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Spanish tourism 'continues to grow'

Spanish holidays remain popular among foreign visitors, according to new figures.

A report by IPK, a German tourism consultancy, suggested that Spanish holidays were among the top picks for tourists from all over the world, Travel Weekly reports.

Overall, it found that global tourism numbers increased by over six per cent during 2007.

Some 790 million overnight trips were made by travellers during the year, with many opting for Spanish holidays.

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New rail link 'could boost Spanish coast'

People enjoying a Spanish holiday can access different areas of the country quicker now that a high-speed train service has started operating between Barcelona and Madrid.

James Dearsley of Atlas International suggested those staying in villas with pools in Spain will be able to travel "from the cities to the coast a little bit quicker".

He said people enjoying Spanish holidays are likely to see an increasing "shift of people from the cities to the coast" as a result of the new travel option.

"It's much like France in August; they all go to the sea," Mr Dearsley suggested.

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Spanish holidays still preferred to UK breaks

Whether it is a Spanish luxury holiday or a Spanish family holiday - Britons love travelling to Spain when they take a break.

According to the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (Alva) director Robin Broke trips abroad are still favoured by British holidaymakers.

Rather than staying in the UK, it seems couples, families and individuals are preferring Spanish holidays - or trips to other foreign destinations - to heading to the Cornish coast or attractions such as Blackpool Pleasure Beach.

Alva statistics show that during 2007, the northern coastal attraction received 5.

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Car hire firm introduces loyalty scheme

Car hire in Spain could become cheaper for members of a new loyalty scheme.

Economy Car Hire has launched a new scheme that aims to reward frequent users of its services, Travel Weekly reports.

The points-based system will apply to international car hire customers, who will earn two points per day off car hire in Spain and a number of other destinations abroad.

Recommending the service to someone else will mean the allocation of ten bonus points.

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New flights launch between Edinburgh and Alicante

People living near Edinburgh now have access to more flights to Spain following the introduction of a new flight from the international airport.

Low-cost carrier Ryanair last week flew its first flight on the new Edinburgh to Alicante route, Edinburgh's Evening News reported.

Those taking Spanish holiday can choose from four different services flying to Alicante every week.

It is anticipated that in the first year of its operation, some 60,000 additional passengers will take such a flight to Spain.

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Welsh airport sees rise in scheduled flights to Spain

More passengers are opting for scheduled trips from Cardiff International Airport when booking their Spanish holidays, it has been suggested.

Latest figures by the Welsh assembly government show increased uptake of scheduled flights between 2004 and 2006 from Cardiff, while there was a decline in chartered flights, the Western Mail reports.

Over half of passengers who used Cardiff's airport in 2006 - which is the latest year in the digest of air transport statistics - took a flight to Spain or the Canary Islands.

The Balearics, Benidorm and Costa del Sol - all popular locations for Britons taking a Spanish holiday - topped the most popular destinations.

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Spain ranks highly in tourism report

Luxury holidays in Spain have come under the spotlight as a report ranks the country in the top ten destinations most likely to tourist and travel development, according to the World Economic Forum.

The second annual Tourism Competitiveness Report examined economic development linked with environmental sustainability and graded countries according to how helpful conditions were for this kind of growth and change.

In all, it looked at the economies of 130 countries and was published through collaboration with several other organisations including Deloitte and the World Conservation Union.

A particular jewel in Spanish tourism's crown is La Manga Club, a luxury resort set in the countryside of Murcia between the Mediterranean and the Mar Menor seas, which enjoys a mild Med climate and warm seas.

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Easter OK, says the Church

Family holidays in Spain will not be forgone by holidaymakers taking full advantage of the public holidays that take place either side of Easter Sunday.

Schools across the UK are anticipating a rise in absences as some have decided not to match their term holiday to the religious holiday due to the early arrival of the spring religious festival.

Children returning from their holiday in Spain will then find themselves with another fortnight off - this time the official school holiday.

The Church of England (CoE) has previously opposed proposals to sever the link between Easter and the spring school holiday through concerns that this would weaken the Christian ethos of a national holiday.

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Enjoy diving at La Manga

Try something different during your holiday in Spain, an environment perfect for fun - adventure diving at La Manga Club.

Located in Murcia, southern Spain, Adventure Divers is part of the luxury holiday in Spain resort and is operated by experienced and qualified instructors.

Diver training is offered for beginners and those with more experience and includes refresher and children's courses right up to dive master level.

Adventure Divers can also escort experienced clients to any one of a number of local recommended dive sites; scuba equipment for divers who are qualified is available for hire too.

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MasterChef winner dreams of restaurant in Spain

The winner of BBC2 cookery programme MasterChef once dreamt of an extended Spanish holiday during which time he would open up his own restaurant, reports have revealed.

James Nathan, who previously worked in the legal profession, recently beat rival cooks Jonny Stevenson and Emily Ludolf in the final show to take the title.

Prior to his appearance on MasterChef, Mr Nathan revealed that he had purchased a restaurant in a scenic spot in the popular Spanish holiday region of Andalucia, the Press Association reports.

"Prior to appearing on the programme James bought a building in Spain with the ambition of turning it into a restaurant, but he was unsuccessful.

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