Capital City Airport: Madrid Airport (Barajas)
Spain is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Europe and the Spanish airports are getting busier year on year with more tourist flying in and out of the country. In fact there are so many more passengers coming through the airports these days, many of them are expanding to accommodate even more passengers with brand new terminal buildings and additional runways.
Many of the airports in Spain process both domestic and international flights with a number of the low cost airlines now operating from most. Some of the long haul flights are only possible from main international airports like Madrid and Barcelona.
This Spanish Airport Guide is here to help you find lots of information about the majority of main airports in the country. You will be able to access airport parking information, arrivals and departure times and even local maps.
Spanish airports processed 203,793,594 passengers last year with a large number going through Malaga (12,813,764), Alicante processing 9,578,308 passengers and Madrid nearly a quarter of the annual total alone at 50,846,104.
When compared to other international airports, airports in Spain are some of the busiest in the world.
Which Spanish airport is best for you and your destination?
There are many different airports operating across Spain and some of them, although providing international routes, are much smaller than others. Some are military and only have a certain number of public flights per week and others are domestic only.
Below we have tried to put together a brief guide of the main airports in Spain for each of the main resorts.
The Costa de la Luz: What are the best Spanish airports for the Costa de la Luz in Spain? This is the western coast of Spain on the Atlantic Ocean, which is home to popular cities like Huelva and Seville. The main airports for this coast are Seville, Jerez or Gibraltar Airport (although Gibraltar Airport is not Spanish it is located on the very tip of southern Spain and is still a viable option for flights between Spain and the UK and at certain times of the year to and from Morocco).
However if you are nearer to Portugal on the Costa de la Luz you could also consider the Portuguese airport Faro as it is only 20 minute across from the border with Spain.
The Costa del Sol: What is the best Spanish airport to get to the Costa del Sol in Spain? This is probably the most famous stretch of coast in Spain and is mainly served by one of Spain’s busiest airports, Malaga Airport. Others that could be considered for access to and from the Costa del Sol are Gibraltar Airport (about 45 minutes from Marbella, so about the same journey time as Malaga) or Granada Airport (about 2 hours from Marbella).
If you are staying east of Malaga towards Nerja then your choices are either Malaga or Granada.
There is a misconception that there is actually a Marbella Airport so please remember that the aforementioned airports would be your best choices to get to Marbella.
The Costa Tropical: What are the best Spanish airports for the Costa Tropical? This is a lesser known stretch of coast that starts just after the Costa del Sol and finishes before Costa Almeria. It is where you will find holiday resorts like Almunecar and inland is the city of Granada where during the winter months thousands of people arrive for the skiing at Sierra Nevada.
The main airport for this section of Spain would be Granada Airport or possibly Almeria and at a push Malaga.
The Costa Almeria: What are the best airports for the Costa Almeria? As you move up the coast from the Costa Tropical you come to the Costa Almeria where you would choose Almeria Airport as the main one to fly in and out of. Other Spanish Airports for this area to consider would be Granada or Murcia.
The Costa Calida: This coast has become quite popular over the last few years with a lot of people buying property in many of the coastal and inland areas. This part of Spain is best served by Murcia Airport or maybe Alicante as an alternative.
The Costa Blanca: This is quite a large section of the Spanish coast and again is one of the most popular holiday resorts in Spain, especially with the British. Like the Costa del Sol there is also a large expat community who travel in and out of Spain frequently.
The best Spanish airports for the southern Costa Blanca would be Alicante Airport or even Murcia, especially if you are staying in the Torrevieja area.
For the northern Costa Blanca, Valencia Airport might be a better option although many people still use Alicante due to the larger choice of flights.
The Costa Brava: Home to famous Spanish resorts like Lloret de Mar the main choice for this area would be Girona Airport or maybe even Barcelona Airport.
The Balearics is made up of the islands Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza: The airport for Mallorca is Palma de Mallorca (also spelt Majorca)
The most visited of all the airports in Spain is the one serving the capital Madrid. Madrid Airport not only has flights to and from most European destinations, it also is one of the main long-haul hubs for flights to many parts of the world.
The Main Spanish Airports:
(ALC) – This is located on the southern Costa Blanca and is also know as Alicante-Elche Airport. It is the 6th busiest in Spain and is operated by ENAIRE.
(LEI) – This is a much smaller airport than many of it’s neighbours and is a short distance from the city centre.
(OVD) – This is located in Castrillón and is actually the only international airport operating for the Asturias region of Spain.
(BLA) – This is one of Spain’s principal airports and is also known as Barcelona–El Prat Airport. It is located a short distance from the city centre and is operated by AENA.
(BIO) – This is the main airoprt serving the Basque region and is located just 9kms from the city centre. It is currently operated by ENAIRE
(CDT) – It is officially known as Castellón–Costa Azahar Airport and is operated by SNC-Lavalin
(FUE) – This is the only airport serving the island and is very close to it’s capital city. It is also officially known as El Matorral Airport
(GRO) – This is located a short distance from the city of Girona and is often used as an alternative to Barcelona. It is also known as Girona–Costa Brava Airport.
(GRX) – This is located fairly close to the city with access from the road between Granada and Malaga. It is not as busy as other airports and has less flights per day. It’s official name is Federico García Lorca Granada-Jaén Airport.
Gran Canaria Airport
(LPA) – This serves both commercial and domestic flights and is located in Las Palmas
(IBZ)- This serves both Ibiza and Formentera. During the summer months it serves thousands of passengers who descend on the island for their hoildays.
(XRY) – This is located just outside of the city of Jerez and is in the province of Cadiz, about 1.5 hour drive from the Costa del Sol. It is also officially known as La Parra Airport.
La Coruna Airport
(LCG) – This is located in Galicia and was formerly known by a different name, Alvedro Airport.
(ACE) – This is the main airport serving the island of Lanzarote and is also know by the name Arrecife Airport.
La Palma Airport
(SPC) – Sevres the island of La Palma part of the Canaries
(MAD) – The busiest airport in Spain which serves tha capital and also a connection for many long-haul flights from the rest of Spain. It is known by a few different names such as Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport and Madrid–Barajas Airport.
(AGP) – This is the 4th busiest airport in Spain and serves the entire Costa del Sol with hundreds of flights in and out every week from all over Europe. Back in 2011 it had an official name change and is now known as Málaga–Costa del Sol Airport.
Murcia San Javier Airport
(MJV) – This is an alternative to Alicante for the southern Costa Blanca and of course the Murcia region.
Palma de Mallorca
(PMI) – This serves if busy island of Mallorca and is located just 8kms from the main capital city of the island, Palma
(VLC) – For the north of the Costa Blanca and the Valencia region this is the main airport. It is also officially known as Manises Airport, which is the town it is actually situated.
Other Spanish Airports include:
Menorca (MAH), Reus (REU), Santander (SDR), Santiago (SCQ), Seville (SVQ), Tenerife Reina Sofia (TFS), Tenerife North (TFN), Tenerife South TCI), Valladolid (VLL), Vigo (VGO), Vitoria (VIT), Zaragoza (ZAZ)
Map of Airports in Spain
Below is a basic map of all the main airports in Spain so that you know which one to search for when planning your trip.