Alicante is one of those perennial family favourites. A number one holiday destination for Brits since the early days of package holidays, Alicante guarantees warm sun, sparkling sea and soft sand.
It is located in Spain’s Valencia region. Alicante is a gateway to the south of Spain and the ever-popular resorts – with Blue Flag beaches - such as Torrevieja, Benidorm, Calpe and Altea. The city itself is a fantastic weekend-break destination. Apart from the sun and the laidback Spanish approach to life there are lots of great historic sites to see.
The Old Town Quarter is charming. With buildings that date back hundreds of years, hanging baskets spilling over with colourful flowers, the Town Hall, Cathedral and lots of art museums, it’s a lovely place to spend a few hours.
The Explanada de Espana is a must-see in Alicante. This tiled path – there are nearly one million tricolour marble tiles – is shaded by palm trees. It runs parallel to one of the port wharves and is a popular place to take a stroll in the evenings.
Santa Barbara Castle, which stands on top of Mount Benacantil, is another must-visit. It’s one of Spain’s largest medieval fortresses and has wonderful views of the Bay of Alicante. Get a really clear day and you can see all the way to Tabarca Island.
Naturally, Alicante’s beaches are superb! The Playa of San Juan de Alicante is the longest and widest, a vast sweep of sand that never seems to get crowded.
Postiquet lies at the foot of Mount Benacantil. It’s shady and safe for families with Blue Flag status.
Albufereta offers great water sports, swimming and fishing.
Saladares Beach is also known as Urbanova. It’s quiet and is located at Alicante’s southernmost point.
A trip to Tabarca Island takes just an hour. The island, a protected marine reserve, is studded with little bays to swim in and traditional restaurants to tuck into a hearty fish stew. The must-eats include “caldero” (stewed fish prepared in a huge metal kettle), red mullet, sardines and octopus.