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Granada Travel Guide - Beaches

Granada Beaches

The Costa Tropical, situated between the Costa del Sol of Málaga and the Costa de Almería, is a priviledged strip of coastline which boasts the very best conditions and attractions necessary to provide an excellent holiday. Its situation on the Mediterranean, its closeness to Africa and to the Sierra Nevada, with the highest peaks on the Peninsula, protect the Costa Tropical from the cold northerly winds. The result is a subtropical micro-climate, with 320 days of sunshine a year and an average temperature of around 20ºC, where all kinds of tropical fruit is grown in its lush valleys.

Cliffs, coves and long beaches make up the landscape of this coveted coastline, conquered by numerous civilisations. Phoenicians, Romans and Arabs have fought over it and left behind traces of their cultures.

San Cristóbal in Almuñécar

The Costa Tropical has six tourist centres - La Herradura, Almuñécar, Salobreña, Motril, Castell de Ferro and La Rábita - boasting a good tourist network where countless sports can be practiced: windsurfing, surfing, scuba diving, fishing, sailing, waterskiing, golf, tennis, squash and horse-riding. The Sierra Nevada, at more than 3,000 metres high and only a short distance from the coast, is a paradise for alpine skiing and mountaineering.
Sheltered by a small hill, Almuñecar is the westernmost town along the Costa Tropical. 3000 years ago, the seafaring Phoenicians discovered a paradise in Almuñecar and settled here. The Arab Castle, nowadays a cemetery, is built upon Roman fortifications, standing on a hill overlooking the whole town.

From the same period, the town centre contains the remains of houses of the town walls, arches and water tanks. A long flight of steps built on the Peñon (Rock) leads up to the Mirador de la Cruz, a marvellous viewing point over the bay. A well developed tourist infrastructure covering 26 beaches is enough to satisfy the most demanding visitor.

Subtropical crops behind Salobreña and its Castle

Moving out from Almuñecar, the road winds upwards along a cliff leading to the viewing point over Salobreña; the town is built upon a hill, crowned by a strategically placed fortress. Below the town, a leafy plain of tropical crops runs along the coastline of transparent blue.

It is worth admiring the marvellous architectural ensemble of white houses, church and castle. In the steep, winding streets, sprinkled with the colour of geraniums, one may breathe in the town's Arab past.

A half-submerged rock in the Mediterranean separates Salobreña's two main beaches: La Playa del Peñon, which caters for the majority of the population (the most facilities and the best atmosphere are to be found here), and the Playa de la Guardia, a long, wild beach stretching out between fields of crops and the sea. Beautiful coves, easily accessible from the sea, make for great locations for diving or sunbathing.

Crossing 6 km of the green plain, one arrives in Motril, nerve centre of the area. With 50,000 inhabitants, the town is undergoing constant development due to its port, the diffusion of its tropical fruits and the trade in flowers.

Los Pueblos de America Park (Motril)
Poniente Beach (Motril)

The most summery atmosphere in Motril is to be found at the Playa de Poniente, where an extensive tourist infrastructure caters for all needs. One may practice water sports in the marina and nautical club, or attend an animated auction session along the front in the fishing port.

The Playa de Granada provides a relaxing contrast to the Playa de Poniente. Next to the fine sands of this beach is the Costa Tropical's only golf course.

Towards the east is found Torrenueva, and further on, Carchuna and Calahonda, separated by a wide bay between El Cabo Sacratif and the impressive cliffs of Calahonda.


Castell de Ferro, a typical coastal village, has an Arab-origin castle-fortress in the centre, a witness to the historical past of this part of the Costa Tropical.

Castell del Ferro

The route continues through Castillo de Baños, La Mamola, Los Yesos, Melicena, and finally, La Rábita, the easternmost town of the Costa Tropical. Here, the most authentic flavours of rural and seafaring life alternate with excellent tourist installations.

Only a few kilometres to the north is situated La Alpujarra. Scattered with almond trees, vines and chestnuts, the area possesses a varied landscape with the interplay of the white of the snow, the blue sky and the greenery of the plant life.

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