Birds of Cantabria
Saga Hosted Hotels
Head to the stunning Cantabria region – an area so lush it is known as ‘Green Spain – to seek out spectacular scenery and incredible birdlife on a series of included excursions.
On your first excursion head to the rocky cliffs of Monte Cardina to see the largest marine colony of griffon vultures in Europe and the following day transfer to the stunning oak forest of Ucieda and Liencres Dunes Natural Park where the combination of sea cliffs, dunes and pine forest attracts a host of small birds.
You will spend a day exploring the marshes of Santoña Natural Park, a renowned nature reserve close to your hotel which is home to some 18,000 birds over the winter, while one of the highlights of your holiday is sure to be your visit to the Picos de Europa National Park where a cable car ride puts you in position to search the skies for eagles. Your final excursion is to Collados del Asón Natural Park where in addition to birds you might spot some native amphibians.
Five included excursions and visits
Vultures of Monte Cardina (half day)
Ucieda Oak Forest (full day)
Marshes of Santoña Natural Park (full day)
Picos de Europa National Park (full day)
Collados del Asón Natural Park (full day)
Expect a warm welcome from owners Felipe and Margot at this family-run hotel on the rugged Cantabrian coast. Food is a huge focus here: enjoy lunches of tapas at the bar; feast on fresh fish for dinner at the sea-view restaurant; and sip regional wines hand-selected by Felipe as you watch the hotel’s chef demonstrate how to prepare a few Cantabrian specialities. Scenic walking trails lead practically from the hotel’s front door, while the centre of town is an easy five-minute bus ride away.
Local expert guide
Expert host talks
Welcome drink reception
Five included excursions and visits
Free local bus tickets to Santoña
All inclusive: All meals. Tapas/snack lunches and waiter served table d’hôte dinners
Wine list at meal times including Rioja and Ribera del Duero wines
Free bar open 12 hours a day serving a wide range of spirits
Weekly shuttle to Santander
International flights. Prices are based on return flights with easyJet from London Gatwick. Supplements may apply from other airports
Return transfers direct to your hotel
Santoña, Costa de Cantabria, Spain
From £1,419 per person
Including optional travel insurance or a price reduction if not required
Food and drink
Enjoy delicious home cooked dishes typical of the region: savour buffet-style breakfasts, tasty tapas or snack lunches at the bar or on its terrace and waiter-served dinners in their locally acclaimed à la carte restaurant where seafood is a speciality. Dinners are pre-ordered the day before and are eaten at set times, ensuring your food is freshly cooked. Complimentary tea and cake is also available at 4pm daily in the bar. A delicious demonstration The hotel prides itself on its food, and during your stay you’ll be able to enjoy an included cookery demonstration – a great way to take a taste of Spain back to your own kitchen. As the chef cooks up a storm, you’ll be able to taste a selection of wine from the area, each carefully selected by the hotel’s owner, Felipe.
During your stay, you can enjoy the following programme of activities and entertainment. Some activities are at an additional charge. Activities may change from time to time. A cookery demonstration with a selection of wines Live music/flamenco dancing A talk on interesting facts and differences between the British and Spanish cultures Mystery tours Table football Golf - Available nearby – please ask the resort staff for details
The hotel has 55 contemporary-furnished rooms. You can upgrade to a sea-view room for a supplement, subject to availability.
- Heated indoor pool
- Live entertainment
- Table tennis
Santoña is a traditional fishing town that’s famous for its delicious anchovies – you’ll find them on the menu in almost every tapas bar. A three-kilometre ribbon of white sand runs along the front of the hotel, while inland there are wildlife-rich marshes and lush hills criss-crossed with hiking trails. The hotel borders a beach and a nature reserve – it’s an ideal location for birdwatchers and walkers, as well as those looking for a laid-back beach break with plenty of good food and wine.
“Saga is amidst a renewed drive to provide our guests with great quality, excellent value for money holidays, that offer something truly unique. We’ve chosen to partner with the family-run Juan de la Cosa, as they share our vision for welcoming guests as though they’re our friends and family. Both the hotel owners and the Saga host, Belén, take great pride in embracing the needs of Saga guests and providing the highest levels of service.
It may be clichéd to talk about looking for ‘authenticity’ in a holiday package to Spain, but we believe this is the real deal. Imagine finding a Spanish all-inclusive hotel, where you have the option of relaxing at the bar to eat tapas and ‘pintxos’ for lunch, as if eating at a street cafe in Bilbao’s old town. This authenticity, coupled with a warm welcome from the latest generation of a Spanish family, with over one hundred years’ hospitality experience, makes for a wonderful holiday.
Juan de la Cosa’s unique location is both on the beach and bordering a nature reserve, perfect for birdwatchers and walkers. If you’re in the mood for adventure, spend a day exploring the majestic Picos de Europa mountains; Basque capital of Bilbao; gastronomic San Sebastian; or the city of Santander, where the social scene gravitates around El Sardinero beach.
I’ve been lucky to live in this part of Spain, and the zest for life and friendliness of the locals is contagious. This, coupled with a strong social calendar of fiestas and saint’s days, provide a great excuse for celebrating.”