Spanish Holidays - the East Coast

If you re thinking of spending your Spanish holidays on Spain s east coast and are wondering which "costa" to pick, you re in for a difficult time because there are so many marvellous places to choose from!

Below, you will find a r sum of all the "costas" which comprise Spain s eastern, Mediterranean coast, renowned for its kindly climate and healthy diet.

Happy hunting and happy holidays!


Moving away from the Region of Andalucia and heading north along the east coast of Spain, we find the small Region of Murcia, with its Costa C lida.

This is still a largely unspoilt coastline and, although it has long been popular with the locals, until relatively recently it was a fairly undiscovered area for a holiday in Spain.

The warm sea water, wild dwarf palms, oleanders and picturesque fishing towns make it a pleasant place to stay and the area is speedily being developed for vacation package Spain deals. So, perhaps it s best to go there soon, before it gets too busy, if you enjoy peace and quiet!

It is unique in that there is a peninsula running parallel to the coastline, thus forming the Mar Menor - Europe s largest salt water lagoon, with over 170 square kms of shallow water.

Traditional fishing villages can be found along the shores of the Mar Menor. Around the Cabo de Palos, the coastline is rugged and famous for scuba diving. And, along the La Manga strip, you will find white, sandy beaches.

La Manga Club, with three 18-hole golf courses, is one of the world s great resorts, where a luxurious playground has been shaped on 1400 acres of lush countryside.

So, the Costa C lida offers Spanish holidays to suit all tastes.

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"Costa Blanca" means "White Coast", a name taken from the endless miles of beautiful, white, sandy beaches which stretch from the cosmopolitan town of Denia in the north to the popular Spanish holidays resort of Torrevieja in the south of the Province of Alicante, Region of Valencia. It also happens to be the area I live, so it is a "costa" close to my heart!

Its mild climate and gorgeous settings have resulted in the Costa Blanca becoming one of the most popular coastlines as regards the vacation package Spain.

It offers all things to all people: you will find big, brash beachside resorts with sky-scraper hotels and all-night discos; but, there are also plenty of quaint, quiet bays and fishing villages.

So, whether you are a family type or a fun-loving party person, a golfer or a gourmet, a sun worshipper or a sporty type, you will find something to please you here.

Alicante City is the capital of the province with an attractive center, port and beaches.

Less than an hour s drive away is Benidorm, the most developed place for Spanish holidays on this coastline, with its fine Levante and Poniente Beaches, a thriving hotel industry, tall buildings and plenty to do.

Further south is Torrevieja, another well-developed and popular resort that has expanded rapidly over recent years.

But, if you seek something a little less commercialised for your holiday in Spain, there are a number of pretty, smaller resorts with good beaches, amongst them Javea, Denia, Moraira, Calpe, Altea, Albir, Villajoyosa and Campello, to name but a few.

As with several of the other Spanish costas, there seem to be two "seasons" on the Costa Blanca: in the winter, it attracts the more "mature" person; then, as April/May arrives, there is gradually a change-over to younger people. And, of course, during school holiday breaks there are families as well.

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The Mediterranean Costa de Valencia stretches along the Province of Valencia, which is to the north of the Province of Alicante.

Its coastline is reached by four rivers that begin their journey in the mountains: Palancia, Turia, J car (X quer) and Serpis.

These meander down to the coastline where they enter the sea, brimming with marine traffic in and around the ports of Sagunto, Valencia and Gandia. There, we find modern sailing facilities and lively tourist centers. A barrier of dunes flanks the low, sandy coastline of shallow waters.

Although the beaches along this stretch were originally used mainly by the locals of Valencia City and its surrounds, the resorts are rapidly being developed and you will find some good tourist and leisure centers for your vacation package Spain, offering windsurfing, golf and sailing.

The beaches of Cullera, Gandia and Oliva combine beautiful landscapes with a number of sporting and recreational facilities.

There are outstanding beaches and dunes in Canet d En Berenguer. And other beaches well-worth visiting on your Spanish holidays are Malvarrosa, Las Arenas, Pinedo, El Saler, and Devesa.

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The most northerly province of the Region of Valencia is Castell n and the stretch of Mediterranean littoral which belongs here is known as the Costa del Azahar.

The Spanish word for orange-blossom is "azahar", and the coast is thus called because of the orange plantations which run all along its coastline, giving off a marvellous perfume when in blossom.

The 112 kms comprising this coastline, which stretches as far as Vinaros in the north - close to the border with Catalonia - are full of fine, sandy beaches and coves, formed at the places where the spurs of the Iberian mountains run into the Mediterranean Sea.

All the way along, the coastal shelf gently slopes away from the coast, making the beaches particularly safe for a holiday in Spain: they are famed for their calm, crystal-clear waters and ideal for the practice of water sports.

Beaches worth visiting on your Spanish holidays include Benicassim, Oropesa, Torre La Sal, Torrenostra, Alcala de Chivet, Pe iscola, Benicarlo and Vinaros.

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The Costa Dorada, situated in the south of the Region of Catalonia in the Province of Tarragona, encompasses about 260 kms of golden beaches, hence its name of "the Golden Coast".

The coastline is dotted with seaside villages and has a long fishing tradition. Spacious, clean, sandy beaches are washed by crystal, shallow waters and it is a popular family destination for a holiday in Spain, with many resorts offering a more tranquil holiday than can be found in some of the highly-developed costas further south.

Probably, the best-known of these resorts as far as the vacation package Spain is concerned, is Salou - found in the north of the Costa Dorada. This, along with Cambrils, offers safe, shallow waters which are ideal for small children.

Calafell, another popular destination for Spanish holidays, has 5 kms of fine, sandy beaches with good, clean sand. The water is shallow and warm - again, perfect for all ages.

Other beaches to the north include Cunit, Sant Salvador, Torredembarra, El Miracle, Playa Llarga and Mont-roig del Camp.

Further south, you will find places such as L Hospitalet de L Infant, L Almadrava, L Ametlla de Mar, L Ampolla, Els Alfacs, Sant Carles de la Rapita and Les Cases d Alcanar.

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The Costa de Garraf, again in the Region of Catalonia and overlooking the Mediterranean, is to be found in the Province of Barcelona, around the mouth of the River Llobregat.

The part of this coast which runs along the Garraf Massif is dotted with small coves and, elsewhere, there are many fine, sandy beaches suitable for Spanish holidays.

This costa boasts several popular beach resorts, many of them possessing the coveted Blue Flag.

Around the Catelldefels and Sitges areas are La Ribera, Garraf and Aiguadolc. In the Vilanova i la Geltru area is Ribes Roges. And, around Cubelles are the Playa Larga and Riera Xica.

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Again in the Region of Catalonia and Province of Barcelona, but this time to the north of the City of Barcelona and up as far as Maigrat de Mar (bordering on the Province of Girona), is the Costa de Maresme.

This coast is almost entirely lined with long beaches and has a scenery full of sharp-edged cliffs carved out by the pounding of its crystal-clear waters.

The Costa de Maresme offers some very fine resorts for a holiday in Spain, where there is plenty to do, yet it manages to retain its tranquility - unlike some of its counterparts further south.

Calella is definitely its tourist capital for the vacation package Spain, enjoying a typical mild, Mediterranean-type climate and possessing a fine, Blue-Flagged beach.

Another popular resort for Spanish holidays and also a Blue-Flagged beach is El Masnou.

Other seaside resorts in the area include Pineda, Sant Pol de Mar, Canet de Mar, Caldes de Estrac, Vilassar de Mar and Premi de Mar.

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The Costa Brava, geographically bound by the Mediterranean Sea and the Pyrenees, refers to the coast of the Province of Girona in the Region of Catalonia. It stretches from Blanes in the south to Portbou in the north, close to the French border.

The 214 kms of coastline consist of a variety of beautiful beaches, coves, cliffs and fine, golden sands, and its modern infrastructure for tourism turns the Costa Brava into one of the foremost tourist destinations as regards the vacation package Spain.

In particular, between Blanes in the south and Estartit further north, you will find some of the prettiest places on the Mediterranean.

Blanes itself is an important tourist resort for a holiday in Spain possessing a good, 1 km beach which is home to yacht clubs and a marina.

Between Blanes and Lloret de Mar are the peaceful beaches of Santa Catalina and the open, developed tourist construction of Fenals.

Lloret de Mar is a tourist resort "par excellence" with a large number of hotels and an animated night-life. Between Lloret and Tossa del Mar is the beach of Canyelles - not so built up.

Tossa del Mar, the other name for it being "Blue Paradise" (so christened by Marc Chagall when he visited and painted the town in 1933) has become an important international tourist center for Spanish holidays, but still manages to preserve one of the most harmonious sceneries on the coast.

Further north are San Felie s open, level beaches, and the Platja d Aron (Aro Beach) with its fine sand and good night-life.

At S Agaro, you will encounter one of the most luxurious hotels in Spain where Charlie Chaplin, Humphrey Bogart, Ava Gardener, Lauren Bacall and many other famous guests have stayed.

Some other beaches include Sa Cova, Palamos, N Artigues, El Comtat de Sant Jordi, Roque Planes, Torre Valentina and Treaumal.

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And that about winds it up as far as Spain s east coast goes; perhaps I ll bump into you here while you re on your Spanish holidays!

Click here to discover all about Spain s southern "costas".

Click here to discover all about Spain s lush, northern "costas".

Click here to discover all about the "costas" of Spain s islands.

A general overview of Spanish beaches.

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