de la Luz: Huelva & Cadiz
The fine, sandy beaches of the Costa
de la Luz, in the shelter of pine woods, stretch
in an arc from Ayamonte to Tarifa, from the mouth of the river
Guadiana to the Straits of Gibraltar.
This is the coast of Western Andalusia, the
coastline of the Provinces of Huelva and Cadiz, and 'Gateway
to America' that has been cherished since the time of Tartessos,
some 3,000 years ago, until today when people still keep coming
in search of the mild climate, the originality of scenery,
the elegance of its monuments, and the charm, wit and appeal
of the Andalusian people.
The Costa de la Luz is comprised of sand
and whitewash. Its rivers separate into arms before reaching
the sea and both the land and the sea mix together in the
muds flats, flood channels and saltworks. The name, Costa
de la Luz, comes from the intensely bright light which helps
to emphasize the neatness of the streets, the whitewash on
the walls, the golden hues of the sand dunes and the silvery
reflection of the sea, the only greyish tone to be found in
this land predominated by colours.
Moving inland we encounter a great variety
of different sceneries. There are wild mountain ranges, fertile
farmlands, pasturelands where fierce bulls graze, vineyards
famed throughout the world and hidden-away towns where time
passes at a lingering pace. Springtime is an explosion of
flowers, popular festivals and festivities held at local shrines.
Wintertime -being cool and sunny- helps attract millions of
birds to the area.
Costa del Sol: Granada, Malaga and Cadiz
del Sol includes about 300 km of the Spanish Mediterranean
Coast belonging to the Provinces of Granada, Malaga and Cadiz.
Recently, the Granada Province coastline was redesignated
as the Costa Tropical.
It is protected from the northern winds by
a mountain chain which sometimes reaches down to the edge
of the sea. This privileged coast consists of a series of
large beaches, coves half-hidden among cliffs, sports harbours
and fishing grounds. The mild climate, scant rainfall and
the sea breeze produce a semitropical vegetation with frequent
palm-trees, cypresses, oleander and hibiscus.
The proximity of very different countryside
- mountains, valleys full of orchards and the sea - is undoubtedly
one of the main attractions of this coast, which has all the
attractive features of the Mediterranean scenery and culture.
Costa de Almeria: Almeria
of Almeria is situated in the southeast of the
Iberian Peninsula, on the shores of the Mediterranean. It
covers an area of 8,774km2 and comprises a great many geographic
contrasts, including long beaches with small coves, desert
areas and others with a varied vegetation, and high mountains
with extensive plains. The passing of time has also had a
treat influence on the landscape.
In Almeria it is therefore possible to find
modern and bustling tourist centres as well as those natural
areas where man has scarcely left his mark. Almeria enjoys
a warm and dry Mediterranean climate, with little rain and
a large number of hours of sun per year (more than 3,000 hours).
The temperatures throughout the year are
mild reaching no lower than an average of 13º C in winter,
and no more than an average of 25º C in summer. This mild
climate allows the visitor to enjoy all the possibilities
available within the province at any time of the year.
Calida is not just the Mar Menor, or Aguilas, or
Mazarron or any of its other summer resort areas. It is also
that long section of the Spanish coast where the rugged landscape
of the mountains extends its deserted tranquillity to the
It is also a horizon of oleander, prickly
pears and wild palmetto and the occasional watchtower in ruins
which reminds us of the danger of pirates who sailed to these
shores many years ago to fill up their ships with booty. The
squawking of the seagulls and the humming of the cicadas are
sometimes the only sounds to disturb this bright atmosphere.
Blanca or White Coast, which extends along that
section of the Mediterranean coast which corresponds to the
province of Alicante, is made up of two clearly differentiated
scenic sectors. To the North, a curtain of mountains runs
parallel to the sea, descending at times to form cliffs; to
the South, a vast plain of sand patches, palm trees and salt
deposits make up the backdrop for the beaches.
The traveller can choose any of the corners
of this coast, from the most bustling and cosmopolitan to
those which still maintain their rural air beside the sea.
In any case, the trip to the nearby regions is well worth
the venture for they make up a fine representation of the
typical Mediterranean countryside. From the valleys, which
are covered with stepped orchards and keep alive its Moorish
past, to the palm trees of unmistakable African origin, the
horizons of the Costa Blanca offer the most varied attractions.
Costa del Azahar: Castellon
Castellon lies on the Mediterranean
coast and is the most northern of the provinces
that form the Community of Valencia. The Costa del Azahar
is an area of great contrasts, as any traveller who heads
there in search of something more than the typical tourist
attactions will soon find out. Some of these contrasts are
a direct result of the typical geographic phenomena.
Although the capital of the province is known
as Castellon de la Plana, the province as a whole is more
mountainous than flat. In addition, as opposed to the coastline,
which takes the form of an endless carpet of creenery with
orange plantations interwined, the inland landscape is of
a more rugged and wild nature.
There are areas steeped in history and full
of fine monuments, as well as extraordinarily beautiful sites
which, luckily, have not been spoilt by the hand of man and
which are the same today as they were many hundreds of years
The colour of gold -soft, warm and bright-
is predominant alone, the marine littoral in the southern
part of Catalonia and has rightly given it the name of Costa
Dorada (Golden Coast).
The golden hue acquired by the fine sands
of its beaches is due to their facing southeast as well as
the intensity of the sun's rays. The situation of the beaches,
open to the sun, provides them with the maximum amount of
sunlight throughout the day during each of the seasons of
the year. Add to this the protection offered by the nearby
mountain range just off the coast and a benign and stable
climate is assured all year round. The beaches are huge, with
abundant fine sand sinking into the sea in a soft slope, allowing
ample areas for safely going into the water.
This type of beaches, along with the numerous
apartments for rent, make the Costa Dorada a choice area for
family holidays, very appropriate for children and elderly
persons and suited to those seeking peace and quietness.
Costa Brava: Girona
Brava, geographically bound by the Mediterranean
Sea and the Pyrenees, is a name which has become classical
and refers to the coast of the Province of Girona including
the regions of Alt Emporda, Baix Emporda and Selva of Catalonia
Nature, climate and history seem to be rivals
in the creation of a strangely attractive environment, hard
to grasp, but captivating. Against the blue, green and navy
blue of the sea, there is the exuberant contrast of the vegetation,
which reaches down to the very edge of the sea or sometimes
climbs the steep cliffs, while on other occasions it comes
close to the beaches, casting a green light on the fine golden
sands which stand out from the ochre-coloured surroundings
The main role of the scenery is supported
by an annual mean temperature of 16ºC with moderate rainfall
and 2500 hours of sunshine a year illuminating the traces
of history and art which point to a remarkable past and are
only the visible shapes of a reality with a hidden heartbeat
that needs discovering.