An Area Guide to Torrevieja
Stretching along a full 14km of the Costa Blanca coastline, the city of Torrevieja (which translates as ‘Old Tower’) is situated midway between Alicante to the north and Murcia in the south. Once little more than a fishing and salt harvesting village, Torrevieja is now far and away the largest conurbation along the southern part of the Costa Blanca with a population of just over 100,000 people, a number which is dramatically boosted by tourism during the holiday season. With a history stretching back even further than the Roman occupation of Spain, Torrevieja is a bustling, vibrant metropolis which represents a perfect blend of the traditional and the modern.
Until the emergence of tourism in the early 1970’s, the town owed its fame (and success) to the two vividly coloured salt lakes which surround the town. Recognised as the most important salt works of their kind in Europe, even today they continue to produce over 700,000 tonnes of salt a year. These two lakes, one a candy floss pink and the other an emerald green in colour, dominate the geography of the area and form the centrepiece of a spectacular nature reserve called the ‘Salinas de Torrevieja’, which is home to over 100 different types of aquatic, wading and marine birds as well as the famous flocks of flamingos. The nature reserve is also home to the ‘Salt & Sea Museum’ which houses a selection of artwork and models illustrating the evolution and history of salt mining in the area and provides details of all of the trails and walks through the park.
Things to Do in Torrevieja
Sitting on the opposite side of the national N332 coastal road you’ll find the Parque Jardin de las Naciones or ‘Garden of Nations’, an impressive 26,000m2 park dedicated to the nations of Europe and home to a scale map of the entire European continent. As if one map weren’t enough, there is also a park lake which covers some 6,000m2 and forms a second silhouetted outline of the European continent. There’s plenty to keep the children entertained, with a terrarium housing a selection of iguanas and Galapagos, a giant dragon themed slide, swings and play areas whilst animals such as peacocks, chickens and wild birds roam freely. Adults and children alike are also likely to be attracted to the two water parks which can be found in Torrevieja – the Aquapark Flamingo and the Aquopolis – both offering water fun and flumes galore.
The town itself is split into two parts by the main coastal N332 road, with the coastal side running along the edge of the Mediterranean and being home to no less than six beautiful golden sand beaches (the Paseo Maritimo Juan Aparicio, Playa de Los Locos, Playa del Acequion, Playa del Cura and Playa de Los Naufragos), all of which bear the respected Blue Flag accreditation. Visitors to Torrevieja will naturally gravitate towards the marina and promenade which are lined with bars, restaurants and shops and offer the perfect spot to eat, drink and watch the world go by.
As you would expect of a city of Torrevieja’s significance there’s no shortage of entertainment options and the city enjoys a thriving social scene with plenty of established shopping areas and a vibrant nightlife. Boasting more than 560 restaurants Torrevieja embraces culinary diversity, offering foods from every corner of the globe whilst actively promoting traditional Spanish fare. For those looking to indulge in a taste of real Spain, the twice yearly ‘Tapas Route’ is a must, taking in more than 40 restaurants and 170 local tapas dishes it’s a wonderful way to explore the city and enjoy some traditional Spanish hospitality.
For those looking for some retail therapy, the Habaneras commercial centre is an open-air shopping mall with more than 60 shops and restaurants over three floors. Slightly further down the coastline but well worth the 10 minute drive is the La Zenia Boulevard, the largest retail centre on the coastline covering over 160,000m2 and home to more than 150 outlets. Even the most committed shoppers will find plenty to keep them entertained!
Whilst Torrevieja itself is lacking it’s own golf course, golf enthusiasts are still well served with at least 8 courses within a 10 or so minute drive. The renowned Villamartin course is just 9 or 10 minutes away with Las Ramblas, Campoamor, La Finca, Vistabella and Los Colinas (amongst others) all being just a few minutes further afield. Spread your wings even wider and you’ll find a total of 33 magnificent Costa Blanca courses, all within a leisurely 30 minute radius.
Weather in Torrevieja
Blessed with a climate that the World Health Organisation declare to be one of the very healthiest in the world, the area is noted as having ‘as near perfect an environment as it is possible to obtain’ – high praise indeed! Year-round sunshine and low humidity are a perfect combination and with the Costa Blanca enjoying an average annual temperature of 19o, highs of 40o+ and more than 3000 hours of sunshine over 320+ days, few other regions can compete. Water temperatures average 25o even in the autumn meaning you can take a dip in the Med well into late October whilst daytime temperatures often still reach well into the 20’s throughout December making this the perfect spot to escape the British winter!
Properties in Torrevieja
Torrevieja is a relatively well developed area with property on the eastern, city centre area being dominated by traditional Spanish apartments blocks, many of which can rise 6, 7 or more stories. . Although the lakes and nature reserves which enclose Torrevieja form a natural limit to the scope of possible development, there are a number of new build developments currently under construction which offer superb value and include apartments, villas and townhouses.
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