With over 300 days of sunshine per year, a healthy Mediterranean lifestyle, low living costs, and welcoming locals, it’s no surprise that over 5.4 million people in Spain are expats. But if you are thinking about moving to Spain, how do you find the best city or region to suit your social, work needs, and your budget?
In the article below, I’ll show you the cheapest places to live in Spain, some of the highlights of each city, and the different types of accommodation you can expect for your money.
Hi, I’m Timon!
I’ve experienced the heartbeat of Spain firsthand. Over the last five years, I’ve immersed myself in the dynamic cities of Spain, truly living the Spanish way. My insights into this beautiful country are rooted in genuine experience.
Can I live in Spain cheaply?
Yes, absolutely! Of course, your monthly expenses will always depend on your lifestyle and whether you’re traveling solo, as a couple, or as a family. Also, consider how often you plan to dine out, indulge in activities such as museums, participate in sporting activities, or travel to other areas.
Basing yourself in a town, city, or region that caters to your interests, and has good transport links, is also key to keeping costs down and making the most of your Spanish experience. If you prefer colder weather, you might want to explore our guide on the coldest city in Spain.
Cheapest places to live in Spain in 2023
If you’re looking for the cheapest places to live in Spain, the following destinations are some of the most popular areas in which to begin your search.
- Fuerteventura (the Canary Islands)
- Menorca (Island)
- Gran Canaria (the Canary Islands)
- Cordoba (Region)
- Seville (Sevilla)
- A Coruña
- Tenerife (the Canary Islands)
- Mallorca (Island)
- Lanzarote (the Canary Islands)
* Based on the information from NomadList
Average monthly cost of living in Spain
The average monthly cost of living in Spain can vary depending on the lifestyle you seek. However, the prices shown in the table below are realistic for two people renting a property in a Spanish city. For more information on cheap places to live in Spain, read on!
|Expense||Cost (in Euros)|
|Apartment (1 bedroom, city center)||€735|
|Utilities (Gas, water, electricity)||€130|
|Internet (60 Mbps or More)||€35|
|Bus (Monthly Pass)||€39|
|Fitness Club (Monthly 1 Adult)||€40|
|Groceries (Grocery stores in Spain)||€200–€400|
Cheapest Cities in Spain in 2023
Up next, we’ll get into the cheapest cities in Spain in 2023, ideal for experiencing the country’s charm and beauty on a budget.
1. Santa Cruz (Tenerife, Canary Islands)
Santa Cruz, the capital of Tenerife, sits on the island’s northern shores with an airport nearby and good public transport links, including a city tram service. The port city, nestled beneath a scenic mountain backdrop, retains an authentic, laid-back Spanish vibe – great news for those wishing to move here.
Northern Tenerife has a warm annual climate, with temperatures averaging 25°C (77°F), and it is famed for its beautiful parks, colonial architecture, art galleries, and beaches.
Dining out is cheap, with many restaurants offering a ‘Menu del Dia’ (Menu of the Day) for less than €9 EUR per person, and there are great bars and live music venues in the city too.
Average property rental prices range from €700 EUR ($760 USD) per month for a one-bedroom apartment to €900 EUR ($970 USD) for a three-bedroom property in a quiet neighborhood.
2. Zaragoza (Saragossa)
Zaragoza is located on the shores of the Ebro River in the Aragon region in northern Spain. The city offers a unique blend of history and culture – great for those who want Spanish city life’s benefits, without a hefty price tag.
The weather in Zaragoza is hot in summer and cool in winter; plus, it’s easy to reach from the regional airport, seven miles from the center. There’s a high-speed rail link to Barcelona and Madrid, and you can easily get around the city via tram or bus.
There’s also lots to see and do in Zaragoza. You can visit 11th-century Aljafara Palace, the impressive Basilica de Nuestra Senora del Pilar, and the city has dozens of art, history and archaeology museums.
When it comes to shopping, local markets are cheap places to buy fresh produce, and if you fancy eating out a meal costs between €12–15 EUR per person in a reasonably priced restaurant.
If you’re interested in renting a property here, a two or three-bedroom apartment costs between €500 EUR ($545 USD) and €690 EUR ($750 USD) per month.
Murcia is a bustling university city popular with students and retirees. The city is blessed with over 320 days of sunshine every year and is just 30 minutes away from the Costa Calida, with 200 beaches, water sports activities, and world-class golf courses to enjoy.
Murcia city is compact and can be navigated on foot or by bike, although public transport services are also cheap to use. Typical days here are spent sipping cafe con leche in a tree-lined plaza, wandering through local parks, or admiring the impressive architecture while shopping. A few miles outside the city, outdoor enthusiasts can embrace nature while walking through the pine forests of El Valle Regional Park. The region is also famous for its wineries – with over 200 at the last count!
Regarding dining out, Murcia is cheap, with a good quality meal for one averaging €12 EUR. The city also has great nightlife situated around Las Tascas and Santa Eulalia.
One and two-bedroom apartments start at €550 EUR ($600 USD) per month, and a three-bedroom townhouse for families begins at €700 EUR ($760 USD).
4. Las Palmas (Gran Canaria, Canary Islands)
Las Palmas is the capital of Gran Canaria, located in the northeast of the island, 20 minutes from the nearest airport. This is the 4th cheapest city in Spain, and the cost of living here is more affordable than over 90% of other areas in Western Europe. Las Palmas benefits from a sub-tropical climate and mild, dry weather year-round, making it a fabulous place for outdoor enthusiasts.
The city is popular with tourists with a historic old town, bars, restaurants, urban beaches, and lively plazas. You won’t feel isolated here either, as the shops and supermarkets sell familiar foods, cinemas show movies in English, and there are lots of outdoor activities to enjoy. There are also job opportunities on the island, particularly for skilled workers, and in the tourism industry.
It’s cheap to eat out with a meal for two costing around €25–30 EUR and the rents are reasonable.
A studio apartment can set you back around €500 EUR ($545 USD) per month, a two-bedroom €700-850 EUR ($760-920 USD), and a three-bedroom can cost upwards of €900 EUR ($975 USD).
If you speak conversational Spanish or really want to immerse yourself in the Andalucian culture, you will love the city of Granada. Home to the spectacular hilltop Alhambra Palace and the charming labyrinthian neighborhood of Albayzin, this place fuzes southern Spain with the Moorish heritage of North Africa. Learn more about Granada’s weather and the best time to visit.
A regional airport is located just outside the city, and it’s possible to drive from here to the winter ski resort of Sierra Nevada, the white villages of Las Alpujarras, and the golden sandy beaches of Costa de Almeria.
In the Sacromonte district, you can watch traditional flamenco performances in cave houses and in local bars on Calle Navas, bartenders hand out plates of tapas with every drink you purchase (making it a cheap dining experience).
The city appeals to all, plus, it’s super cheap – studio apartments cost around €400 EUR ($435 USD) per month. Two-bedroom properties are generally €580 EUR ($630 USD), and three-bedrooms can range upwards from €750 EUR ($815 USD).
Malaga is one of those rare coastal cities where beautiful beaches accompany historic architecture, hilltop castles, botanical gardens, and fine shopping experiences. The weather is hot in summer, mild in winter, and an International Airport serves the city. Discover the most ideal time to explore Malaga.
If you choose to live in Malaga city itself, it’s easy to get around on foot, by bike, bus, or even Segway. Many expats live in the surrounding coastal areas along the Costa del Sol, so you won’t feel completely isolated when you first arrive, especially if your Spanish language skills are less than fluent. There are also plenty of job opportunities along the coast if you’re looking for work.
The closer to the beach and historical center, the more expensive the properties become in Malaga, but generally, a one-bed property will cost €650 EUR ($700 USD), and a two or three-bed property between €800–900 EUR ($860–975 USD).
Valencia is cheaper to live in than Madrid or Barcelona, one of the most popular Spanish cities, but equally as appealing. Home to the futuristic City of Arts & Sciences, a charming historic center, and abundant UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Valencia has great year-round weather and caters to all ages and requirements – whether you’re a digital nomad, moving as a couple, family, or retiring to Spain.
The city offers shady parks, stunning beaches, and lively nightlife, and it’s popular with foodies – it is the birthplace of paella, after all! Plenty of festivals are held annually, including Semana Santa at Easter and the Fallas Festival with music, fireworks and street food.
You can easily find a one-bedroom apartment for less than €680 EUR ($740 USD). The cheapest two beds come in at around €700 EUR ($760 USD) per month, and three-bedroom apartments will cost upwards of €800 ($870 USD).
Alicante is home to many expats and is popular with couples, families, and retirees. Many people in the city speak languages other than Spanish and there’s a great community vibe, plenty of resources and jobs.
With sunshine almost all year round, an International airport, easy motorway access and an enviable city transport network, it’s a great base for those wanting to explore Spain too.
Some city highlights include a medieval castle, palm-fringed promenades, museums, and an old town with white-washed houses and cobbled streets. There are golden sandy beaches nearby and golf courses just outside the city.
Locals save money by shopping for produce at Mercado Central with its fruits, vegetables, and seafood, but dining out in Alicante is cheap too – with tapas, daytime set menus and huge pans of paella for sharing.
A one-bedroom apartment costs €600 EUR ($650 USD) monthly. Two-bedroom apartments are approximately €700 EUR ($760 USD) per month and a three-bedroom property €800 EUR ($860 USD).
9. Seville (Sevilla)
Seville is one of the most popular cities in Spain and Andalucia’s capital. Located on either side of the Guadalquivir River, it dazzles with monumental landmarks, incredible city parks, and modern amenities.
The city is easy to reach (it has its own airport), and once here, you can get around on foot or by bicycle. There’s so much to see and do, including visiting the Royal Alcázar of Seville, Parque Maria Luisa, Seville Cathedral, La Giralda, and Las Setas walkway. Across the river in Triana, you’ll find the birthplace of Flamenco with plenty of taverns and Calle Betis for riverside nightlife.
One meal costs around €14 EUR and you can purchase tapas for two or three Euros per dish.
One thing to note is that Seville gets very hot in summer, and most locals head for the coast in July and August. Therefore, a key element to sourcing an apartment in Seville is finding one with good air conditioning!
Property prices range from €550 EUR ($600 USD) for a one-bedroom apartment, and two and three-bedroom properties can vary from €700 EUR ($760 USD) to €900 EUR ($975 USD).
Pamplona is probably best known for the yearly ‘running of the bulls’ in July. But aside from that event, Pamplona is a city brimming with charm, beautiful architecture, and delicious cuisine.
The city has a small airport and it’s easy to drive to and from the ferry ports of San Sebastian, Bilbao and Santander. You can even pop to the Pyrenees or France for the day!
In the Old Town, a network of alleyways open out to huge plazas where locals dine in the evenings – there’s a buzzing restaurant scene, with most places serving traditional (and cheap) Pinchos (a Basque-style tapa). Museums, romantic parks, a citadel and a cathedral will keep you occupied, and you can spot the bull sculptures dotted throughout the city.
One and two-bedroom properties range from €650 EUR ($705 USD) to €800 EUR ($870 USD). A three-bedroom apartment usually costs €800 EUR ($870 USD).
11. Palma (Mallorca)
Palma de Mallorca is a vibrant port city and a popular haven for tourists and expats. The city boasts an enviable 300 days of glorious weather each year, plus, it is consistently voted as one of the best places to live in the world.
Mallorca caters to all ages and is popular with couples, families, and retirees. Palma boasts a historic old town, a famous cathedral, hilltop castles, beautiful beaches, produce markets, and some great bodegas and tapas bars.
Although slightly more expensive than in other Spanish cities, property rentals are cheaper than in Barcelona and Madrid. A one-bedroom apartment in the center will cost between €750 EUR ($815 USD) and €900 EUR ($970 USD) per month and two bedrooms start at €950 EUR ($1030 USD) per month.
What is the cheapest province of Spain to live in?
Andalucia and Murcia are the cheapest provinces to live in if you plan on moving to Spain. In Andalucia, in addition to the cities of Malaga and Granada, there are also white-washed villages, and you can look at Cadiz, and Almeria for further inspiration. In Murcia, the resorts of the Costa Calida and the city of Cartagena are also worth considering.
To conclude, my top 11 cheapest places to live in Spain should give you a good idea of the best areas that will suit you and your travel companions. Most coastal cities offer great expat communities, as does Zaragoza, and all areas are categorized as safe places to live. Most cities also offer international schooling for younger family members.
FAQ about living cheaply in Spain
Thinking about moving to Spain and wondering how to keep your expenses low? You must have tons of questions about living affordably in this gorgeous country. No worries, I’ve got your back! I’ve created a super relatable Q&A to clarify your doubts about budget-friendly residing in Spain.
How much money do I need to live in Spain?
For a comfortable life, you’ll need around €1000-1500 EUR ($1100-1650 USD) monthly. That covers rent, food, transportation, and some leisure activities. But remember, it depends on your lifestyle!
The cheapest places to live in Spain by the sea
The cheapest places to live in Spain by the sea include Las Palmas (Gran Canaria), Santa Cruz (Tenerife), and Malaga (Andalusia). These places offer lower living costs while providing access to beautiful beaches and amenities.
The cheapest places to retire in Spain
For those looking to retire in Spain on a budget, Lugo (Galicia), Cáceres (Extremadura), and Jaén (Andalusia) are attractive options. These cities have a lower cost of living and a relaxed atmosphere, making them ideal for retirees.
Cheapest places in Spain for a holiday
Affordable vacation spots in Spain include Salou (Costa Dorada), La Manga del Mar Menor (Murcia), and Benidorm (Costa Blanca). These locations offer a range of accommodations and activities at reasonable prices.
Where is the cheapest rent in Spain?
Cities with some of the lowest rental prices in Spain are Granada, Murcia, and Zaragoza. These locations are less touristy and provide more affordable housing options.
Just letting you know
When you buy something through my links, I’ll earn a small commission—don’t worry, it won’t cost you any extra! It’s a win-win, right?