Expat shares ‘worst part’ of living in Spain ‘without a doubt’ – ‘it’s a cultural thing’

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Maddie is a British expat who moved to Spain during the pandemic after she found a job as a teacher in the Valencia region, by Costa Blanca.

After living in Spain for nearly two years, Maddie has shared what life in the country is really like.

The expat named her favourite parts: “The outdoors lifestyle, the weather, the culture, the hiking, the ancient monuments and the wonderful roads – never ever get into a traffic hold up.”

She added: “Falling asleep to the sound of the waves, the fantastic food and wine and the smiley faces of the people.

“Huge skies and wonderful sunsets, nearness and good connections to the UK if I want to see family and friends.”

Maddie added: “The vibrant and old cities, the importance of family and looking after each other, my sunroom and growing cacti.”

She also said she loves “exploring” Spain and the country’s safety, mainly “outside major cities”.

Maddie also adores Spanish “shoes and boots! I’ve bought quite a few pairs…”

However, not everything is perfect in Spain and there are many things she doesn’t particularly enjoy.

Maddie said: “Officialdom is the worst without a doubt.”

She added: “The language barrier (that is my fault though), some racism, and the graffiti in cities.”

The expat also said she “can’t get any clothes to fit “.

“I feel huge and I’m a size 12.”

She explained she doesn’t like “shops in general”.

“The Spanish love their fake leather, sparkles and tight, tight leopard prints.

“It’s either that or clothes for a lady of 80 plus. Nothing in between.”

Maddie also said she finds it strange how all the stores are closed on Sundays.

Where should you go on your next holiday?

Now that the world has opened up again it’s time to pack those suitcases and head off on a well-deserved adventure. Where should you be jetting off to? Take our quiz and find out.


With endless culture, gorgeous beaches and weather to die for, Greece is a great choice both for romantic getaways and family trips. Wander the historical streets of Athens and Thessaloniki or head to an island to soak up the sun – the choice is yours.


It may be far away but it’s definitely worth the trip. Japan has sprawling metropolises, stunning scenery, and a rich history and culture to boot. Check out the cities of Kyoto and Tokyo and make sure to get your fill of their world-famous cuisine while you’re in town


Hop across the pond and experience an array of cultures, climates, cuisines and more. You can leave the phrasebook at home and get truly immersed in everything that this sprawling nation has to offer, from the Grand Canyon to the Statue of Liberty


With some of the best food around and boasting the world’s most romantic city, France is a great choice if you’re in a hurry. Be in its glorious capital in just hours, grab a pain au chocolat and practice your language skills while wandering along the banks of the Seine


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A little off the beaten track, Morocco boasts stunning architecture, winding street markets to get lost in, and beautiful landscapes. Soak up the sun in Marrakech or head to Chefchaouen for one of the most unique experiences a holiday-maker can have

The Caribbean

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India is well worth a visit if you have some time to spare. With an array of different cultures coexisting in this vast and vibrant nation, as well as gorgeous food to be enjoyed at every turn, you’ll find yourself immersed in the experience. Take a trip to the Taj Mahal for that jaw drop moment

Swiss Alps

If snow sports are your thing, then this mountainous region is perfect for you. Venture down the powdered slopes and warm your hands at the après-ski afterward. Perfect for a group of friends, a romantic trip, or even some time with the kids – if they can stand the cold!

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“Everything is shut on a Sunday – and I mean everything. It’s the family day – which is great if you have family here, I don’t!”

Maddie continued: “No second-hand shops unless it’s a really expat area on the Costas.

“It’s a cultural thing, Spaniards think it’s shameful having anything second-hand.

“I miss them as I’ve had to buy furniture etc and it’s all the same standard stuff!”

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