SORREL DOWNER

Journalist, producer and media consultant based in Spain working for UK press. My focus here is safe travel and the tourism industry. I also cover current affairs, business, architecture and rural regeneration, and work / have worked for The Guardian, BBC, FT, The Times, Conde Nast Traveller, Business Life, Reader's Digest, Evening Standard.

TOURISM: RISKY BUSINESS

It’s a risky gamble. Should countries re-activate foreign tourism before an international test and contact trace system is in place? Last year 1.5 billion people made trips for tourism. 2020 … Continue reading

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WHAT’S ALLOWED IN SPAIN THIS WEEK?

There are four phases from lockdown to the new normality in post-COVID Spain, and on May 25 almost half the country advanced from 1 to 2. So what does that … Continue reading

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SPAIN HOTELS HEALTH & SAFETY

What is being done to protect tourists in Spain? A lot, is the answer. See my overview in The Guardian. The Spanish government released a set of protocols for 21 … Continue reading

May 15, 2020 · Leave a comment

TIMETABLE TO A NEW NORMAL

Spain has a 4-phase plan for easing restrictions. The idea is that we reach a new normal by July 1. This is how it looked on May 11. Every two … Continue reading

May 14, 2020 · Leave a comment

COOL YET WARM HOTELS – SPAIN

COMING SOON: Sublime design hotels with fires in the bedrooms across Spain. There are more than you might think and I’m checking them all. And taking my time.

February 1, 2020 · Leave a comment

DRIVE FROM SEVILLE TO EAT HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE

Ecija (A4 from Seville to Cordoba), and Marchena and Osuna (A92 from Seville to Malaga / Granada) are long weekend destinations in La Campiña de Sevilla (see my Guardian piece … Continue reading

January 20, 2020 · Leave a comment

PEOPLE IN GLASS HOUSES

Possibly the only reason to travel through the Gorafe desert in Granada is to take a look at the Casa del Desierto. The bleak desert can be extremely hot and … Continue reading

January 2, 2020 · Leave a comment

COULD IT BE MAGIC?

Few know. Some of the 51 towns on the Pueblos Mágicos de España network could be on the Not Visited Much network. Here’s my Top 10 of the best least … Continue reading

December 19, 2019 · Leave a comment

WHEN IN SEVILLE

Far too much to recommend in beautiful Seville. I could have filled double the space in The Guardian City Guide. Start there, but here are four more top places. Las … Continue reading

April 9, 2017 · Leave a comment

OLIVE OIL FRAUD

Meant to include a link to this feature on extra virgin olive oil fraud in Italy, written a while back for Reader’s Digest. Fascinating to research the industry in Bari. … Continue reading

April 1, 2017 · Leave a comment

BRITISH BOHEMIA

Thirty years ago a zoroastrian from Zanzibar with eye make-up, buckteeth and unusually stretchy clothes, lost in his music whatever it was about, was a reminder that there were bohemians … Continue reading

June 14, 2016 · Leave a comment

ALMERIA

Recently had an action-packed tour of Cabo de Gata and the edges of the Tabernas desert in Almeria, researching an article for The Guardian. Here’s some extra bits.

September 9, 2015 · Leave a comment

THE VUELTA, A TOUR OF SPAIN

The Vuelta Ciclista a España aka The Tour of Spain is taking place for a 70th time. The event starts on August 22 in Puerto Banús and – after some brand new challenging … Continue reading

August 19, 2015 · Leave a comment

WHAT THE VUELTA NEEDS IS DUCKS & FREE STUFF

The Vuelta Ciclista a España aka The Tour of Spain takes place for a 70th time at the end of August. The event starts on August 22 in Puerto Banús and – … Continue reading

August 13, 2015 · Leave a comment

Costa de la Luz | Travel | The Guardian

Guide to the moorish jewels and the spaces in between the coastal towns of Cádiz province – craggy mountains, pine forests, fields and endless beaches.  Read it over at  The Guardian

July 15, 2015 · Leave a comment

Guardian | Huelva Coast

I wrote a holiday guide to the Huelva coast for The Guardian which I hope will be useful this summer. This is a quintessential, mainly local, family seaside destination with … Continue reading

June 28, 2015 · Leave a comment

Huelva Buenas Noticias

Huelva Buenas Noticias interviewed me to get my thoughts on the Huelva coast following a research trip in preparation for a Guardian travel piece. All is lovelier than you expect … Continue reading

June 19, 2015 · Leave a comment

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