Visiting Alicante Spain for the First Time

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Alicante is located in Spain’s Southeast Costa Blanca and is a popular holiday destination as it enjoys long sunny days right into the autumn months. There is so much to see and do in Alicante and no matter what your budget, there is something for everyone whether you are friends looking for a weekend away, a couple seeking a romantic retreat or a family looking for fun in the sun.

For history lovers

Credit: Suso Sinmiedo
Credit: Suso Sinmiedo

For the best views over the Mediterranean coast, visit Barrio de la Santa Cruz, where visitors can either take an elevator trip, or climb to top of Mount Benacantil, where you will find the Castillo de Santa Barbara (a Medieval castle overlooking the port). Dating back to the 9th century, guests can even take a guided tour of the castle, which is complete with its very own history museum.

For foodies

If you consider yourself a food and wine connoisseur, Alicante offers the very best in cuisine from around the world. For authentic Spanish fare, wander along the Esplanada de Espana in Alicante city centre and visit Los Mejillones de correos. Small plates cost around 3 euros and the patio terrace is a great spot for watching the world go by. Be sure to try their speciality- the mejilliones a la marinera (mussels). The mussels are cooked ‘al vapor’ (steamed) and served in sofrito sauce, which is a tomato, onion and garlic based broth, the chef then adds some of the cooking liquor from the mussels and several handfuls of parsley and lemon juice to finish.

For sun worshippers

Credit: Dom Crossley
Credit: Dom Crossley

Alicante has some of the best beaches in Spain which are particularly popular with scuba divers and snorkelers because of the very clear water and many rocky coves to explore. If you plan to spend the day topping up your tan, head to La Granadella in the resort of Javea. Set between two high cliffs, its shoe horse shape makes it the perfect sun trap and it spans just 220 metres, so out with peak season, it is reasonably secluded. If you are feeling adventurous, you can even hire a boat and head into the bay from as little as 10 euros per hour.

Before you head off on your Spanish getaway, think carefully about where you plan to stay during your trip. If you plan on visiting some of Alicante’s many bars and restaurants, or if you love to shop, the town centre or the Southern Costa Brava is the place to be. If you are seeking something a bit quieter where you can relax and get away from it all, avoid central Alicante and head to the coast. Flights to Alicante are available all year round, and many budget airlines fly there too, so there is something to suit every budget. 

Images by Suso Sinmiedo and flashcurd used under Creative Commons License.

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