La Manga Beaches
The splendid La Manga beaches are unique in the sense that they offer the choice of enjoying fun in the sun on the Mediterranean sea or the Mar Menor inland sea. Aptly translated as The Sleeve in Spanish, La Manga is a long narrow spit of land that, aside from a few narrow fishing channels separates the Mediterranean from the Mar Menor which allows the elderly or visitors with young children to swim in the more calm and shallow waters of the Mar Menor, and the more active visitor to enjoy the deeper waters of the Mediterranean.
La Manga Beaches
Aside from the numerous hotels, activity centres and entertainment venues, La Manga can really be regarded as one big beach where, depending on what you fancy doing during your stay, you have a variety of areas to choose from. The more remote tip of the ‘Strip' is home to the picturesque Puente de la Risa which is a stone bridge that has become a tourist attraction, not only because of its wonderful stonework, but also due to its steep elevation which is a scary challenge for even the most powerful vehicles. The beaches around this area are perfect to get away for a peaceful picnic, or luxurious dining in the Collados Beach Restaurant.
Heading back from the tip of the ‘Strip' the area widens around the Port of Tomás Maestre which has an excellent choice of cafes, bars and restaurants as well as shops, a supermarket and number of hotels and holiday apartments. The Mar Menor side of this area is taken up with the port and majority of the bars, while the Mediterranean side boasts a choice of beaches and coves, great for spending the day if you prefer to be close to entertainment venues.
Continuing further, the ‘Strip' is fairly narrow for a few kilometres with beaches on either side lined with hotels and holiday apartments and a further selection of bars and restaurants. After this narrow area you reach the La Manga beaches that surround the main resort area. Being the main tourist area of La Manga, this is the hub of activity where you will find a number of services such as banks, pharmacies, medical centres, commercial buildings, shops, boutiques and supermarkets. The beaches around here offer the best facilities but do get very crowded, especially during the peak summer months when all the water sports centres are open.
Cabo de Palos
From the main La Manga beaches to the beginning of the ‘Strip' around the port area of Cabo de Palos is the main tourist residential area and a further choice of beaches and entertainment venues on either side. As the ‘Strip' widens the vast coastal area of the Mar Menor stretches north and to the south the wonderful and plentiful coves and bays of Cabo de Palos wait to be explored. This area is a gem for snorkelling and scuba diving, with tiny islets within an easy swim surrounded by reefs, and further south the lovely bay of Cala Reona and coastal stretch of the picturesque Calblanque National Park where hiking and horse riding are popular.