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Hidden Spain 'contains bears'

Britons with a keen sense of adventure opting for a Spanish holiday may find themselves rubbing shoulders with bears, if they travel to the Costa Verde in Asturias.

The Independent reports that the Costa Verde is a "relatively" unexplored region of north-west Spain.

Holidaymakers can enjoy quiet family beach holidays in Spain in the "hub of eco-friendly tourism".

Expect to see Celtic traditions and a large population of western European bears, the publication reports.

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Mushroom man loses argument

Brits taking flights to Alicante who then venture into the countryside should learn the lesson of what not to eat from a local mushroom collector who recently went to extreme lengths to win an argument and ended up in hospital.

Typically Spanish reports that Jose Manuel Hidalgo got into a disagreement with locals in regards to the lethality of wild mushrooms, as he displayed his recently collected mushrooms at a village open day in Fuentes de Leon.

He argued that it was permissible to eat 20 grams of poisonous mushrooms without suffering fatal consequences, a claim disputed by fellow locals and posters on the walls.

Mr Hidalgo proceeded to take bites out of the fungi before displaying symptoms of alcohol inebriation.

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Canary Islands "brace for revellers"

Thousands of holidaymakers are expected to arrive in the Canary Islands in the coming days as the archipelago gears up for its annual February carnival.

Pre-Lentern celebrations take place across the islands at this time of year and earthtimes reports that the island's largest towns are "bracing themselves" for an influx of partygoers.

In particular, it is anticipated that Tenerife, the biggest Spanish holiday island, will see the lion's share of the tourism and celebrations.

The Spanish tourism office in Munich anticipates that Santa Cruz and Puerto de la Cruz on Tenerife will see several thousand tourists arrive for the celebrations which last from January 30th until February 10th.

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Spain chooses Travel Spike

The Spanish tourist office alongside Portugal has selected to partner with Travel Spike in a bid to develop their North American website.

It is hoped that the site will act as a "one-stop resource" for the education of travellers wishing to enjoy Spanish holidays as well as holidays in Portugal.

Travel Spike has created a "virtual journey" mini-game called Exploria which allows potential travellers to capture the "essence" of Spain and Portugal.

"We selected Travel Spike to be our interactive agency and partner because their team has a substantial amount of travel industry and online experience," Javier Pinanes, director of the tourist office of Spain commented.

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Spain is 'one of world's top holiday destinations'

Further evidence of the popularity of Spanish holidays has been revealed thanks to figures from the Madrid-based World Tourism Organisation (WTO).

According to the Spanish-based body, the number of tourists around the world reached a record level in 2007.

The WTO reports that the number of travellers exploring foreign regions hit 898 million last year, a rise of 6.2 per cent compared to the figure in 2006.

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Tips for cheaper Spanish holiday

Britons have been offered advice on how to get the most for their money when booking a trip abroad.

Those taking Spanish holidays could save money by following a series of tips provided by the Telegraph, which notes that the guidelines are indicative rather than precise.

In order to save up to 50 per cent on a holiday, the publication suggests travelling on a week long break as opposed to a two-week holiday.

Those considering family holidays in Spain should consider taking flights to Murcia during the May half term rather than during the peak summer holiday period when holidays can be more expensive.

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Brits book flights to Murcia on net

There has been a rise in the number of Britons purchasing Spanish holidays and flights to Murcia on the internet, it has been revealed.

According to the Nielson Company, over 85 per cent of people use the internet to make goods and services purchases, representing a 40 per cent in the past two years.

Meanwhile, one of the most popular purchased goods on the internet is airline tickets, accounting for 24 per cent of online purchases.

"The internet is no longer a niche technology - it is mass media and an utterly integral part of modern life.

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Odd souvenirs recovered at airport

Straw donkeys, novelty T-shirts, perfume and wines are all items that are often brought back to the UK as souvenirs from Spanish holidays, however, it has been revealed that holidaymakers travelling through the UK's Aberdeen Airport have attempted to bring some unusual items with them.

Customs officials at the hub have been recounting the weird and wonderful - and occasionally frightening - goods that travellers have recently tried to get through security channels.

Animals are a popular keep sake, with one official discovered a dead tiger in a suitcase, while another member of staff was baffled by a passenger trying to take a tarantula on a plane.

The same cheeky traveller tried to smuggle another pet in a shoe box who.

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Alicia Keys to sing in Madrid

Brits taking Spanish holidays to Madrid this March could choose to see soul singer Alicia Keys in concert.

The US R&B singer shot to fame with her debut album Songs in A Minor and, in particular, the single Fallin'.

Other hit songs for the artist have included A Woman's Worth, My Boo - a duet with Usher - Diary and Karma. Also, Keys has worked with top names Christina Aguilera, Mary J Blige and Jamie Foxx.

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Caldereros Fiesta in San Sebastian

Those on Spanish holidays within easy reach of San Sebastian should pay a visit to the region this weekend for the Caldereros Fiesta.

Celebrating the Hungarian gypsies who used to pass through San Sebastian in the olden days, locals dress up in traditional gypsy clothing and mimic the tinkers in their method of advertising their services.

Holidaymakers too can get into the spirit of things by banging hammers against pots and pans or simply by being somewhat raucous.

According to Entertainment in Spain, the festival is "quite an event", while the Tinkers' Parade which is used to announce the carnival is "peculiar".

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