Although not the largest city on Spain’s Costa Blanca, come the summer months, Benidorm is certainly the liveliest. Its transformation since it began to gain popularity in the 1960’s is amazing, and it is now reputed to having the highest amount of high rise buildings of any city in the world, based on its population. Benidorm is geared to pleasing and accommodating the many thousands of holidaymakers that flock to its beaches and lively bars and clubs each year. There are parts of the city that, if it wasn’t for the heat and palm trees, you could believe you were somewhere in Britain. Surprisingly, for many this is its main attraction, and hoards of British holidaymakers come here for a bit of home away from home, with the odd paella and glass of sangria thrown in for good measure.
Love it or hate it, Benidorm offers visitors the chance to enjoy a sunny beach vacation with a fantastic choice of activities and attractions, as well as some beautiful places to visit on a day out. Within the city there are hundreds of shops, boutiques, cafés, bars, takeaways and restaurants where you can pick and choose the environment you wish to relax in. For a more tranquil setting, Benidorm’s Old Town proudly retains its charm among the surrounding high rise buildings, with its winding maze of cobbled lanes dominated by the beautiful blue tiled domes of Iglesia de San Jaime church. There are parks and plazas dotted with small boutiques and traditional tapas bars, as well as the more lively ”Tapas Alley” and busy Passeig de la Carretera that is pedestrianised and commonly known as Walking Street. At the headland of the old town where the church is, visitors can enjoy views over the city’s beaches and out to sea.
These beaches are called Levante and Poniente and both are long and wide with golden sand and calm waters. Levante is closest to the livelier parts of the city and is the most popular, although slightly smaller than Poniente. Both beaches offer excellent facilities including disability access points. Nightlife is what many visitors are here for, and there is a lot of it. One of Benidorm’s most famous landmarks is the magnificent Benidorm Palace, where they hold nightly shows, concerts, bands and cabarets, all accompanied by delicious cuisine. The city is also popular for its exciting theme parks which include Aqualandia, Mundomar, Terra Mitica, Aqua Natura, Iberia Park and Magnus Colossus. A short drive from the city you will find Spain’s most visited village, that sits atop a mountain in the beautiful Guadalest Valley. The valley is also home to the Algar Waterfalls where visitors can enjoy a swim in the icy waters.