Thanks to its ample coastline there are hundreds of incredible beaches in Spain. With so many options, choosing where to go can often be a troublesome decision. To save you the pain of searching for your perfect stretch of sand, here’s our round-up of the best beaches in Spain.
The first two, Calarreona and La Higuérica, have fine sands and are backed by dunes and the odd villa. Travel 6km south of Águilas and you'll find the ravishing back-to-back sandy coves of Cala Carolina and Cala Cocedores. The coast here is completely wild, and the beaches are simply superb.
The area immediately in front of the town is the family beach. Up to the northwest, you can walk to some more sheltered coves, while across the river to the southeast is a topless and nudist area. For more take a look at 9 special places to stay in Andalucia.
On this tailor-made trip to Andalucía you will discover the best of Andalucía's breathtaking palaces, churches, museums, vineyards, and more, as you travel through spectacular scenery dotted with pueblos blancos and bordered by rugged mountains and coast en route to Granada, Seville, Ronda and Jerez de la Frontera.
Your first view of Bolonia will be its magnificent windswept Playa de Bolonia with golden, powder-sand stretching for a kilometre to the west until it meets the Duna de Bolonia, a spectacular 30m high sand dune.
Even in the depths of winter, this beach is usually busy with walkers and playing children. While on summer days every inch tends to be covered in roasting flesh. Swimmers escape the crowds by heading out to platforms moored offshore. Slightly further out, a little pyramidal island, the Isla de Santa Clara, is accessible via ferries that set off from near the aquarium.
Do you want to explore the highlights in Spain while staying in nature at the same time? Look no further. Start your tailor-made Spanish adventure in Barcelona before heading off to the mountains - drive your rental car to Andorra and further on to Basque Country. Decide between driving yourself or guided tours.
Planning a romantic getaway? Our Spanish Honeymoon tailor-made trip takes you through the cultural city of Seville, then on to Córdoba and Granada, home of the stunning Alhambra Palace. Next, you'll visit Granada and the Albayzin Arab quarter, then enjoy a stunning hot-air balloon ride, before ending your trip with a luxury boat trip from Marbella.
Around the headland are two smaller and often quieter beaches, Camello and La Concha. Playa de la Magdalena is 350m long, and has all the facilities you need for a comfortable beach holiday.
This beach is a major surfing destination where you’ll find boards to rent and a summer campsite. With a stop at Pedreña en route this is one of the best beaches in Spain.
El Sardinero stretched for two magnificent kilometres, and is itself divided at high tide into two separate sections, Primera to the south and Segunda to the north.
Backed by shrub-carpeted sand dunes, Playa Arenales is one of the best beaches in Spain as, due to its location 12km south of Alicante, is far quieter, and much more pleasant than those closer to the city.
This clam-shaped bay is one of the most glorious in the Mediterranean and one of the best beaches in Spain. It has completely unspoilt golden sands and, accessible only by a dirt track, there is no development whatsoever. Cars are not allowed in peak season, but there is a bus.
The Illa de San Martiño, is an off-limits bird sanctuary. The other two, Illa do Monte Ayudo and Illa do Faro, are joined by a narrow causeway of sand, which cradles a placid lagoon on its inland side.
It’s well worth stopping at the Praia As Catedrais — where low tide reveals some extraordinary natural arches, towering from a stark landscape. The waves are usually too strong for swimming, but it’s an unforgettable spot for coastal hiking, along a network of boardwalks.
Cala d’Hort has one of the most spectacular settings in the Balearics. Directly opposite is the startling, vertiginous rock-island of Es Vedrà, while the beach is backed by the steep Savinar, a defence tower built in 1763 – it’s also known as Torre d’en Pirata (the pirate tower).
The bay’s alluring, translucent waters make an idyllic place for a dip, and offer rich snorkelling around the rocky fringes of the inlet; it’s a short swim across to another tiny pebbly cove.
Southern Spain has been a busy tourist destination for many years. This self-drive tailor-made trip to the cities, mountains and beaches of Northern Spain avoids the touristy area along the southern Spanish coast, instead opting to take in the culture of the north and its natural beauty and the rugged beaches and coast.
In between, a natural offshore lava reef acts as a wave break, calming the waters and protecting the marine life that makes Las Canteras a top snorkelling spot. It’s a good place for families as children can bathe in the shallows, overseen by lifeguards, while parents take the sun from their hammocks.
If you are interested in travelling to the Canary Islands, check out our guide to the best beaches in Gran Canaria.
There are two beaches to choose from at each end of the promenade – Maspalomas and the smaller Meloneras, each with long stretches of sand, perfect for taking a dip in the clear waters of the Atlantic. Discerning locals come here for the tranquillity, so you know it’s good.
If you're looking for things to do in Spain, explore our list of the best things to do and see in Spain.
Ready for a trip to Spain? Check out the snapshot The Rough Guide to Spain. If you travel further in Spain, read more about the best time to go, the best places to visit and best things to do in Spain.
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