Ultimate Female Packing List for Spain in Spring

packing list for spain in spring

See all female packing lists.

Like a lot of places, Spain’s weather can be variable in the spring. I always think of Spain as a hot country, which it is in the height of summer, but then I forget that it does cool off around the edges.

I recently spent a bit over a week in the little known town of Úbeda in Andalucia and another week or so in Madrid, Toledo, and Salamanca, and it was late March/early April. The weather ranged from warm and sunny (think short sleeve shirts and cocktails on the terrace) to cold, windy, rainy, and OMG I think it’s actually snowing.

Here’s my packing list for Spain in spring.

Luggage

After two years, my REI Trail 40 backpack is still holding strong. I love that bag. I also brought a purse and my REI Stuff bag, which really came in handy for days when I needed more than what fits in my purse. I had two packing cubes to help organize small things and get my clothes to take up a little less space. As always, I was happy to be traveling carry-on only.

>>Read about why we think solo female travelers should go carry-on only.

packing list for Spain in spring
Úbeda, Spain on one of the warm, sunny days

Clothing

I normally pack for one week no matter how long the trip is because I know I can do laundry along the way.

However, on this trip I knew I wouldn’t have time for laundry until about 11 days in, so I packed a little extra. In the end, I couldn’t find an open laundromat, so I washed some socks and underwear in the sink and wore my shirts twice each.

So you most definitely do not need quite as much as I packed, but I wanted to show you just how much can fit into a 40L backpack if you really want it to.

  • 10 short sleeved shirts – Depending on your trip, you can probably bring half as many shirts.
  • 2 long sleeved shirts – On cooler days I was layering a long sleeved shirt over my short sleeved shirt, and on cold days, it was one of several layers.
  • 1 hoodie or lightweight jacket – I actually had both of these because I was coming from Berlin (where I live) and it was still quite cold there. Turns out, I wore the jacket over the hoodie about 50% of my time in Spain.
  • 2 pairs of jeans – Again, 2 pairs might be a bit overkill for you, but I wore one pair on the plane and packed another because I knew it would be a while until I got to a laundromat. You could pack a different kind of travel-friendly pants instead to change things up.
  • 12 pairs of underwear – I was hoping to avoid hand-washing clothes on my trip to Spain so I packed a few more than normal. And then I had to wash them in the sink anyway since I was traveling for 19 days.
  • 2 bras
  • 6 pairs of socks – I washed these in the sink many times.
  • Something to sleep in – About half the time I was there, it was cold enough to want to wear pants to bed, so I was glad to have my gym pants. Leggings or yoga pants would work, too.

If you like to wear dresses when you travel pack one or two that can transition from warm to cold weather. I never once felt under-dressed in jeans though.

packing list for Spain in spring
One of the smaller plazas in Madrid

Shoes

  • Comfortable walking shoes – Spain has lots of great sights to see and lots of cobblestone roads, so make sure you wear shoes that won’t hurt your feet.
  • Flip flops – Only necessary if you’re staying in a hostel or going to a beach area that’s actually warm enough in the spring.
  • Flats – Pack a pair of fold-up flats if you’re bringing any dresses.

>>Read the female packing list for Barcelona in fall/winter.

Toiletries

I didn’t pack anything out of the ordinary here, but if you forget anything, there are plenty of shops in Spain where you can buy toiletries or other items you might need.

  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Shower gel or soap
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Deodorant
  • Solid perfume
  • Lotion
  • Moisturizer
  • Lip balm
  • Razor
  • Brush and hair ties
  • Prescription medication
  • Solid sunscreen and solid bug repellent

>>Read why solid toiletries are perfect for carry-on only.

packing list for Spain in spring
Toledo, Spain from above: Alcazar (left) and Cathedral (right)

Miscellaneous Items

For the first time in a long time, I did not pack a sarong. With no beach time in my Spain schedule, I didn’t see much need for it.

  • Sunglasses – Helpful on the days when it was sunny.
  • Scarf – For the other days when it was windy and cold.
  • Umbrella – I know lots of people advise against packing an umbrella, but it rained enough in every city I visited that I was glad to have mine with me. Sometimes the hood on a rain jacket just isn’t enough to keep your head from getting wet.
  • Non-liquid laundry detergent sheets – I travel with Travelon non-liquid laundry detergent sheets for almost every trip as a back-up. I hate washing clothes in the sink, but sometimes it’s necessary. They aren’t great for bigger items like shirts or jeans, but these work really well for socks and underwear.
  • Granola bars – This might not be necessary for you, but I have several dietary restrictions, and having some of my own snacks with me really helps. I had two boxes of granola bars jammed into my backpack along with everything else I’ve listed here.

>>Check out the female packing list for southern Spain in winter.

Electronics

  • Laptop – I worked a little while I was in Spain, and I Skyped with my husband during the first 10 days while I was traveling solo. Consider whether you really need to travel with a laptop.
  • Kindle – I read a lot while in transit and during a few really nice days while sitting on a terrace or in a plaza.
  • Camera – I took lots of pictures throughout my trip to Spain.
  • Plug adapter – Spain uses European style plugs, so if you’re coming from a different part of the world, pack a plug adapter.
  • Batteries, chargers, cords

>>Read our tips for packing and protecting electronics.

packing list for Spain in spring
Salamanca, Spain: old Roman bridge and the Cathedral in the background

Visiting Spain in spring

Do some research about where you’re going before you hop on the plane. The northern half of the country and any areas that are mountainous are likely to have fluctuating weather in the spring, especially early spring. Southern Spain along the coast is more likely to be warm.

Toledo makes a good day trip from Madrid, but we enjoyed being there for a few days. Late morning and early afternoon was crowded, even in late March, so it was nice to explore outside of the day-tripping hours.

Not many tourists visit Salamanca, but it’s a big university town and worth going for a couple of days. The main plaza is gorgeous, the cathedral is unique in that it combines the old one with the new one, and it’s just a lively city with a great atmosphere.

Spain is a wonderful country for a food tour. I’ve taken a tapas tour in two different cities now, and I enjoyed them both. I definitely recommend searching for a food tour no matter where your trip takes you so you can learn about the cuisine.

packing list for spain in spring
spain in spring packing list

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Written by Ali

Ali Garland is a freelance writer, blogger, and travel addict who made it to all 7 continents before her 30th birthday. She enjoys travel planning, encouraging others to see the world, and packing carry-on only. She and her husband are expats living in Berlin. You can find Ali at Ali's Adventures and Travel Made Simple.

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Gear We Use

Organization

Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.


Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.


Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Clothing

Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

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Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Accommodation

Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking!

Booking.com – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions

Comments

    • Ali says

      Hi Gwen! I hate traveling with a hair dryer, so I always look for hotels that have one in the room. And no, I actually almost never wear makeup, but I also figured those of you who do would still pack whatever makeup you use.

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