White-sand beaches, cities crammed with culture, and some of the best theme parks in Spain – they’re all in store on holidays to Valencia.
All bases covered
The Valencia region, on Spain’s east coast, boasts miles of white-sand beaches, lively resorts packed with bars and restaurants, and cities that give Barcelona and Madrid a run for their money. It’s no wonder it’s such a hit with holidaymakers.
The Costa Blanca – or ‘White Coast’ – runs the full length of the Valencia region. It’s edged with more than 200 kilometres of soft, white-sand beaches, which are lapped by the Mediterranean Sea. When it comes to resorts, Benidorm is the big name here, thanks to its Blue Flag beaches, pretty old town, and party-hard attitude. Away from the beach, you’ve got top theme parks, like Terra Mitica, and white-knuckle waterparks, such as Aqualandia.
City-wise, the Valencia region has 2 big hitters. Alicante is a sophisticated spot, with stylish boutiques, trendy art galleries and a sleek marina. The city of Valencia, meanwhile, is a charming mix of old and new – on the one hand, you’ve got grand palaces and a quaint old quarter, on the other, world-class museums and trendy clubs.
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Even though there’s only a small mountain separating Altea from the Costa Blanca’s loudest resort, Benidorm, the two towns couldn’t be more different. Altea lives life at a much slower pace – neon-lit nightspots make way for seafront tapas bars, and you’ll find traditional restaurants in lieu of Brit-style pubs and fast food joints.
You’ll find the little town of Albir just next to Benidorm. But, while it might share map space with the Costa Blanca’s nightlife capital, the two resorts are poles apart. Albir does things on a much smaller scale – in fact, the town’s biggest draws are its go-slow beach life and its pretty nature walks.
Benidorm didn’t get to be one of Spain’s holiday behemoths for nothing. This town likes to flaunt its best assets – sandy beaches and fun-packed nights – but there’s another side to it, too. Benidorm actually goes all the way back to 1325, so the winding, cobbled old town and Baroque domed church are as authentic as they come.
This small coastal town sits on the northern tip of Spain’s Costa Blanca, neatly pocketed between the mountains and the sea. Originally a fishing village, it’s grown into a lively holiday place – Madrid’s city slickers flock here to parade its palm-lined avenues and eat in the marina restaurants. But the town hasn’t lost its traditional Spanish charm, courtesy of its cobbled streets and old market square.
This little beach town on Spain’s Costa Blanca has a typically Spanish feel – there’s the thousand-year-old castle in the town centre, rustic seafood restaurants along the beach and colourful fishing boats bobbing in the harbour. There’s another side to this place, though – the cosmopolitan marina is dotted with bars, and there are designer boutiques along the tree-lined Carrer Marques de Campo.
The port town of Javea sits in the shadow of Montgo Mountain between Valencia and Alicante. This little haven along Spain’s Costa Blanca boasts an old town area where the Medieval church is the centrepiece and shops, cafés and restaurants work their way along the cobbled streets. Meanwhile, nightlife is set to the rhythm of Spanish and international bands, and the local beaches wave their Blue Flags.