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COSTA BLANCA

The Costa Blanca (White Coast) extends from Oliva/Denia in the north to just south of Torrevieja/Orihuela, incorporating the whole coastline of Alicante, the third and most southerly of the provinces of the Community of Valencia. This area has benefitted from a major investment in infrastructure, with the recently opened international terminal at Alicante airport and the high-speed rail links to Valencia, Murcia and Madrid, opened in 2012. The AP-7 motorway follows the coastline, providing excellent access, with drive-times to both the southern and northern extremes of the Costa Blanca less than an hour from the city of Alicante. From a real estate perspective the Costa Blanca became popular towards the height of the property boom, providing an alternative to Marbella in terms of natural beauty, but with lower prices. The Costa Blanca can be divided into two distinct areas, either side of Alicante. The appearance, topography and style of development of these two areas are distinct and this has had a bearing on the types of properties that are available and their price.

COSTA BLANCA NORTH

The coastline between Denia and Alicante is indisputably the most beautiful and picturesque part, with impressive mountain ranges rolling down to a dramatic coastline, interspersed with pine forests, small coves and wide bays framing some of Europe’s most outstanding blue-flag beaches. The fishing towns of Javea, Moraira Calpe and Altea all lie along this part of the coast and combine a relaxed, laid-back Spanish lifestyle with a cosmopolitan feel, with cafes and restaurants alongside their sleepy fishing ports, expansive sandy beaches dotted with beach bars in the summer, ancient castles and old towns with narrow streets lined with boutique shops. The countryside in this area is also famous for its winemaking, and ancient vineyards can be seen lining the hills and valleys. There is a plethora of activities to enjoy here, ranging from swimming, sailing and diving to hill walking, cycling or getting a game of golf on one of the numerous courses. Alternatively you can just relax and enjoy the scenery while partaking of the local cuisine and wine.

With its undulating landscape and dramatic coastline the northern part of the Costa Blanca tends to be more residential, with fewer properties, and here you are likely to find villas, occupying independent plots of land, or smaller urbanizations of apartments and townhouses overlooking the sea.

COSTA BLANCA SOUTH

The Costa Blanca South extends from Alicante down to Torrevieja and borders on the Costa Calida. Being generally flatter than the Costa Blanca North, this area lends itself more to walking and cycling, which makes it very popular for both families with young children and the elderly. Dotted with tourist towns such as Santa Pola, Guardamar, Torrevieja and Orihuela Costa, there are myriad facilities and services to hand, while most of the Costa Blanca’s best beaches tend to be just a stone’s-throw away. Slightly inland from the coast are the towns of Rojales, Ciudad Quesada and La Marina. Here you can enjoy the best of both worlds, taking part in the typical Spanish way of life just a few minutes away from the bustling coastal towns. Citrus fruit orchards and plantations of palm trees are the hallmark of the inland areas of this southern part of the Costa Blanca, while cultural centres include the city of Elche and Orihuela.

Property-wise you tend to find large urbanizations consisting of townhouses and apartments, close to both services and the beach, while a little further inland there are more villas, located on independent plots of land and country-style houses.

COSTA BRAVA

Said to be Spain’s best kept secret, the Costa Brava (Wild or Untamed Coast) extends 132 miles, from the French border all the way to Blanes, north of Barcelona. The area near the French border is characterised by its undulating terrain, cliffs that fall steeply down to the Mediterranean Sea and is dotted with delightful coves. Further south the land is gentler and the coastline is defined by the gentle curve of its large sandy bays.

The area of the Costa Brava is renowned for its natural beauty and includes three national parks. The history and culture of the region is also widely varied and fascinating for those who take an interest in the heritage of newly-discovered destinations. The countryside, inland from the coast, is home to a number of marvellously preserved medieval towns, brimming with romantic charm.

Girona, the capital of the Costa Brava, is a city replete with contrasts, within the old city walls modern buildings rub shoulders with ancient churches, cathedrals, Moorish baths, museums and the splendidly preserved Jewish quarter, where small shops, boutiques and fashionable cafes abound.

With its balmy climate, beautiful landscape and excellent beaches, several areas of the Costa Brava have been developed as popular tourist destinations. There are a large number of holiday resorts with apartment complexes in the many seaside towns such as Blanes, Tossa de Mar or Lloret.

However, there are other parts of the coast that remain relatively untouched by tourist developments and where the landscape is dominated by traditional fishing towns and villages.

COSTA CÁLIDA- COSTA DE ALMERÍA

The Costa Calida/Almería extends some 155 miles from the beach at El Mojon, on the border with Alicante, to Carolina beach, in Aguilas, a few miles from the province of Almeria. The coastline of Murcia is blessed with 315 days of sunshine a year and average temperatures of 17ºC.

One of the main tourist centres on the Costa Calida/Almeria is the Mar Menor, a saltwater lagoon of over 83 square miles, separated from the Mediterranean by a 24 km wide strip of sand. Due to its shallow depth and calm waters the Mar Menor is extremely popular for families with young children, while the location also provides near perfect conditions for those that enjoy sailing, windsurfing and kite surfing.

For golf lovers the Costa Calida/Almeria is fast becoming a serious alternative to the Costa del Sol as a golfing destination, with a large number of newly built resorts offering championship standard, signature designed golf courses, luxurious accommodation and myriad facilities.

Almeria is one of the sunniest areas in the whole of Europe with around 3000 hours of sun a year. The average annual temperature is 18/19ºC, and in winter the water off the coast is warmer than the air temperature, which encourages many people to take a dip at this time of year. The climate in Almeria is subtropical, Mediterranean, warm and dry. This area’s most defining feature is its bright, cloudless skies. The mild climate of Almeria has made it a popular destination with tourists all year around, allowing visitors to enjoy beaches, sports and outdoor activities, as well as cultural trips to historic and artistic heritage sites, the fascinating scenery, countryside and caves.

COSTA DE LA LUZ

The Costa de la Luz area has almost completely escaped the attention of developers and as a result bucks any preconceptions you may have about a typical Spanish “Costa”, offering miles of beaches unspoilt by development, extending west from the Straits of Gibraltar towards Portugal. This coast mainly consists of towns and villages of whitewashed houses, on magnificent, long sandy beaches surrounded by dunes.

The scarcity of holiday resorts, or high density developments, has meant that this part of Spain has managed to avoid the mass-tourism that has spoilt some other parts of the Spanish coastline.

Almost all of the holidaymakers on the “Coast of Light” are Spaniards, from Madrid or Barcelona, who come down in July and August for their family holidays. As a result the local shops, bars and restaurants very much cater to the national market, allowing any foreign visitors to the area to savour a truly Spanish experience.

Such property development as has taken place here consists of small, tasteful coastal developments and golf resorts, combining low-rise apartments, townhouses and the occasional villa.

COSTA DE VALENCIA

The Costa de Valencia stretches from the Costa del Azahar, in the north, to the Costa Blanca, in the south, and includes miles of golden sandy beaches and beautiful bays. The calm crystalline waters of the Mediterranean provide plenty of opportunities for aquatic sports, while the area’s climate and geography lend themselves to other traditional sporting activities, such as walking, paragliding, canoeing or golf.

The city of Valencia is the regional capital, Spain’s third largest city, and boasts many modern cultural and historical sites, especially its City of the Arts and Sciences, along with numerous museums, exhibitions and art galleries. The local cuisine is outstanding and the nightlife is unique. Valencia has a well-developed tourist infrastructure and excellent beaches, combined with a warm, friendly and welcoming environment, making it one of Spain’s most popular destinations.

COSTA DEL AZAHAR

The Costa del Azahar (Orange Blossom Coast) is the province of Castellon’s 74 mile stretch of coast, running from Vinaròs down to Almenara. This is one of Spain’s most beautiful and unspoilt regions, offering incredible expansive beaches, beautiful towns and lush countryside, teeming with the orange and lemon groves from which it takes its name.

There are miles of white sandy beach, interspersed with hidden coves and cloaked in pine forests. The waters off the Costa del Azahar are perfect for diving, while the region’s protected parks and nature reserves provide plenty of scope for those who enjoy outdoor pursuits and rural tourism.

Its capital, Castellon de la Plana, is the most popular resort, while Peníscola, Benicàssim and Burriana are other well known seaside towns. Peniscola is the leading beach holiday resort, offering a multitude of facilities and a fine sandy beach. Oropesa del Mar is quieter, although it also enjoys an established, modern tourist infrastructure.

In this area you tend to see apartment and townhouse holiday complexes, usually only a stone’s throw from the beach, while independent villas and houses on agricultural land can also be found a few miles inland.

COSTA DEL MARESME/BARCELONA

The Costa del Maresme is the name given to the coast just north of Barcelona, stretching over 33 miles from Blanes to Montgat, with a landscape that is characterised by expansive sandy beaches, attractive fishing towns and popular tourist centres.

The attractions offered by this coastline will satisfy your every need, from beautiful unspoilt beaches to protected natural parks, from charming towns and villages to larger towns and the city of Barcelona itself, providing myriad facilities for families, culture and modernism.

With its pleasant climate, the Mediterranean beauty of the landscape and its idyllic location the Costa del Maresme has become a popular destination for both national and international visitors. Its benign temperatures and unspoilt weather, lasting nearly all summer long, ensures that it is an ideal location for making the most of the beach, even though there are plenty of opportunities to take full advantage of the art and culture provided by the area’s villages and towns, as well as the beauty of its inland scenery.

It is often claimed that Barcelona is one of the best cities in Europe and, as you can imagine, Spain’s second largest city has a great deal to offer to both visitors and residents alike. Barcelona’s multi-faceted centre combines the extremely old and the strikingly modern. The narrow medieval streets of the old city, Ciutat Vella, are embellished by stunning examples of modernist architecture, many museums and art galleries, outdoor markets, restaurants, shops and churches. Fantastic Spanish food, a flamboyant culture and a wonderful climate all combine to make Barcelona a truly magnificent city.

COSTA DEL SOL

This is an area that is renowned throughout the world for its golf, with 33 functioning courses. The area benefits from a well established infrastructure, featuring a major road network, train links and the recently extended Malaga airport.

The Costa del Sol extends along the coastline of the province of Malaga, one of the eight provinces of Andalusia, from the towns of Nerja, in the east, to Estepona in the west, lying between the lesser-known Costa Tropical and Costa de la Luz. This area once consisted solely of traditional whitewashed Andalusian villages, dotted along the coast and inland, against the backdrop of the Sierra Blanca Mountains. The city of Malaga and the towns of Torremolinos, Benalmádena, Fuengirola, Mijas, San Pedro de Alcantara, Estepona and Marbella are all on this coastline.

The area was first discovered in the 1970´s and has since developed to become a key international tourism destination, not only because of its beautiful beaches and myriad golf courses, but also due to its heritage and infrastructure. The area now comprises a series of resorts and developments that form a ribbon along the coast, consisting of low-rise, whitewashed villas and developments of apartment blocks designed in the local Andalusian architectural style.

While the area is most famous for the town of Marbella, renowned for being the playground of the super rich, and brings to mind such resorts as Puerto Banus and the Golden Mile, the Costa del Sol has much else to offer, including a plethora of world-class golf courses, wide sandy beaches, national parks, ski resorts and the cultural centre of Malaga, with its own particular heritage.

COSTA DORADA

The Costa Dorada (Golden Coast) is a stretch of coastline that encompasses the province of Tarragona, Catalonia, running 57 miles from Cunit in the north to Alcanar in the south. A narrow strip of land lying between the mountains and the sea, The Costa Dorada is burgeoning with peaceful agricultural towns, coastal fishing villages and popular tourist resorts located alongside the area’s myriad beaches, with their fine golden sands and clear shallow waters.

Cambrils, Salou and Sitges are among the most popular tourist resorts, each with its own contrasting ambience, ranging from a modern resort with a wide range of tourist attractions, to a quiet seaside town with charming, narrow streets, lined with historic buildings and the typical tapas bars.

Inland you can explore the medieval monasteries and castles, enjoy breathtaking landscapes, walk the rugged mountain paths, or visit nature reserves, such as the unique delta of the River Ebro. The Costa Dorada is also famous for its golf, with 5 functioning courses in the area, while families with children can also enjoy a day out at the famous Portaventura theme park.

BALEARIC ISLANDS

This marvellous Mediterranean archipelago, which lies off the southeast coast of mainland Spain, is best known for its four principal islands, each of outstanding natural beauty. With an excellent climate, near perfect beaches and a heady contrast between island serenity and frenzied partying, the Balearics have become one of Spain’s favourite holiday destinations.

Each of the four main islands has its own distinctive character and, between them, they cater to just about everybody’s tastes:

Mallorca is the largest of the islands, combining a little of everything. Its capital, Palma, is one of the most beguiling of Spain’s small cities, teeming with chic bars, restaurants and discos. However, apart from the party scene, Mallorca can also boast a stunning landscape, including rugged mountains slanting down towards a dramatic coastline of unspoiled sandy coves surrounded by rocky cliffs.

Ibiza is world renowned for its club scene, attracting millions of party-goers each year. The island is unique with its historic town centre, home to world famous discos and clubs, while the rest of the island, particularly in the north, is markedly serene, with pine forests and fertile plains, interspersed with sleepy villages and almond groves.

Unlike its sisters Menorca is a haven of peace, best known for its isolated, picture-postcard beaches and coves. The second largest of the islands, Menorca has very much shunned development, as can be seen in the sheer natural beauty of its pine forests and jagged coastline, littered with stone monuments dating back to its Neolithic past. The islands two main towns, Mahon and Ciutadella, are attractive old port towns with picturesque marinas, narrow streets and squares plus a wealth of discreet bars and restaurants.

Only 12 miles long, Formentera is a true island, in the sense that it can only be reached by boat. The spectacular beaches, with their crystalline waters, and the absence of bustling holiday resorts make this a haven for those seeking stillness and tranquillity.

CANARY ISLANDS

This magical chain of paradisiacal islands, jutting out from the waters of the Atlantic Ocean, is just 67 miles from the coast of Africa and enjoys a wonderful climate of clear blue skies and mild temperatures throughout the year.

The archipelago consists of seven main islands and, perhaps surprisingly, each island has its own particular landscape, although they are all marked by strikingly beautiful scenery: Five of the islands are either wholly or partly listed as UNESCO biosphere reserves due to their tremendous ecological interest.

Apart from their differing landscapes each of the islands also has a unique character, which means that everybody’s’ requirements can be met, whether you are looking for adventure in the great outdoors, to practice marine sports, go sunbathing on the beach, or explore local culture and history.

Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands, and also the longest and best established tourist destination. The nature reserves and rural parks of El Teide, Anaga and Teno draw huge numbers of visitors, while the opportunity to practice marine sports such as sailing, kite surfing and diving abound. Playa de las Americas and Los Cristianos are the island’s busiest tourist hubs, while Costa Adeje is quieter and much more relaxed.

Gran Canary, often called a miniature continent, is a place of vivid contrasts, bursting with stunning landscapes and scenery, which can also offer lively and exciting tourist resorts, such as Maspalomas, Puerto Rico or Playa del Ingles, which attract visitors from Northern Europe all year round. Close to the coast of Africa, the island enjoys endless cloudless days and perfect temperatures in which to enjoy the 500 plus beaches that dot its coastline. The climate is also perfect for outdoor activities such as cycling, hiking, trekking and practicing a plethora of marine sports. For those seeking a more relaxed time there are a number of small coastal towns, such as Puerto de Mogan, which are perfect for their quiet laidback scene.

La Palma, “La isla bonita” or the beautiful Island, lies on the less populated western edges of the archipelago. Its lush green landscape and unspoilt natural resources attract eco-travellers from all over the world, while its endless and cloudless skies make it one of the best places in the northern hemisphere for stargazing.

Fuerteventura lies on the eastern edges of the archipelago and is much more relaxed and serene than its larger neighbours. Ancient hills and plains stretch down to over 150 glorious beaches of white or black sand, which can be explored while swimming, snorkelling or kayaking.

Lanzarote, dubbed the ‘Hawaii of Europe’, is the 4th largest of the Canary Islands and lies just 80 miles from the cat of Africa, the most easterly of all the islands. Flights to the island from the UK take around 4 hours. Lanzarote is famous for its black sandy beaches and its stark pink, purple and ochre tinged volcanic outcrops. Listed as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, which ensures the protection of the coastline, this island is one of the newest landscapes on the planet, having been “reborn” through eruptions in the 18th century. It is an island of vivid contrasts, offering quaint fishing towns and villages, side-by-side with tourist hotspots such as Playa Blanca, Costa Teguise and Puerto del Carmen. Some of the main outdoor activities involve walking and trekking, although Lanzarote is also gaining a worldwide reputation as a perfect spot for the practice of surfing and kite surfing.

CANARY ISLANDS

This magical chain of paradisiacal islands, jutting out from the waters of the Atlantic Ocean, is just 67 miles from the coast of Africa and enjoys a wonderful climate of clear blue skies and mild temperatures throughout the year.

The archipelago consists of seven main islands and, perhaps surprisingly, each island has its own particular landscape, although they are all marked by strikingly beautiful scenery: Five of the islands are either wholly or partly listed as UNESCO biosphere reserves due to their tremendous ecological interest.

Apart from their differing landscapes each of the islands also has a unique character, which means that everybody’s’ requirements can be met, whether you are looking for adventure in the great outdoors, to practice marine sports, go sunbathing on the beach, or explore local culture and history.

Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands, and also the longest and best established tourist destination. The nature reserves and rural parks of El Teide, Anaga and Teno draw huge numbers of visitors, while the opportunity to practice marine sports such as sailing, kite surfing and diving abound. Playa de las Americas and Los Cristianos are the island’s busiest tourist hubs, while Costa Adeje is quieter and much more relaxed.

Gran Canary, often called a miniature continent, is a place of vivid contrasts, bursting with stunning landscapes and scenery, which can also offer lively and exciting tourist resorts, such as Maspalomas, Puerto Rico or Playa del Ingles, which attract visitors from Northern Europe all year round. Close to the coast of Africa, the island enjoys endless cloudless days and perfect temperatures in which to enjoy the 500 plus beaches that dot its coastline. The climate is also perfect for outdoor activities such as cycling, hiking, trekking and practicing a plethora of marine sports. For those seeking a more relaxed time there are a number of small coastal towns, such as Puerto de Mogan, which are perfect for their quiet laidback scene.

La Palma, “La isla bonita” or the beautiful Island, lies on the less populated western edges of the archipelago. Its lush green landscape and unspoilt natural resources attract eco-travellers from all over the world, while its endless and cloudless skies make it one of the best places in the northern hemisphere for stargazing.

Fuerteventura lies on the eastern edges of the archipelago and is much more relaxed and serene than its larger neighbours. Ancient hills and plains stretch down to over 150 glorious beaches of white or black sand, which can be explored while swimming, snorkelling or kayaking.

Lanzarote, dubbed the ‘Hawaii of Europe’, is the 4th largest of the Canary Islands and lies just 80 miles from the cat of Africa, the most easterly of all the islands. Flights to the island from the UK take around 4 hours. Lanzarote is famous for its black sandy beaches and its stark pink, purple and ochre tinged volcanic outcrops. Listed as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, which ensures the protection of the coastline, this island is one of the newest landscapes on the planet, having been “reborn” through eruptions in the 18th century. It is an island of vivid contrasts, offering quaint fishing towns and villages, side-by-side with tourist hotspots such as Playa Blanca, Costa Teguise and Puerto del Carmen. Some of the main outdoor activities involve walking and trekking, although Lanzarote is also gaining a worldwide reputation as a perfect spot for the practice of surfing and kite surfing.

 

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