Books. Plump paperbacks are the ticket. Trading back and forth, we got through an entire leg with a two volume set of The Adventures Sherlock Holmes.
Museums & Concerts. In fair-sized or larger towns, check with the local Tourist Office for what might be open or scheduled. A highlight of our trip was the Museum of Evolution in Burgos, and that very night, a rousing Rachmaninoff concert.
Dining. This is the day-to-day equivalent of going to the theater, to look forward to and to be enjoyed, often at long tables by roaring fires with fellow pelerins or pelegrinos. In France, a hostelry’s demi-pension rate includes an excellent (often gourmet) dinner, unlimited wine, and a simple breakfast. Spain offers menu del dias, and a choice of simpler fare. In France, lunch was often a picnic, and in Spain (with daily life on a later clock) we often held off on lunch until we got to our destination. Mustard! Red pepper flakes! We packed both, good to liven up bland fare.