5 best places for expats to live in Spain

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5 best places for expats to live in Spain

The Kingdom of Spain is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Western Europe, it offers many advantages for foreigners who plan to move abroad for work.

For more information on health insurance in Spain for foreigners and a guide to the healthcare system, click here.

Why is the country gaining popularity among foreign workers and remote workers?

In this article, we have selected 5 of the best places for foreign workers to live in Spain according to the following criteria: comfort and cost of living, transport, working conditions.

Why Spain?

First, let's start with the reason why foreign workers prefer Spain compared to other European countries.

There are good salaries  with a relatively low cost of living in Europe. It's not the cheapest country, but an expat's budget will stretch here more than in many other countries on the continent. 

A strong public education system offers opportunities to study at affordable prices.

The public transport system is one of the best in Europe and the flights to other countries are cheap and fast. The infrastructure makes the old towns and centers convenient for walking.

High-quality health care. The best option is to take out your own private medical  insurance. However, the public health care system is also available.

 A diverse climate. Foreigners can choose the place of living according to their preferences from 5 climate zones.

The community of emigrants. A large migrant community will allow you to meet many new people and enjoy an active social life. English is common in communities because it is spoken in many countries. However, the Spanish language will help you to immerse yourself in the atmosphere of the country.

Cuisine. The food is one of the best things in Spanish culture. There is a wide selection of regional cuisines with unique dishes. 

Let's take a deeper look at the best cities in Spain for workers. Most of them have in common that they all have an excellent public transport system, a large number of activities and cultural offers for young professionals, families and retirees.


Thousands of immigrants come to Madrid every year. The capital quickly emerged from the recession that hit the world and offers excellent job opportunities for expats. There are cultural pearls and authenticity, carnivals, vibrant nightlife and a large number of restaurants where you can eat deliciously.

However, Madrid is a great city for families or seniors to move to. There are some family friendly places, which are quite close to the center that are quiet at night.


Barcelona is constantly competing with Madrid.The main advantage of this city over the capital is the coast. The city attracts with its impressive architecture and incredible festivals.

Barcelona is also the capital of Catalonia, it is an autonomous region with its own official Catalan language. However, all Catalans also know Spanish.

It is more difficult to find a job in Barcelona than in Madrid. It is worth noting that salaries are slightly lower, and the ability to speak a sufficient level of Spanish is a mandatory requirement.


Valencia is known for its distinctive cuisine, which is served throughout the city in traditional restaurants. The city is also located almost directly on the Mediterranean coast, making it easy to enjoy some of the region's famous beaches.

In recent years, Valencia has been gaining popularity among working expats with their families. There are world-famous museums, good schools, and one of the country's leading universities.

In general, it is easy to find a job in Valencia if you have the skills needed by the local labor market, especially in industry and tourism.


The city is located next to beaches and mountains. It takes only an hour to reach the beaches in Huelva or the mountains in Cádiz. The city itself has more than 100 km of bicycle paths. For travel lovers, it is important to know that the city is close to the Portuguese border.

Seville is home to many migrant communities. There are international schools as well as two universities. This is very convenient if you plan to stay in Spain for a long time.


The northern coast of Spain in the Bay of Biscay has a thousand kilometers of access to the Atlantic. And Bilbao, as the de facto capital of the Basque Country, is one of the best places for expatriates.

Although Bilbao is generally cooler and less sunny than its Mediterranean counterparts at the other end of the country, it still offers a milder climate than much of the rest of Europe. On the other hand, there are fewer tourists here than in the south of Spain.

The region is perfect for professionals who love the idea of ​​city life, but who try to avoid dynamic centers and the influx of tourists.

An important step in any move or trip is the successful obtainment of a visa or residence permit. You can find out more about the types of visas in Spain, the rules for applying for them, and what documents are required here

Find the best jobs in Spain for foreign nationals in 2023 here.

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