The Area

Our house is in the small town of El Algar which is a few minutes from the coast on the Costa Calida. You may well not have heard of this costa because the Spanish have until recently more or less kept in to themselves. The area is not over developed and staying in the house will give you the opportunity to experience what we like to call the “real” Spain” - but don’t worry that you’ll be at the back of beyond or miles from anywhere because at the same time you will be close to the bars and restaurants of La Manga, the coastal towns of San Javier, San Pedro and Los Alcazares as well as the famous salt water lagoon of the Mar Menor. We have been going there for some years now and yet every time we visit we find wonderful places we have never been to before and we fall in love with it all over again!

The Costa Calida sits on the south east corner of Spain with the Costa Blanca to the north and the Costa Almeria to the south and remains virtually undiscovered by tourists. It runs from Aguilas to San Pedro del Pinatar just above the split of land that forms La Manga and boasts white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, deserted coves and more than 300 days of sunshine a year. Sound good to you? It is!

El Algar is an ordinary rural Spanish town not a tourist resort. It is surrounded by orange and lemon groves and fields growing vegetables – many of which you will find in UK supermarkets. It is 15 minutes from San Javier airport and 90 minutes from Alicante. There are local buses and a regular train service in the area but we recommend that you hire a car and get out and explore this wonderful area.

This part of Spain missed out on the tourist boom that hit the Costa del Sol and that means that the 155 miles (250 kilometres) of coastline are unspoilt and blissfully free of ranks of high-rise apartment blocks and traffic jams but rather they retain a relaxed atmosphere with their clean calm beaches, deserted coves and stunning views. The World Health Organisation has declared Murcia province the cleanest in Spain with the least industrial pollution.

For nature lovers there is the stunning Sierra Espuna National Park and the Sierra Carrascoy mountain range – a paradise for walkers and climbers. If you don’t want to be that active just driving through is brilliant – the views are amazing and the adrenalin rush of the drive along the ridge is pretty full on!

For sporty types there is the famous La Manga Club with international standard golf courses, equestrian and tennis centres and every leisure facility imaginable. There are at least 5 other golf courses within a 30 minute drive as well. Karting, bike hire, horse riding it’s all available locally – and don’t forget the motor biking on the famous Cartagena circuit!

As well as the stunning Mediterranean coast which boasts some of the best diving sites in Europe, we are only minutes away from the Mar Menor, Europe’s largest saltwater lagoon. Not only does it offer ideal paddling for old and young alike but also sailing and windsurfing. The water is wonderfully shallow and so warm that you could swim in it all year long. And it’s good for you too! The health giving properties of its high iodine concentration are believed to help rheumatism, arthritis and skin complaints – if you visit the beaches in nearby Lo Pagan in the summer you’ll see lots of people – locals and visitors alike - covering themselves in the mud.

For city life we are also spoilt for choice. Murcia, the capital of the province is less than an hour away and offers a great flavour of the region’s culture with its wealth of museums, monuments and the wonderful cathedral. Cartagena is closer only 10 mins away, and is the second largest city and a naval port with a heritage to rival that of any European city as it was the last Moorish stronghold in Spain and has Roman ruins too. We love browsing around the many shops and walking along the harbour side looking at all the yachts – or climbing the hill to the castle and looking down over the site of the roman amphitheatre.

Jazz lovers will have heard of the San Javier Jazz Festival that takes place each summer; where better to hear “cool” music than in this beautiful warm climate!

So, whatever you are looking for in a holiday destination I think we can provide it!