Translated as the ‘warm coast’, this cultural slice of mainland Spain will be sure to steal hearts. Perched on the south east coastline, a beautiful patchwork of beguiling beaches, baroque-style cities, and rolling countryside await.
With so much on offer, here are some must-see things to add to your Costa Calida itinerary:
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Dicover La Manga
Known by locals as "paradise between two seas, this narrow twenty-kilometre sandy strip separates the Mar Menor from the Mediterranean. Days here are all about lying down on silky golden sands, swimming in two different seas, and watching the sunset from waterfront restaurants. Drawing in water sports fans from all over, if you’re brave enough, head out on the water on a kayak or windsurf.
Flop out on a beach
With 250 kilometres of spellbinding coastline stacked with Blue Flag beaches, every day is a beach day here. From deep, golden swathes of sand to pretty, hidden coves and the warm waters of the Mar Menor - there’s something for every type of beach bum. The wide stretch of Puerto de Mazarron and Playa Honda are full of family-friendly facilities and gently sloping sands. While the more intrepid will love Calblanque, a real wildlife hotspot with rare sea turtles calling this rugged bay home
Travel back in time at Cartagena
With its prized spot in the Mediterranean Sea, walk in the footsteps of Romans, Arabs, and Byzantines in its palm-tree lined streets. Having all left their own mark on the city, you’re surrounded by ancient ruins, fascinating museums, and age-old architecture. Marvel at the historic epicentre, the well-preserved Roman Theatre, which dates all the way back to the first century.
Take a dip in Mar Menor
A treasure trove of natural beauty, this saltwater lagoon is one of the region’s best-kept secrets. Legends say its relaxing waters and mud baths are famous for their healing properties, drawing in many holidaymakers wanting to soak up its magical charm. Blanketed in 9 kilometres of powder-soft sand, there’s plenty to discover here.
Jump into Tentegorra Aventura
Craving some outdoor adventure? Want some fun with the kids? Tentegorra Aventura is an action-packed multi-activity centre full of exciting things to do. Get lost in mazes, jump across high ropes, and zoom down zip lines. Let your competitive side come out with some laser paintball or make a splash in the colourful aqua park with slides, ships, and pools galore.
Visit Lorca Castle
Spanning over 700 years, this medieval fortress was a powerhouse of its time, sitting high on a hilltop. Lorca Castle is a well-preserved example of medieval architecture, with towering walls and crumbling facades. Take a tour of the castle interiors, visit its fascinating museum, or marvel at the sprawling 360-degree countryside panoramas.
Hike the Sierra Espuna National Park
This vast wilderness is a breath-taking mosaic of verdant valleys, pine-clad forests, and soaring mountain ranges. With hiking and biking trails that weave through the landscape, you’ll be in awe over the rolling scenery with hues of green at every turn. Even if you’re not a big hiker, there are plenty of recreational areas perfect for laid-back picnics and barbecues.
Bite into the local cuisine
With hundreds of years of rich maritime heritage, we can see why the gastronomy scene takes its inspiration from the sea. A regional staple is a homemade caldero, a fisherman's stew made with fish, rice, and saffron. No trip here is complete without sampling some tapas, with slow-roasted octopus and deep-fried prawns being usual contenders. For those with a sweet tooth, try pestiños, a moreish doughnut-style dessert coated in a delicious sugar syrup.
Delve into Murcia
Just an hour away from the cost, Murcia is well worth it for a day trip. There’s history to be uncovered on every street, from an impressive Baroque-style cathedral, age-old architecture and the fascinating Museo Salzillo. With celebrated tapas bars down narrow streets, sample up delicious meats and cheeses, washing everything down with the local Monastrell red. Away from its laid-back persona, there’s an engaging nightlife scene with wine bars and ale pubs aplenty.
Admire the Cathedral de Santa Maria
Stretching back all the way to Baroque times, this ancient staple is one of Spain’s finest architectural gems. See the history come to life with a collection of artefacts and Renaissance paintings, rich frescoed interiors, and twenty small chapels to delve into. With a dramatic bell tower soaring above the city, climb to the top to be wowed by sweeping views across Cartagena, the seascape, and the countryside.
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