Renting apartments in Spain for wintering

We are two Canadians that are looking at cheap alternatives for staying in Spain for the winter of 2013. Rentals are reasonable....Has anyone rented long term in Spain and where would you suggest. Been there before? We are thinking Madrid, Seville, or Toledo, but are open to inexpensive alternatives. We have travelled throughout Europe and are now full filling a dream of spending winter in Spain rather than Northern Ontario, Canada. Any suggestions, websites you may have had success with or thoughts are very appreciated. Angela
Bracebridge, Ontario, Canada

Posted by pat
victoria, Canada
8729 posts

You mean for 3 months of winter right, since you can't stay longer without applying for special long stay visa. Also you do realize it won't be really warm at all , but likely better then Ontario I guess. lol
If you want warm you will have to go further south.

Posted by Roberto
Fremont, CA, USA
5412 posts

If you are looking for milder winters, Sevilla is a better choice than Toledo and Madrid. As any Madrileno can tell you, Madrid has "nueve meses de invierno y tres meses de infierno" (nine months of winter and three months of hell)? If you can find a spot on the coast on the Costa del Sol, even better (Nerja, maybe? If you don't mind smaller towns).

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
21495 posts

Angela, The first point to mention is that you'll have to ensure that your stay doesn't exceed 90-days, in accordance with the terms of the Schengen Accord which governs length of stay for tourists. You might find it helpful to speak with a Travel Agent, as they often have listings for long-stay vacations. One location that seems to be popular in Spain is Malaga, which has average daytime temperatures of about 17C in the winter. The Algarve region of Portugal is also popular. There's a lot of information available on the internet. You might have a look at THIS website or THIS website for some examples. Happy travels!

Posted by courtney
London, UK
68 posts

if you are looking for a place to stay look on and also i am not encouraging this in any way but spain is one of the most relaxed places in regards to overstaying a visa. In total you are able to stay 180 days out of the year but would have to leave after 90 and enter again.

Posted by Nancy
Bloomington, IL, USA
8340 posts

To clarify Courtney's point, you can stay 180 days out of a year, technically, but it is not as simple as leaving after 90 days and coming back. If you stay 90 days, you must leave for 90 days before you can come back. It's not as simple as a border run for a day or two. If you stay 90, then leave for 90, you can then come back for another 90.

Posted by David
Florence, AL, USA
2746 posts

My nice has a rental condo that's very nice, west of Gilbraltor. Try contacting for information. The property is located outside Faro, Portugal in the Algarve Region. It's an oceanfront modern 2 bedroom property, and she had it listed on the internet with pictures, etc. when we were in London 4/12. Regina lives in London, and is in Portugal until 1/5/13. I don't know if she has her laptop with her.

Posted by Lou
San Jose, California, U.S.A.
117 posts

Angela, I have a friend who has 2 bedroom apartment in Fuengirola, Costa del Sol. The city is right on the Med and lies halfway between Malaga and Marbella. Fifteen minutes by bus and halfway up a mountain is the white village of Mijas, a delightful place where a friend and I took horse drawn carriage ride. The view of the sea below and up and down the coast are fabulous. The beach promenade at Fuengirola is over a mile long. Of course, the beach is a little irrelevant in the winter but the port has a Sunday flea market and many restaurants. My friend, Roger Cummiskey, is an Irish expat living in Fuengirola. Here is web site

Posted by Dennis
Redmond, WA
292 posts

You can get a longer visa at the Spanish consulate nearest you. They're not difficult to obtain if you're retired. If you're not there's a few more hoops, but not difficult. We retire next year and will bhe spending 6 months each winter in Sevilla, and have already seen the consulate in San Francisco. Just makie sure you take all the required documentation. Have a great time. And, heed the reports on the winter weather - go south!

Posted by Angela
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
19 posts

Thank you everyone for your valuable information and thoughts. We are definately opened to any other suggestions. Angela

Posted by Brad
Gainesville, VA
7883 posts

I would encourage you to go south. Madrid and Toledo are likely to be cold, windy and even snowy - so not nearly as comfortable as you would think Spain might be. We pretty much froze everywhere this April - but that was supposed to be unusual. I really liked the Costa de la Luz because it's not as crowded as other coasts in Spain, Cadiz is one of the oldest cities in Europe, but I'm not sure the weather would be very nice in winter. Probably Seville or nearby towns like Arcos or Jerez, even Cordoba, might be good choices.

Posted by John
Westlake, TX, USA
20 posts

We are in Seville right now having toured around a bit. As a New Englander I would choose Seville for the winter. It's warm enough here so that you really can sit outside at night. If you want something a bit more rural then look at Ronda. I liked Arcos, but I think that it would be too quiet for me.

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3252 posts

If you are set on Spain, then definitely as far south as possible, or maybe for something a bit cheaper look at the southern coast of Portugal. If you just want someplace nice to get out of your terrible winters look at Guatemala. It is so cheap and a wonderful culture and the weather in the winter is beautiful. There is Antigua, a beautiful colonial city, Lake Atitilan, a gorgeous lake that rivals the Lake of Constance and the Mayan ruins of Tikal in the jungle. There is a guest house I have stayed in that is under $200 a week and includes 3 beautiful meals a day... only a few blocks off the square, and is lovely. Message me if you want more info. Otherwise, you will love Spain, it will just be a bit cool.