When traveling by van, it can be a chore to find a scenic parking spot. We know firsthand how hard it can be. However, northern Spain is in a completely different league when it comes to wild camping. The dramatic coastline, coupled with the small-town charm that can be found in every village is special and unique to this region. Beautiful wild camping spots are numerous, but we firmly believe this one may be the best!
You can find this spot situated between the two larger towns of Santander and Gijon. This spot near Pechón is located a mere 2-minute walk from Arnio beach. A unique beach with the sand backed up behind a small rocky headland forming two shorelines in a hammer-head formation. It consists of numerous small car parks (approx 4) with room for about 5 vans per spot. We opted to stay in the car park slightly further from the beach, but with access to a stunning board walked viewpoint.
39594, Cantabria, Spain
Beach Shower available
signal / 4G
Good 4G and signal.
What makes this wild camping spot the best in northern Spain?
This question can be answered with simply a photograph. This wild camping spot in northern Spain is located by the most striking beach we have seen in the 3 (almost 4) months that we have been traveling around Spain.
The sand stretches out far and wide and is perfectly golden and fine. The ideal place to sunbathing, play beach games, or make sandcastles.
The aqua-blue water surrounding this sandbank is crystal clear. The seabed is a very gradual decline, meaning that the water is relatively shallow. Perfect for children discovering the sea.
The sheltered sandy bays are also perfect for SUPs or kayaks as the water is calm and clear.
This spot is also home to a beach shower. So if you don’t have a shower in your van, or are just looking to conserve some water, this spot is perfect for you!
Not only is the beach spectacular, but the surrounding area is also stunning. It is filled with lush greenery and rolling hills, begging to be explored. So if you’ve spent enough time at the beach (impossible) then why not discover the surrounding area?
There are many walking trails around this area for all ability levels. To find out more, click here.
The drawbacks of this wild camping spot
At first glance, this parking spot is perfect. Its proximity to the beach and year-round great weather make it a no-brainer. However, there are a few unfortunate drawbacks to this wild camping spot.
First and foremost. This spot is not available from the 15th of June – the 15th of September. This is to restrict large crowds on this unspoiled beach during peak season.
Secondly, there are no facilities here. There are no bins, water source, or toilets. To fully enjoy this wild camping spot near Pechón, your vehicle must be self-contained. Furthermore, this spot is quite secluded. There are no shops within walking distance, so make sure you stock up prior to arriving.
Unfortunately the car parks are not the most level, so you may benefit from using chocks for a more comfortable night’s sleep. We did not utilise chocks, and slept soundly, but if you are more sensitive to slopes, you may not be comfortable here. Of the 4 car parks located here, we found the ones closer to the beach to be slightly flatter.
Finally, the roads leading to this spot are quite narrow. We are traveling in a standard 6m Citroen Relay campervan conversion and found it to be a little scary on the smaller roads. This is not to say a larger vehicle wouldn’t fit through. There was one person in a larger motorhome (approx. 7-8m). However, we wouldn’t have felt confident driving here in a bigger vehicle.
This area is without a doubt one of the top 3 places we have stayed in Spain. Its jaw-dropping landscape coupled with the fact that it feels undiscovered by the masses make it truly special. Its tropical island atmosphere makes you feel detached from the real world and lets you unwind and connect with your surroundings.
If you like this spot and want to discover another local spot, equally as beautiful, why not check out the post below?
Or perhaps you are looking for another showstopping spot to stay in whilst visiting Spain? Check out the one below. The Bardenas Reales is a semi-desert landscape that is somewhat reminiscent of a miniature grand canyon and can be found in Northern Spain in the Navarra region.
Furthermore, f you have any questions regarding where to wild camp in Miengo/Santander…or Spain in general do not hesitate to comment down below.