Beach destinations for a single autumn getaway

Just as bicycles are now popular all year round, beaches are not just for summer. They are perfect for walking, to unwind, to play tennis and volleyball or just to sit with a tablet to read, breathe fresh air or watch the sea; beaches and surrounding destinations are a perfect choice for enjoying a different type of Autumn getaway. An idea in which the cold and cozy woolens and dinners for two (or with the family) in front of the fireplace make all the sense in the world.

Of the many coastal destinations of which our country can boast (starting with Cadiz and ending with Santander) are three in which the words ‘Autumn’ and ‘beach’ have formed a very strong link which continues to be developed. Three destinations we can name which are perfect for unwinding are:  Mallorca, Huelva and Almeria.

Mallorca, beyond the sun and the beach

Although passionate about their summer, true Mallorcans (or those who have lived on the island for many years now) confirm that Spring and Autumn are the two best seasons to visit Mallorca and to soak up all its Mediterranean essence.

Banyalbufar, Majorca

With mountainous spots guarded by the Serra de Tramuntana, such as Deia, Valldemosa or Banyalbufar and other coastal areas full of magic such as Can Picafort, Muro and Cala Millor, the island is an ideal place to combine time spent on relaxation with time spent on cultural visits, gastronomy, shopping or water sports.

Where to stay in Mallorca? For its services and location in the most beautiful area of Cala Millor- this month we suggest the Cala Millor Garden Hotel which is definitely one of the best  ‘Adults Only’ hotels in Mallorca.

In search of the Costa de la Luz (Coast of Light)

Totally different in shape, color and layout to the Mediterranean beaches; those that make-up the Huelva coast are equally spectacular. Bathed by the purest waters of the Atlantic and with natural landscapes with dunes and native vegetation, the beaches of Huelva are another option for enjoying an autumn getaway.

Costa de la luz, Huelva

Coastal areas which stand out most on the ‘Coast of Light’ are without a doubt Matalascañas and Mazagon El Rompido, an area where you can find the Playanatural Garden Hotel & Spa, an ‘Adults Only’ hotel overlooking the pristine beaches of Cartaya.

The romantic side of Almería
Leaving aside Valencia and the Mediterranean, Almeria remains a jewel in our sea, further down the coast with beautiful, natural and pristine beaches that can become the perfect place for those wanting to enjoy some days full of relaxation and romance. Which is the most perfect place in the province? Undoubtedly the coastal town of Cabo de Gata with the Cabogata Garden Hotel & Spa as possible accommodation for your stay.

Fun hotels in Spain?

They are a real option. And they are becoming more and more valued amongst travellers. Fun hotels, most of them designed for children, for youngsters and groups of friends, are beach hotels located in famous destinations that normally offer direct access to the beach and important tourist attractions.

They are a real option. There is such a wide variety of fun hotels available that you can even find some of them with private theme parks in the resort, such as the Sol Katmandú Park in Magaluf or the Picapiedra Hotels, of the same hotel chain and located in almost any first class tourist destination: Majorca, Minorca, Canarias… These last ones have been operating for years and they stirred up the traditional concept of hotel for families, incorporating special services for children and activities devoted to children’s entertainment and parents’ relax.

Hotels with friends in Spain

Hotels with friends in Spain

Apart from Sol Hotels, the portfolio of fun hotels for children and friends has grown with new incorporations, such as the Olé Hotels; some Petit Palace urban hotels, which have bet for family rooms in Madrid and Barcelona with bunk beds, Internet and video games; hotels in Majorca, such as the THE FERGUS Resort and some hotels of the chain Garden Hotels.

The concept of fun hotel varies, of course, depending on the public to which it is addressed. Thus, the family hotels that have entertainment as a hallmark try to combine the calmness adults need with the energy of children. In the case of hotels for youngsters, the idea is clear: services related to partying, to the beach, to DJ sessions, live music, cocktails and restaurants open 24 hours and offering brunches at any time of the day.

In this second group, we can include some of the hotels for friends, although we find a category with the same functions but not so bound to partying and music. We are talking about the Adults Only hotels, which offer activities for couples and for those who, travelling as a group, want to enjoy the destination, the sports, the experiences and even knowing new people in the hotel.

Short break to Playa Gaviotas this autumn

Although there isn’t a Gaviotas beach itself, many people know the area of hotels in Jandía with this name: In here we can find 3 of the most important beach resorts in Fuerteventura of the Iberostar hotel chain, that, over the years and due its high presence in this area, have become a reference in this beach resort that is located between Costa Calma and the emblematic Matorral beach, that is close to Morro Jable.

Playa Gaviotas is a small touristic corner, quiet and warm and it’s frequented by couples and families to enjoy the all the Atlantic beauty and the local culture of Southern Fuerteventura. A place where calm and fun are always in the air, under the sun that shines in this beautiful island, everything has its own pace, quiet, and happy.

Playa Jandia

During autumn, the whole Peninsula of Jandía offers a magical touch to the travellers. Less crowded, the water is still warm perfect to dive in, sun still shines in the sky and there are plenty of activities for you, there are still some gastronomical festivals, some local markets, special sail days, theme parks are still open, the hiking routes are at their best. Everything seems to be renewed during autumn in this oasis called Fuerteventura a place that always feel like spring.

Places you shouldn’t miss:

  • Matorral beach

  • The Maritime walkway and the Jandía lighthouse

  • Morro Jable and its fish port

  • Jandía’s Natural Park

  • Cofete beach

 

The hotel prices in Jandía are affordable if you consider its quality, its remarkable service and its excellent location (a few steps from the beach mostly). Additionally, flights are cheaper during this season, except for the Pilar festivities date, that usually gets a little bit higher, but never like august, we recommend you to book in these hotels in Playa Gaviotas beforehand since they get full good part of the year (at least the best suites).

Majorca and Ibiza compete for the summer party

The Balearic Islands are an ideal destination for any type of traveller and holiday. Every island offers a range of special motivations thanks to which millions of tourists visit this archipelago in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, renowned all around the world because of the quality of its services and its beautiful beaches and landscapes. Beaches for children, The Serra de Tramuntana for mountain lovers, the traditional culture and quietness, unique fishing grounds for recreational fishing or scuba diving, bicycle touring routes, gourmet restaurants, the best international boutiques, fashionable bars and discos…

Minorca is quietness, Majorca is relaxation and families, but if we want a summer holiday to enjoy the authentic Mediterranean party, Ibiza exceeds the expectations… Nevertheless, it has strong competitors. In the last years, the growing demand of music tourism and youth travel has turned Majorca into one of the favourite summer party destinations in Europe, along with Ibiza. Three specific areas are now points of reference, offering youth hotels specially designed for fun, sun and beach.

One of the most outstanding ones, which is preparing its first great summer, is FERGUS Magaluf Resort: complex located right next to Magaluf beach, in the Calvià coast.  It is a result of the joining of the old Fergus Barracuda and Fergus Pax. Fergus Hotels stand outs this is the first 24h All-Inclusive hotel in Magaluf, conceived for groups of friends, stag parties and summer parties. It counts on the collaboration of the main disco in this part of Majorca: BCM Planet Dance, with DJs that will work to organize music sessions during the day in pool and bar areas of the complex. Resort design has been completely refurbished, with minimalist details, common areas conceived as meeting point of all the guests and a wide range of party plans compose this new youth hotel in Magaluf.

Very close, we find one of the pioneer hotels, managed by Melià:Sol Wave House, with wave pools for surfing and sea views. Another of the outstanding ones of this chain, more targeted at families, but also offering shows and entertainment, is Sol Katmandú Park, hotel for groups of friends in Magaluf built as an amusement park on the seashore.

Mallorca Rocks is another hotel which has turned into one of the most preferred ones in the last years. It boasts concerts of some of the most important indie bands (for example  The Kooks or Kaiser Chiefs in the last summer), but in 2015 it is planning a different strategy, more similar to Ibiza: DJ sessions, parties in the pool at any time of the day, new common areas, discounts on parties of BCM Planet Dance…

Hotels in the centre of Palma have also capitalized on this new business: nightlife tourism. With the emblematic Paseo Marítimo in Palma, the lively old quarter of the city, or the modern Santa Catalina neighbourhood, hotels located in Paseo Mallorca or on the seashore are the most demanded ones. They all are close to the main discos in Palma (El Divino, Pacha, Tito’s…) and the most alternative bars (Maraca Club, Sabotage, Soho…), just one step away from the wonderful terrace of the Contemporary Art Museum Es Baluard, where avant-garde and innovative outdoor parties are celebrated in summer.

Palladium Hotel in Palma de Majorca

Palladium Hotel in Palma de Majorca

On the other hand, Ibiza is still the favourite summer party island. Its main attraction is the venue of the most important discos in the world: Space, Priviledge, Anmesia, Pacha…  Besides, this island offers complementary plans adapted to this type of public, which is not so easy to find in other destinations. An entire island providing its visitors with a party experience during the whole summer is something that we can only find in Ibiza and it is difficult that any other destination could make it better.

In fact, hotel managers are working hard in this respect by creating more and more Adults Only hotels in Ibiza specially designed for relaxing and funny holidays. One of the most exclusive hotels with a wonderful career (it has been opened only a few years ago) is the famous Ushuaïa, by Fiesta Group, which has received some of the best DJs in the world. Its central swimming pool with classic music under the water is one of its fantastic elements and gives us an idea about how this tourism sector works in this island.

 

Surfing beaches: Sotavento, in Jandia

 

Sotavento, in Jandia, is one of the prettiest beaches of Fuerteventura. With fine white sand and 1.1km length, its favourable winds make of it one of the most appreciated surf sports in the island.  In fact, we can find right in the beach a centre offering introductory courses and complete equipments, quite ideal if you go for holidays and do not want to carry the whole package.

Iberostar Fuerteventura Palace

Iberostar Fuerteventura Palace

Tides usually offer a beautiful spectacle in this Sotavento beach, since the high tides form a natural lake in the beach itself, perfect for a quiet swimming under warm waters.  It is a Special Area of Conservation (SAC), inside the Sea Demarcation of the Canary Islands, from where you can watch, like in no other place, the great Pecenescal viewpoint.

Days with good wind attract many windsurfing and kitesurfing lovers creating magical images on this incredible sand beach, filling it with colourful sails and kites that go all around doing crazy things on the waves without touching each other.

If you are a water sports lover and, especially, a surfing lover, a good option is booking a room in this Jandia area, in Fuerteventura: accommodations offer very affordable prices during the whole year and complete services for couples, friends and families.

For holidays with children, in this area of Jandia you can find some of the most specialised family hotels in Fuerteventura, so that, besides having a good time with your family, you can have time for you and escape from time to time to surf the Atlantic waves.

Amadores, the Gran Canary quiet spot

Homely and full of comforts, the Amadores area in Grand Canary is one of the most peaceful places in the entire island, ideal for romantic escapes and for staying with your friends and children.

Famed for its great sand beach and its view of the Atlantic, this spot located between the Puerto de Mogán and Puerto Rico, is one of the favourite places for the tourists from Netherlands and England that go every year to Grand Canary. Many have even a second residence in the area or live here during the whole year.

Palmera Mar Apartments

Palmera Mar Apartments

Besides its quiet atmosphere, there is a sand beach and shallow, calm waters, with the Blue Flag and surrounded by  services: from bars to restaurants, public transport and even car park, everything only a few metres from the sea. In the area around, hanging on the mountains surrounding the beach, you can find some of the best hotels and apartments in Amadores.  The view from its rooms is exceptional, especially at sunset, when the sun hides behind the Mount Teide.

Matalascañas, sea and nature in one destination

Matalascañas is one of the tourist destinations that is winning devotees year after year. This beautiful nook of the province of Huelva has become the refugee for many families who decide to spend their holidays there.

This village belongs to the  municipality of Almonte and it is located in the southeast of the province of Huelva. It is located 45 km away from the capital, which does not diminish its values as it has endless attractions that seduce its visitors.

No doubt, being a coastal destination, one of the main appeals of Huelva is the beautiful Matalascañas beach. It is a very well equipped urban destination that extends for about 4 km, with a seaside promenade with endless beach bars and restaurants. Fine and golden sand and calm waters make this a perfect place where to enjoy the sun and the weather.

Besides, Matalascañas is located close to the Doñana National Park, which gives it an added value, as the visitors can complement a holiday by the sea with activities in contact with nature.

Thus, this destination also offers us the possibility to practise different activities and sports, such as trekking, 4×4 tours, horse and boat trips or bird sighting. All this in the idyllic natural setting of the Doñana Park, where to enjoy its flora and fauna.

Image from Parques naturales de Andalucía

All these attractions make Matalascañas a special place where to spend some relaxing holidays with your family. A relaxing atmosphere in which the sea and nature come hand in hand for the visitor’s delight.

Recommended hotels in Matalascañas.

Flamero Hotel

Dunas de Doñana Golf Resort

Benidorm, an intelligent tourist destination

Benidorm begins its great year. This 2014, will be key to the capital of the Costa Blanca in regards to its tourist future because, this time, the annual International Benidorm Tourism Forum will focus on new strategies to design new smart tourist destinations.

The Benidorm Smart City special edition has been created with the aim of choosing the best ideas that allow a transformation of this city of the Spanish Levante, into a pioneer destination in Spain.

Benefits, sustainability, progress, new segments of tourists… Benidorm has been fighting for years to shake off the image of an out dated and kitsch destination that seems to have settled in the minds of much of the middle and upper classes.

Benidorm

Benidorm

Modernising currently means offering much more comfortable beachfront hotels designed for the whole family, modernization means differentiation, specialization and embracing new technologies and a more sustainable business model regarding the economics and the environment.

Combining all these premises in a destination is the key to success, but the difficulty of applying these concepts to a mature destination like Benidorm to rethink how best to implement and develop a strategy to increase, once again, the benefits for the hotels in Benidorm. Not only in summer, but throughout the year.

Sol Costablanca Benidorm

Sol Costablanca Benidorm

Classic landmarks, such as the Gran Hotel Bali, Prince Park Hotel, with rooms facing the park of L’Aigüera, the Flamingo Benidorm hotel or the recently refurbished Benidorm Suites hotel, make up some of the greatest hotel icons of this touristic city, that should be considered when regarding the future challenge, in which all parts of the game have a role in the final result.

Promoted by the Valencia Tourist Board, the Council of Benidorm and the Alicante University, the International Tourism Forum of Benidorm that will gather in the capital of the Costa Blanca some of the best speakers in the world in the field of tourism development, and will concentrate on 2 intense days of meetings, the 23rd  and 24th of October, some of the most innovative tourism ideas of the moment.

From the Papagayo coast to Montaña Roja

From Montaña Roja to the Papagayo coast we have the possibility of a journey during which you are assured leisure, relaxation and diversion in one of the most animated areas of Lanzarote during the whole year. Framed in the beautiful area of Yaiza, the heart of which rests in the great Playa Blanca and Rubicon Bay, the route takes us from west to east travelling through the extreme south of the island with spectacular views of neighbouring Fuerteventura.

If you have accommodation in Playa Blanca you have the choice of either of the outermost  departure points for your journey. However, our recommendation is to reserve the hotel on the beach Las Coloradas with the objective of taking the trip following the natural movement of the sun, east to west, taking maximum advantage of the light.

From the Papagayo coast a part of the landscape is coloured ochre, golden sands, long touristic beaches, intercepted with small bays: playa Mujeres, the Caleta del Congrio, Papagayo… Outstanding scenery which gives credit to the valuation of Lanzarote as  reserve of the Biosphere and island of contrasts together with the imposing natural area of Los Ajaches.

Sandos Papagayo Beach Resort

Sandos Papagayo Beach Resort

The Playa de Papagayo has fine sand and is fairly flat being one of the most frequented in summer but one of the most tranquil in winter, even though the climate in this area of Lanzarote maintains a constant agreeable temperature so much so that people comment on the eternal spring time that prevails. Sun, a few clouds, an occasional shower and the average temperature is 19/20C.  The waters of the Atlantic, always calm on this coast, are a luxury for swimmers because the average temperature never falls bellow 15C.

As you travel along the coast towards the tourist nucleus of Playa Blanca where some of the best hotels in Lanzarote can be found, you will pass some of the great resorts that crown the Playa de las Coloradas. At this part of the coast you will see a large concentration of boats and yachts near to the bays and beaches which lead to the exclusive Marina Rubicon, one of the most important of Lanzarote.

In the Marina Rubicon, lovers of sailing have a wonderful opportunity because apart from  being able to rent a sailing boat or organise a mooring for their own boat, they can also have sailing lessons during the whole year.  There are courses for all age groups, therefore, when organising holidays with children in Lanzarote it is a good idea to arrange for the children to learn to sail and enjoy themselves while their parents can relax and discover the island.  The best option is if you have your hotel in Playa Blanca or near to the Marina, you can walk to the sailing school and at the same time rest at the hotel while the children have their lessons.

Villas Coral Deluxe Apartaments

Villas Coral Deluxe Apartaments

Following the route along this southern coast of Lanzarote, taking the Avenida Maritima which hugs the coastline from the Marina Rubicon, you will arrive at Playa Blanca, an idilic place for holidays with children or with your partner. Offering spectacular beaches at just a short walk from the town (you do not need a car because everything is within reach) and even though it is a first class touristic centre in Lanzarote, it is much quieter than other areas such as Puerto del Carmen.

The centre of the town is small but has all services and commodities plus diversion for all the family or with your partner by the sea. From the quay of Playa Blanca you have the possibility of taking a ferry which connects daily the island of Lanzarote with Fuerteventura, allowing those who are staying in one of the hotels in Playa Blanca to visit one of the most beautiful natural areas of the neighbouring island: the small island of Lobos and the wonderful park of The Dunes de Corralejo.

Continuing your journey by the coast, we leave behind the hotels Iberostar Lanzarote Park  and Marconfort Atlantic Gardens, abandoning the Avenida Maritima and connecting with the Avenida Del Faro Pechiguera after passing the diving school, Dawn Dives.  After arriving at Calle Austria, with the imposing volcano behind you, turn into the peninsula which opens to the sea to the area of the luxury villas of Montaña Roja: here you will ascertain that the views you can enjoy in this tranquil area watching the sunset, are a wonderful finale for this unforgettable route.

 

CADIZ: beach destination for 2014

Very few beach destinations exist in Spain like Cadiz: the coast of this Andalusian province is unique when one is looking for a beach paradise, with very little construction and the natural environment practically intact.

Although it is true that the sea is less friendly than that in the Levante area and the wind is stronger along the Atlantic coastline, however, the advantages that the beaches of Cadiz have over the Mediterranean are multiple especially if you are thinking about a romantic getaway surfing or simply a trip with a group of friends.

Hotel in Calas de Conil

Hotel in Calas de Conil

The Cadiz coast has a special charm, more animation, with a young and natural ambience, if you compare it with some of the well-known Mediterranean resorts such as Benidorm, Torremolinos, Fuengirola or Marbella. Cadiz is synonymous with enjoyment because the locals have it in their blood and wherever you go it is impossible to escape this humour which touches everything with a smile.

However, it is also possible to find peace in this area of Cadiz because it is one of the few places along the Spanish coastline where you can switch off, leave behind the frantic city pace and just enjoy the beaches of Cadiz.

This is especially true in areas like Conil de la Frontera, where the coast appears to be a never-ending beach of fine sand submerged by the waves of the Atlantic and bathed in brilliant sunshine almost every day of the year. (It is because of this light and the exceptional highlights that Cadiz is known as the tacita de plata, the silver cup).

Rooms in Cala de Conil

Rooms in Cala de Conil

Barbate, Zahara de los Atunes, los Canos de Meca…….are all first class beach destinations but if you want to relax, your best option is to reserve a hotel in Calas de Conil: rest in a bedroom next to Roche Bays which will be inaugurated for 2014, is an infallible remedy against stress.

Due to the fact that there is limited accommodation in this area it is advisable to book early, in particular if the hotel is in Roche or Nova Santi Petri, to confirm your accommodation and avoid last minute surprises.

The hotels in Calas de Conil are of a medium/high category with a variety of services such as: Free Internet, restaurants, bars, winter and summer swimming pools, spa and wellness areas, water sports and, of course, golf.

In the area there are various high level courses with circuits for experienced players and beginners.