Local information - Southern Spain, Sotogrande

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Official Language

Spanish - regional variations to apply but many shop owners and restaurateurs do speak good English.

Climate

Between mid May and the end of September, there is very little rainfall in Southern Spain and there are normally between 10 - 11 hours of sunshine a day. The winters are mild with the majority of rainfall between November and January. However even during these months, you get your percentage of clear sunny days.

Time

GMT : +1 hour in the winter and GMT +2 in the summer.

Electricity

220V, 50Hz - Standard European-pattern used.

Money

The Spanish currency is the Euro and all major credit cards are accepted nationwide.


Banks

Banks are open for business from 8.30am to 2.30pm Monday to Saturday, except in the summer months when they are closed on Saturday. Some of the larger branch offices are open in the afternoon.

Opening Times

The usual shop opening times are 9.30am to 1.30pm and then re-open from 4.30pm to 8.30pm. However many of the big supermarkets and department stores/malls do not close for a break during the day. Due to the later finish you will find that most restaurants serve dinner from between 8.30pm to 11pm, with these hours expanding in the summer months, allowing you to eat into the early hours.

Tipping

All restaurants in Spain include service in their prices, however leaving a tip is regarded as the 'norm' in bars, restaurants, and taxis. Each case depends on your generosity and the quality of service but usually varies from between 5% and 10% of the total bill.

Useful Addresses / Numbers

London Spanish Tourist Office
22-23, Manchester Square
London
W1M 5AP
Tel: 0207 486 8077

New York Tourist Office Of Spain
666 Fifth Avenue,
New York
NY 10103
Tel: 212 - 265 8822