Driving To Spain From UK – Our Tips & Routes

These days when you concentrate on travelling overseas, your head instantly jumps to flying there.

The very first thing you take into account is respected flight firms that don’t cost a bomb and completely different flight schedules that might assist you to get pleasure from as a lot time as attainable abroad.

However one mode of transport that you just may not instantly take into account is driving. 

Driving in international nations can appear barely daunting at first, however when you concentrate on all of the unbelievable views it is possible for you to to get pleasure from, that you just wouldn’t see on a aircraft, it turns into an apparent selection. 

*Please observe this text was written pre Covid occasions so earlier than planning your journey please be sure to verify present restrictions round journey and Covid-19.

Probably the most well-liked vacation locations for folks travelling from the UK is Spain, and understandably so.

Spain may appear to be an extended distance from the UK, however the drive is definitely fairly simple, and it means that you can see all the attractive sights that you’d have in any other case missed out on. 

On this information, we’ll be having a look at among the greatest routes from the UK to Spain and loads of ideas to make sure that your journey goes easily.

Leaving the UK

The primary a part of your drive from the UK to Spain would require you to depart the island that we name residence.

There are a few ways in which you are able to do this, so let’s take a look at among the choices you will have for crossing the channel. 

Dover to Calais

Maybe probably the most well-known technique to journey from the UK to mainland Europe is by way of a ferry crossing from Dover to Calais.

It has impressed many a music and is an effective way to cross the channel as through the summer time months as much as 40 crossings of the channel are scheduled a day. 

Whereas it isn’t the quickest path to France, it’s nonetheless pretty brief because it solely takes one hour and a half, which is simply sufficient time so that you can seize a chew to eat earlier than you come back to your spot behind the steering wheel.

This is likely one of the cheaper methods to cross the channel, and a very good selection in case you are attempting to save lots of your pennies for while you get to Spain.

It may be a bit time-consuming and does require ready round whereas the workers controlling the ferry navigate getting all the required automobiles and vans aboard.

However it’s a straightforward route and an incredible selection if you need to have the ability to loosen up as you cross the channel. 

Portsmouth to Caen

If you wish to cross the border by way of ferry, however fancy a change from the white cliffs of Dover, you possibly can as an alternative cross the ferry from Portsmouth to Caen.

This can be a nice selection should you reside within the South East of England as it is going to require much less time travelling right here within the UK. However be warned, the ferry crossing from Portsmouth to Caen is costlier than the crossing from Dover to Calais. 

This level of crossing is a pleasing change from the most well-liked crossing level, nonetheless, it’s harder to get a spot on this crossing.

Compared to the 40 crossings made between Dover and Calais a day, the ferry crossing from Portsmouth to Caen solely crosses 3 times a day. As soon as within the evening and twice through the day.

So while you select between Dover and Portsmouth, it’s best to take into account the time of the day that you just wish to journey and whether or not or not the Portsmouth crossing can do that for you. 


The subsequent selection you will have is by far the quickest technique to cross the channel from England to France, and that’s, after all, the Eurotunnel.

Formally referred to as ‘Eurotunnel Le Shuttle’ this route is the quickest technique to get throughout the channel because it takes solely 35 minutes to get from Folkestone in England to Calais in France. 

This route does require you utilizing the tunnel that travels under the physique of water that makes up the English Channel, so it may not be the only option in case you are claustrophobic.

However it’s the quickest technique to get throughout and is a good selection should you don’t need the trouble of attempting to load your automobile onto a ferry. 

It’s a nice selection in case you are taking your canine on the journey with you, or you probably have younger kids who’re prone to develop bored through the crossing.

However be warned, it may possibly get very heat through the journey by the tunnel, so sporting layers is vital should you select this feature. 

A Ferry to Spain

Alternatively, chances are you’ll select to chop out France fully and as an alternative take a ferry on to the Spanish border.

That is maybe the only technique to get from the UK to Spain if you wish to drive when you attain Spain, however be warned because it does take so much longer than the ferry to France. 

You have got a couple of choices for crossing to Spain, some ferries run from Portsmouth and others run from Plymouth they usually primarily take you to Bilbao or Santander in Spain.

This may be an costly selection, and understandably so while you realise that this technique of crossing the channel takes roughly 24 hours to do.

Few folks select this technique of crossing because the 24 hours journey can appear off-putting, however it’s a well-liked selection amongst those that wish to restrict their driving to only the UK and Spain.

Equally, this can be a well-liked technique with those that would fairly take it gradual and attain Spain after they get there, fairly than worrying in regards to the time that it takes. 

Different Methods to Cross

Whereas now we have already coated the primary crossing choices that you’ve from the UK to mainland Europe, there are some extra obscure decisions you may make.

These decisions are nice if you wish to make your journey to Europe an journey, and are pleased to journey the street much less travelled.

However keep in mind that should you select considered one of these choices you’ll have to be versatile as they run a lot much less regularly than the crossings at Dover and Portsmouth. 

Throughout the border of the South of England, you’ll find a number of smaller cities which run ferry crossings from their city to France. These cities embrace Poole, Newhaven, and Folkestone (the place the Eurotunnel will be discovered).

From these cities, you’ll typically end up getting into France in someplace apart from Calais, in smaller cities together with Dunkirk, Le Havre, and St Malo. Whereas it’s a must to be versatile should you select considered one of these choices, it may be an effective way to get a very good deal.

So if you wish to journey to Spain on a finances, it’s best to take into account selecting the street much less travelled. 

Driving by France

Lots of people select to drive in France, and it’s simple to know while you take a look at the superb situations of the roads out in France.

The roads in France additionally journey by some stunning areas, guaranteeing a scenic route whichever manner you go.

However be warned, driving in France is pricey, particularly in case you are doing so in a caravan or motorhome

Additionally, you will discover that there are sometimes disruptions which you’ll face through the journey by the nation as a consequence of political tensions. 

Listed below are some fast ideas for driving in France:

  • Watch your pace as there was a rise in rushing fines issued to British drivers in France. 
  • Get an Digital Toll Go to keep away from manually paying the tolls at each gate. 
  • Contemplate the climate, snow chains are a authorized requirement in France for snowy climate. 
  • The drink driving legal guidelines in France are a lot stricter than the UK so keep in mind this should you take into account a glass of wine with meals. 
  • You will want a minimum of 6 months of validity left in your passport to drive by France.

The Greatest Routes for…

With the following pointers in thoughts, let’s check out among the greatest routes for driving from France to Spain.

We have now given you three choices which have 3 predominant influences: worth, views and pace. 


First, let’s check out the very best route with value in thoughts. As this route retains value because the precedence, you’ll discover that it’ll take barely longer than different routes.

That is primarily as a result of this route is designed with completely no tolls in order that the cash you’re paying to drive to Spain is restricted to gasoline. 

This route travels down the left-hand aspect of the nation and lots of that is made up of nation roads fairly than the twin carriageway which you may count on.

It depends closely on the A28 and N10 toll-free roads to maintain prices down, and due to this, there’s a good likelihood that you’ll encounter visitors on the journey.

Lots of people select this route to maintain prices down and as a consequence of this common visitors jams as you close to the bigger cities is frequent. On paper, this journey ought to take 15 hours, however as a consequence of visitors, you have to be ready for this to take longer. 

This journey will take you from Rouen to Chartres to Poitiers to Bordeaux to the Spanish border space of Irun. From there you possibly can then start your journey to the world of Spain you want to go to. 


Subsequent, let’s check out the very best route if you wish to encounter stunning views whilst you drive.

This route isn’t boring and it’ll take you thru a few of France’s most stunning cities earlier than heading South after which throughout to Spain. 

This journey begins with you travelling from wherever you crossed into France throughout to Paris. Paris is gorgeous, and if you wish to embrace some French areas in your Spanish vacation, Paris is a should.

You solely have to look at a TV present or movie based mostly in France to see how daunting the prospect of driving by Paris will be. However don’t fear, there are many locations on the outskirts the place you possibly can cease off in your journey. 

From there, this route takes you to Orleans which was as soon as residence of Joan of Arc and south by the attractive French countryside and small villages together with Clermont-Ferrand, Millau and Beziers.

The final place you’ll go to in France on this route is Perpignan which lies not removed from the Spanish border. From there you possibly can simply journey to Barcelona and start your journey by Spain. 


Lastly, let’s check out the very best route by France to Spain if pace is your precedence.

For some folks the views and price don’t matter, they merely wish to attain their last vacation spot in Spain as quickly as attainable.

With pace in thoughts, the quickest path to get to Spain from France is down the Western coast. This ensures that you just miss the mountainous terrain of central France, and solely use the roads which can be simple to journey. 

This route is by far the quickest, and it ensures that you would be able to make your entire journey by France while not having to cease at any level if a couple of particular person can take to the steering wheel.

This journey requires you to journey from the place that you just entered France throughout to Rouen.

From there you possibly can journey all the way down to Le Mans, by Excursions, and down previous the French metropolis of Bordeaux.

From there you possibly can simply cross the Spanish border into the Irun space of Spain earlier than travelling onto the situation you select in Spain.

With out visitors, it is possible for you to to make this journey by France into Spain in simply 10 hours. 

Driving by Spain

When you enter Spain, you will have reached your vacation spot! In the identical manner that French roads are nice to drive on, Spanish roads are additionally often properly maintained which ought to make your journey a breeze. 

The very best roads in Spain will be discovered within the centre of the nation, however even the roads on the coast are completely protected to journey on.

Driving in Spain is extremely relaxed, and you’ll typically discover that you’re the one automobile on the street which is an enormous change from among the visitors you’ll encounter when driving by France.

The roads in Spain are properly networked, and you’ll find that it is vitally simple to get to the world of Spain that you just plan on staying in.

Gas in Spain is often cheaper than each the UK and France, and the price of tolls is way much less expensive. So travelling in Spain is straightforward. 

Listed below are some ideas for driving in Spain:

  • It’s essential to at all times carry your driving license when driving. 
  • You will want a inexperienced card to show that you just and your automobile are ensured. 
  • Test the protection necessities for driving in Spain and what you have to to fulfill these. 
  • All screens should be stored out of the view of the driving force (excluding sat navs). 
  • There is no such thing as a have to keep away from tolls as they’re at all times fairly priced.


Briefly, if you wish to journey from the UK to Spain, you will have plenty of choices on tips on how to get there.

In this information, we’ve taken a take a look at the completely different choices that you’ve and plenty of completely different ideas that may make driving to Spain simple. 


Leave a Reply

GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings