Andalucia

Tourism and the Spanish smoking ban

A survey of Skyscanner shows that the new anti-smoking law in Spain could change in a 45% of smoking tourists their intention to travel to Spain.

An international survey by the flight search engine Skyscanner indicates that 45 percent of tourists smokers may be less willing to travel to Spain for holidays after the adoption of the law banning smoking in bars and restaurants.

However, 61% of nonsmokers reported that, thanks to the new law, they were more likely to choose Spain for their holidays and to be comfortable in bars and restaurants without being bothered by the smoke.

Also 38% of smokers felt that the new law would not influence their decision to travel to Spain, although they would have to accept not being able to smoke indoors. The terraces equipped to smoke can be a good solution for them.

13% of respondents, smokers and nonsmokers, said the new law does not bother them and, of course, will not affect their decision to travel to Spain.

A study shows that the Andalusians are the best hosts in Spain

The Andalusians are the best hosts of Spain, according to the latest survey by MuchoViaje.com, and are moreover “the most partying and the friendliest”.

The portal for leisure travel bookings has completed this study among more than 700 people from all over Spain. Thus, 34 percent of respondents believe that the Andalusians are the most hospitable, followed by the Canaries, with 10 percent of votes and the Asturian and Galician, both with nine percent.

56 percent of respondents considered that the Andalusians are “the most partying by nature.” Besides the fun,  27 percent considered that the inhabitants of Andalucia are also characterized by their kindness and good education. In this classification the Andalusians are also the most generous, according to 35 percent of the participants in the study.

New strict smoking ban in Spain from January

Tobacco law

Since the beginning of January came into operation a new smoking ban in Spain.
So far, we knew Spain as a very permissive country in many ways, which has now introduced one of the toughest laws in Europe, on the one hand warmly welcomed among non-smokers and on the other side heavily criticized by the smokers.

What should you observe as a smoker when coming to the Costa del Sol?

From now on, smoking is banned in closed public spaces such bars, restaurants, nightclubs, casinos, airports and outdoor spaces like children playgrounds, school and hospital grounds. You still can smoke in the terraces though (and Malaga has plenty of them). Hotels in Malaga may still reserve 30% of their rooms for smokers.

Fines for breaking the anti-smoking law begin at 30 Euros (£25) and can rise to a maximum of 600,000 Euros (£513,800). Whereas until the application of this new law bar owners in Spain  were still allowed to choose whether to permit smoking in their premises, this law applies now without exception.

The reactions are sometimes very entertaining and even inventive. A restaurant in Marbella, for example, publicly refused to comply and there the customers may continue to smoke; the owner might face a large fine, but he is determined to “fight for his right”. Others were more imaginative and have officially declared a “smoking club” for “members” such as a Café in northern Spain. As an anecdote, this cafe counted on the first day already 200 members.

The natural areas in Andalusia

Some 29,000 people participated in 2009 in the program of visits to natural areas in Andalusia that six years ago was started by the Ministry of Environment of the Junta de Andalucía in 28 protected areas, with the goal of connecting citizens with the natural environment of the community, which houses one of the most important diversity of ecosystems, flora and fauna in Europe.

This initiative also aims, besides enhancing the enjoyment of nature in a funny and enjoyable way, to foster critical thinking in relation to human processes that affect the environment.

With this concept are presented the natural Parks in Andalusia, with the aim of promoting respectful sports tourism with the environment in which it develops.

This offer combine leisure and adventure for groups and individuals and allows people to know the natural environment in a different and at the time safe way, by kayak, equestrian and hiking routes, among other possibilities.

Another objective of the program “Visits to natural spaces” is combining the development with environmental conservation as a future investment, both for the population of natural areas and their visitors. In this sense, open days consist of free activities suitable for all audiences which show the most relevant aspects of a natural area.

Only in the province of Malaga there are 5 protected natural spaces and close by, in Granada, the Sierra Nevada National Park.

In the photo are shown the “Green rails” in Seville.

Strong rainfalls in Andalucia

The storm affecting the entire Peninsula has come down in Malaga in form of torrential rain with flooding in basements, streets and garages in Malaga city and neighboring villages, with 35 liters per square meter and which required intervention of police and fire brigade, although without any particularly serious incidents.

As well has been affected the national road N-340 as the heavy rains produced a landslide of rocks and earth.

The state meteorological agency stipulates that the province will be in yellow alert until midday this Thursday, with snowfall from 600 to 800 meters.

Since yesterday night there have been continuous strong rainfalls in several points of the province. Thus have been registered 62, 4 liters per square meters in Estepona and 53 liters in Fuengirola.

The forecast for this weekend awaits a strong decrease of temperatures and icy northern winds, with minimum temperatures of 2ºC in the capital and until -3ºC in the interior (Ronda). The snowline sinks to 500 meters, with possibility of precipitation even in areas where this phenomenon is little frequent. The highest temperatures are around 12ºC along the littoral and around 7ºC in the interior around Ronda and Antequera.

From Saturday onwards are expected once more remarkable rainfalls, which, in principle, remain on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

From today until Friday the 8th of January will be active the orange alert due to snowfall in the provinces of Jaén, Granada and Almería with precipitations up to 20 centimeters.