas navegaremos por los imponentes acantilados de El Erillo, La Yesera y del Macizo de Candina, donde podremos avistar la colonia marina de buitre leonado y otras especies rupícolas como el halcón peregrino , chova piquirroja , alimoche , sin dejar de disfrutar de las más estrictamente marinas como el cormorán moñudo, la gaviota patiamarilla ó los alcatraces. Con un poco de suerte, los delfines podrán acompañarnos en la travesía, poniendo el broche de oro a una ruta donde experimentaremos la aventura de la navegación a vela. Todo ello interpretado por nuestros guías expertos en la fauna, singularidades y características geológicas y paisajísticas de la zona.
4 – 5 horas

Candina by sailboat

Provided by Naturtrack
Aboard a sail boat with a maximum capacity of 10 people, we will be sailing by the impressive cliffs of El Erillo, La Yesera and the Macizo of Candina, where we can observe the marine colony of griffon vultures and other cliff-nesting species like the peregrine falcon, chough and Egyptian vulture, as well as the strictly marine species like the shag, the yellow-legged gull or the gannet. With a bit of luck, we could be joined by some dolphins on our voyage, which would be the icing on the cake on this sailing adventure. We will be accompanied at all times by our experts in the fauna and particularities and geological and landscape features of the area.
4 – 5 hours

Peregrino por un día

Ofrecido por Naturtrack
Travesía lineal, utilizamos el Camino del Norte a Santiago en una de sus etapas más bellas, combinando sendas fluviales, patrimonio arquitectónico e histórico, todo ello interpretado medioambientalmente por nuestros guías, con quienes tendremos la oportunidad de avistar las aves más emblemáticas del área. Sin duda una de las rutas más completas para conocer todos los secretos de la Montaña Oriental Costera.
5 horas

Pilgrim for a day

Provided by Naturtrack
A straight walk, taking in one of the most spectacular stages of the Northern Road to Santiago, following river paths and passing through architectural and historical heritage sites, with an interpretation of the environment provided by our guides. We will join them in being able to sight the area’s most emblematic birds. Undoubtedly one of the most complete trails for discovering the secrets of the Eastern Coastal Mountains.
5 hours

Camino de Santiago por la costa del norte de España – 2 semanas

Ofrecido por Iberocycle
Participe en esta antigua peregrinación. Todo el camino desde San Sebastián por la costa hasta Santiago de Compostela. El Camino del Norte. La ruta del Camino de Santiago a lo largo de la costa del norte de España, desde San Sebastián hasta Santiago de Compostela. – la camaradería de compartir la ruta con una multitud de peregrinos – hermosas ciudades y pueblos a lo largo de la costa de España – un paisaje siempre cambiante al cruzar el norte de España de este a oeste – la indescriptible sensación de llegar a Santiago
15 días / 14 noches

The Way of St. James along the coast of Northern Spain - 2 weeks

Provided by Iberocycle
Take part in this ancient pilgrimage. All the way from San Sebastián along the coast to Santiago de Compostela. The Camino del Norte. The Camino de Santiago route along the coast of Northern Spain, from San Sebastián to Santiago de Compostela. – the camaraderie of sharing the route with a multitude of pilgrims – beautiful cities and villages along the coast of Spain – ever-changing scenery as we cross Northern Spain from east to west – the indescribable sensation of arriving in Santiago
15 days / 14 nights