Santander is the capital and largest city of the province of Cantabria in Spain. It's on the north coast, with many beaches, ferries from Britain, and a small historic centre. The bars and restaurants of the old town are popular with tourists, as is El Sardinero beach a couple of kilometres away.
There appear to be good practical reasons for ancient settlers to have chosen the north side of the bay, sheltered from it and safer from the storms of the Bay of Biscay, on the north side of the promontory of Somorrostro and along the ancient Becedo estuary. Moreover, the hillside provided good visibility for spotting potential attackers, making this the ideal place for the foundation of a stable settlement, which was to evolve throughout the Middle Ages.
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