Cantabria is autonomous community with Santander as its capital city. Cantabria is the richest region in the world for archaeological sites from the Upper Paleolithic period, although the first signs of human occupation date from the Lower Paleolithic. Cantabria belongs to Green Spain, the name given to the strip of land between the Bay of Biscay and the Cantabrian Mountains.
Climate: Cantabria has a humid oceanic climate, with warm summers and mild winters. The mountainous relief of Cantabria has a dominant effect on local microclimate in Cantabria. The average high temp is 32°C in the month of July and average low temp is 2.7°C in the month of January.
Geography: Cantabria is bordered on the east by the Basque Autonomous Community (province of Biscay), on the south by Castile and Leon (provinces of León, Palencia and Burgos), on the west by the Principality of Asturias, and on the north by the Cantabrian Sea (Bay of Biscay).
History: The first written accounts of Cantabria come in 200BC. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the Cantabri regained independence during the Visigoths reign until 714, when the Muslim Moors invaded the area. The Moors controlled the majority of the Iberian peninsula, apart from the Cantabrian coast and its mountains. In the 12th Century, Cantabria saw a number of monasteries built as Christian influence began to grow. The major towns in the region, Santander, Laredo, Castro Urdiales and San Vicente de la Barquera had some of the most important shipyards in the world. In 1983 Cantabria became an autonomous region giving it some administrative and political powers separate from Spain’s national government.
Mountains: The Cantabrian Mountains to the south, Picos de Europa to the southwest, and the Bay of Biscay to the north, make up the natural boundaries of Cantabria as well as its most remarkable geographical peculiarities. The mountain range is also broken perpendicularly by river valleys. This, as a whole, forms a landscape of mountains and hills that lose height gradually from south to north, with short but fast-flowing rivers squeezed into them. The mountains are mostly made of limestone with karst topography, and occupy most of Cantabria's area.
Rivers: River valleys are a characteristic feature of inland Cantabrian landscape. Those same rivers that lend the region its peculiar geography of valleys orientated from south to north also determine the shape of the coastline. Only the river Ebro, that rises in springs at Fontibre , doesn't flow into the Bay of Biscay, but into the Mediterranean Sea. The Ebro has a higher volume of water in summer than in winter. The rivers of Cantabria are short and rapid, descending steeply because the sea is so close to their source in the Cantabrian Mountains. They flow perpendicular to the coastline, except for the Ebro. They also generally flow year round due to constant rainfall.
Beaches: In the coast of Cantabria there are more than 60 different beaches. You could visit a different one each day for two months without repeating. Large, small, urban, rural, quietly enclosed or open to the Cantabrian Sea: all of them have fine white sand, crystal clear water and a certain something. Blue flags are synonymous with clean safe beaches. Brazomar Beach is a magnificent beach is protected by a wonderful seafront promenade. Salve Beach in Laredo is the longest and most heavily visited sandy beach on the whole of the Cantabrian coast.
Capital city: The port city of Santander is the capital of the autonomous community and historical region of Cantabria. The city remains being a major northern Spain academic and tourist enclave . Santander’s tourism comes mainly from neighboring regions. The growth of port activity, increased value-added traffic for storage requiring a lot of already scarce ground, and insufficient depth for some types of ships, is forcing the Port Authority to consider the long-term construction of a port outside the bay. Santander is working to adapt the municipality to the law of large cities and thus decentralise power in several districts. In the Roman Empire, the city was known as Portus Victoriae Iuliobrigensium.
Cuisine: The cuisine of Cantabria uses both produce from the sea and produce from the mountains in its dishes. Nata de Cantabria is a well-known creamy cheese from this province, often used in traditional Cantabrian dishes. Cantabria’s most famous alcoholic drink is Orujo, a digestif liquor made from pomace, which is basically the bits of the grape that are left over after pressing. . Milk is frequently used in cooking here too as in the dish Arroz a la Santanderina, a rice-based local speciality made with ham and milk. The anchovies from Santona are highly regarded throughout Spain.
Economy: The service sector employs 63.8% of the active population and is increasing, given that large concentrations of the population live in the urban centers and the importance that tourism has acquired in the recent years. The unemployment rate in Cantabria is 19.3%, compared to 24.47% in Spain. Primary Industry are cattle farming, traditional dairy farming, and meat production; agriculture, especially corn, potatoes, vegetables, and roughage; maritime fishing; and the mining of zinc and quarries. Secondary industry are food service, paper production, industrial groups and transport, etc.
Regions in Spain