Alicante Travel Guide

Introduction to Alicante

Alicante’s convenient location between the beach resorts of Benidorm and Torrevieja has earned it the title of ‘The Gateway to the Costa Blanca’ but in recent years the city has been transformed, and it is now a popular city break destination.


Alicante, considered the cultural capital of Costa Blanca is home to a wealth of arts, places of historical significance and sandy beaches, as well as being in easy reach of the countryside.

 

staligtites, caves

Canelobre Caves 

24km from Alicante, the Canelobre Caves is an enchanting system of caves. They are the largest in Spain, formed millions of years ago.

Playa de Postiguet, Alicante

Beaches

The Province of Alicante has over 200km of coastline offering endless beaches, such as the iconic Blue Flag Playa de Postiguet a 667m beach at the foot of Santa Barbara Castle.

Santa Barbara Castle, Alicante

Santa Barbara Castle

Dominating the Alicante skyline, the Santa Barbara Castle is a 10th century fortress on Mount Benacantil offering panoramic views of the city.

Other things to do in Alicante

Alicante is best explored on foot where you can wander down the quaint narrow streets and palm tree-lined promenade Explanada de Espana, taking in the contrast between the modern marina and The Old Town.

 

The Old Town of Alicante is a hub for museums and art galleries. After admiring the views of Alicante at Santa Barbara Castle you can head inside to the Museum of the City of Alicante (MUSA); its  exhibitions focus on the history of the castle and Alicante.

 

The MARQ Provincial Archaeological Museum has earned recognition for its unique and valuable collection dating from the Palaeolithic period. The Bonfires of Saint John Museum on Teniente Alvarez Soto explores the history of Alicante’s most important festival and the El Museo del Agua is a water museum  featuring fun exhibits and an aquarium located in a distinct building in the traditional Old Town.

 

Alicante has two spots for those wanting to enjoy the arts: The Alicante Museum of Contemporary Art (MACA) and The Gravina Museum of Fine Arts (MUBAG). The MACA houses fine arts collections of 20th century contemporary art and the MUBAG has collections of paintings and sculptures of Alicante from local artists.

 

Once you’ve soaked up the arts and culture on offer in the city centre you can head to the beaches or the surrounding countryside 

 

Alicante is an ideal base for day trips into the countryside. Guadalest is a small village on the top of a mountain located 63km from Alicante. Millions visit Guadalest Valley each year to enjoy the views of the lake from the village, Guadalest Castle, the beautiful scenery, a number of museums, and shops selling crafts and traditional Valencian produce.

 

A short drive from Guadalest is Fonts del Algar, a collection of waterfalls, rock pools, restaurants and the Cactus Garden Dinosaur Park.

 

20km off the coast of Alicante is Tarbaca Island. The island is a protected reserve which is home to a variety of marine life, restaurants and the Museum of Tarbaca. Boats depart from Alicante daily.

 

The city hosts a number of elaborate and exciting festivals each year. Two of the most important are Alicante Carnival in Feburary and the Bonfire of Saint John in June. Parades, parties on the Playa de Postiguet beach and fireworks are just some of the things you can expect to see.

 

For more inspiration check out our guide to the top 10 things to do in Alicante.

Eating and drinking in Alicante

Traditionally dining in Alicante consists of a large lunch during the early afternoon then lighter bites such as tapas for dinner. As a result, many restaurants in the city will be closed between 4-8pm.

 

Being a Spanish port city means freshly caught fish is plentiful. Alicante is known for its seafood and rice dishes, there are over 300 types of rice dish in the city alongside seafood platters featuring lobster, mussels, swordfish, tuna and oysters. There are a number of restaurants on the Marina such as Restaurante la Brujula offering seafood platters with views onto the port.

 

You can’t visit Alicante without trying one, or many, of the paella variants. The paellas from Taverna Dell Artista on Plaza de San Cristobal, and Rincón de Antonio on Calle de San Rafael, both in the Old Town are considered some of the best. Other non-seafood paellas worth mentioning are the rabbit and snail at Casa Elías and lamb and rosemary at Cerveceria Estiu.

Alicante climate

Alicante has a hot semi-arid climate with little fluctuation between the seasons, so summers are hot and dry and the winters are mild with most rainfall in torrential bursts in autumn.

When to go to Alicante

Alicante’s year-round warm weather and over 300 days of sunshine make it an ideal city break destination throughout the year. If you’re looking for a beach break then June to September are the hottest, driest months with average temperatures of 25oC and highs of 30oC, these however are the busiest months.

Flying to Alicante

Alicante Airport is located 9km south-west of Alicante. There are a number of daily flights to Alicante from most major airports in the UK. After flying into Alicante Airport you can make your transfer to Alicante by bus, taxi or car hire.

 Alicante Deals

Hotels in Alicante

Car hire in Alicante

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