This autonomous community sits on the Mediterranean coast and has a plethora of fantastic sites, beautiful coastal villages, and stunning seaside resorts. Murcia has an economy that is primarily based on the production of fruit and vegetables, but it is also a popular tourist destination and has an extensive history. Furthermore, this region is increasingly becoming known for its production of fine wines and olive oil. If you are stopping in this area of Spain, the following presents some of the top locations to visit in and around Murcia.
Aguilas is a fantastic coastal resort and is a great place to base yourself in the Murcia region. This municipality has everything – beautiful golden beaches, a plethora of high-quality hotels, a gorgeous port full of fishing boats, and even its own castle. The Playa de Poniente is the premier beach in Aguilas and stretches for over 1km and is a great place to relax in the Mediterranean sun. Don't forget to head on over to Punta Negra and walk along the walls of the Castillo de San Juan, or check out one of the restaurants along the Paseo de Parra.
Cartagena is both a major tourist destination and also a naval base that is located further up the coast from Aguilas. This city has some superb historical sites and a myriad of attractions. The most notable sites include the ancient Roman Theatre and the Cartagena Roman ruins, the beautiful Romanesque city hall, and the Art Noveau Gran Hotel. Furthermore, you can walk along the original city walls or head on down to the public beach at El Portus.
3. Los Alcazares
If you are looking for a quieter retreat and a place to relax, head on over to the former fishing village of Los Alcazares. This beautiful village is located to the northeast of Cartagena and has a great deal to offer for those who travel here. Many people visit Los Alcazares for its stunning stretch of golden beach which runs practically the whole length of the town. Aside from the beach, you can also find a superb array of restaurants, bars, and cafes from which you can enjoy a drink or some traditional Mediterranean cuisine.
4. Sierra Espuña Regional Park
Although Murcia is primarily known for its beautiful coastline, this region also has some amazing in-land attractions and landscapes. The Sierra Espuna regional park covers some 25,000 hectares and has been a protected area since the 1930's. Much of this gorgeous landscape is covered by pine forests and dotted with over 20 different mountains. Throughout the park, you can find a multitude of hiking and cycling trails waiting to be explored. For the adventurous or nature lover, there is no better place in Murcia to visit – head on out with a bicycle or take some hiking gear and uncover this gorgeous regional park.
Located inland from the coast of Murcia, Lorca is a beautiful town full of historical buildings and quaint Mediterranean architecture. The main feature of this town is the sublime Lorca Castle which stands resolutely on the top of a hill just outside the town. This fortification was a key point of contention during the wars of the Christians and Muslims and today it remains in fantastic condition. Aside from the castle complex, Lorca also features a bullfighting ring, several large open squares such as the Plaza de Colon and several interesting museums.
Yecla is a quieter town that is less visited by tourists – you can find this beautiful commune to the northeast of Murcia approximately an hours drive from the coast. Yecla is known as an agricultural hub but it is also a producer of wine and many people come here to sample the local produce. Walking through the town center you can enjoy some beautiful squares such as the Plaza Mayor and the Plaza Espana. Furthermore, buildings such as the Basilica de la Purisima Concepcion and the town hall have a great history and charm
7. La Manga
Murcia has a strange feature known as Mar Menor – this stretch of inland water is enclosed by a long split of land known as La Manga. This thin stretch of land covers over 21km of land but is only 100m wide at its widest point. La Manga is packed full of holiday resorts, restaurants, bars and attractions and is a vibrant place with a beautiful stretch of beach that is open to the Mediterranean Sea.
If you enjoy water sports also, La Manga has a host of operators providing sports such as windsurfing, sailing, and canoeing. For a change of scenery and the chance to visit an unusual part of Murcia, La Manga is a superb location to stay at.
8. Lo Pagan
Lo Pagan is situated at the northern end of Mar Menor on the Mediterranean coast of Murcia. This small town has joined forces with neighboring San Pedro del Pinatar and is a true seaside location perfect for a mix of relaxation and fun. Armed with an array of hotels, restaurants and beach bars, Lo Pagan is family friendly and a pleasant place to stay. One of the main attractions here are the immense Salt pools of San Pedro; these bizarre red and pink colored pools are full of salt and brine deposits and it is possible to walk along much of the pathways that link the various pools together.
As you can see, Murcia is a region that is simply bursting with beautiful and charming places to visit. It is easy to see why this area remains a popular tourist destination on the southern coast of Spain – the combination of gorgeous coastal towns, quaint inland communes, and sublime Mediterranean landscapes are a true delight. If you are traveling to Murcia, consider hiring a vehicle from Drivalia to visit all of these fantastic locations!