The region of Murcia is in the South East of Spain on the Mediterranean Sea with the province of Andalucía to the south and the province of Alicante to the north. Murcia is the capital of the region and Cartagena is the second city of the area.
Murcia is well served by airports but is due to benefit even further when the Corvera airport opens at the end of 2011.
The region is a major producer of fruits, vegetables, and flowers for Spain and the rest of Europe. Wineries have developed near the towns of Bullas, Yecla and Jumila and Moratalla is well known for its olive oil. The gastronomy of Murcia is obviously based on excellent fruit and vegetable from the region; with tomatoes and peppers featuring highly in the cuisine and the local wines are excellent.
The Region of Murcia is one of the Spanish communities that has grown the most in the last years, being well promoted for cultural events, festivals, conventions and conferences and of course tourism. It is certainly not hard to see why holiday makers are so attracted to this autonomous region.
Murcia boasts around 300 days of sunshine a year with an average annual temperature of 21º C. This makes it ideal for holidays all year round and it is especially pleasant to be able to take advantage of the clement weather outside the hottest summer months to relax, enjoy the warmth, and perhaps play golf on the abundant golf courses for which Murcia is rightly famous.
Things to see in Murcia
Murcia, the regional capital is a fascinating and beautiful city, steeped in the history of the many cultures that have brought influences throughout the centuries. Murcia has many magnificent and ancient buildings to visit and admire, the finest example of which must be the Cathedral, created over 600 years ago on the site of a former mosque – a fine mixture of the Gothic and the Baroque.
Cartagena is the capital of the Spanish Navy’s Maritime Department of the Mediterranean and as far back as the 16th century it has been one of the most important naval ports in Spain. It is still an important naval seaport, the main military haven of Spain, and there is a big naval shipyard. Also, recently, it has been developing its commercial shipyard and is fast becoming an important Super Yacht support centre which is a good new source of employment for the city.
The Great Guns of Cartagena are well known and very impressive to see. During the early part of the 20th century a system of coastal defences was constructed to protect the vital harbour of Cartagena. This included forts, guns, fire control systems, searchlights and many other elements. The system included four of the largest artillery pieces ever made – huge 38.1 Vickers guns with a range of some 20 miles. These guns remain in place, two at the Castillitos battery, at Cabo Tiñoso, near Puerto de Mazarrón, two at the Cenizas battery, near La Manga Club.
The Mar Menor
Murcia is blessed with some spectacular natural areas. The most dramatic must be the Mar Menor (Little Sea). This is a wonderful quirk of nature – once just a bay, an underwater volcanic reef gradually gathered sediments and over a long, long time developed a sandbar 21 km long and variously 100 to 1200 m wide which is known as La Manga (The Sleeve) which encloses 170 square kilometres to make the biggest saltwater lake in Europe. The Phoenicians and then the Moorish Kings valued this area and built their summer homes on the banks of the Little Sea.
It was not until the 1960s that La Manga was developed for tourism. It is now a highly popular and successful resort.
The waters are highly saline because the maximum depth in the Mar Menor is 7 meters, so swimming is easy and relaxing and the water keeps warm all year round. Additionally, the waters are rich in iodine and the mud is highly regarded as therapeutic for such conditions as rheumatism and arthritis.
Obviously due to La Manga being located between two seas, it is an ideal place for water sports. There are sailing and skiing schools and the entire coast also offers a series of areas that are ideally suited and perfectly situated for scuba diving, with many quality dive centres and superb dive sites, recognised as some of the best diving in Spain.
At both ends of the Mar Menor can be found nature reserves. In the north you will find the Salinas de San Pedro del Pinatar Regional Park, a space where a great many species of migratory birds come to nest.
At the southern end of the Mar Menor is found Calblanque National Park– a protected natural area representing one of the last untouched areas along the Mediterranean coastline. Here you will find sand beaches, sandbanks, cliff tops and salt flats.
Add to this the magnificent 30 odd kms of pristine coastline centred on Mazarrón featuring 26 wonderful beaches and you can see how much there is to explore and enjoy around the coast of the Murcia region, and of course, there’s golf!
Golf in Murcia
Murcia has one of the highest concentrations of golf courses in the whole of Spain. The wonderful year round weather and the quality of the courses encourages golfers to come back year after year.
Here are just a few suggestions from the dozens available:
The Corvera Golf and Country Club is situated in a national park at the edge of the Sierra de Carrascoy Mountains. The championship 72 par 18-hole course was designed by Jose Maria Olazabal. The course is due to become the home of the PGA’s of Europe winter training base. The new Corvera airport will only be a 10 minute drive away
Four excellent Jack Nicklaus courses are also to be found in the Murcia region.
Also recommended is the Torre Pache Golf Club and the Roda Beach Resort Golf Club, both of which gained 5 star ratings on the World of Golf website.
Accommodation in Murcia
Murcia is a popular holiday destination and there are lots of options for holiday rentals. We have a wide range of villas, apartments and townhouses available for short and long-term rentals in Murcia. Use our easy to use search facility to find the property which suits you and your family.