Guardamar Del Segura
Alicante - 35km – 0h 34 min
Murcia (San Javier) – 43km - 0 h 42 min
Guardamar is located about 15 km North of Torrevieja and just 25 km south of Alicante International Airport. It is a popular seaside resort with both Spanish and International visitors who are attracted by the towns's relaxed atmosphere and beautiful natural surroundings. Around 80% of the land in this coastal resort is protected natural area. The La Mata Lagoon Natural Park is famed for its large salt water lake with its own population of migrating flamingos and the Guardamar Pine Forest which is one of the most spectacular coastal woodlands in Spain. There are 800 hectares of Mediterranean pine forest planted in the dunes which border 11 km of wild, golden sandy beaches.
The surrounding hillsides offer stunning views of the Segura River and the Mediterranean and there is a also a beautiful marina and a small fishing port located at the mouth of the river. The area is also famed for its 2 salt water lagoons, La Mata and Torrevieja lagoons are both beautiful natural wildlife sanctuaries for migratory birds which includes a large population pink flamingos.
Guardamar is a, clean, modern town with great services, amenities and facilities and is extremely proud of its historiy, culture, traditions and festivals. The town's agricultural and fishing heritage are evident in the high quality of the local cuisine with many of the restaurants favouring locally grown and sourced products. The most outstanding event is the “Guardamar King Prawn (llagostí) and Sweet Dried Red Pepper (nyora) Cuisine Week" held the first week of June. This event started in 2005 and has become one of the most prestigious cuisine highlights on the Mediterranean coast.
Through the generations Guardamar has been home to many different civilisations including the Phoenicians, Romans and Moors. The remains of the Phoenician port and the Islamic Caliphate Rabita or Monastery are both still located in “la Fonteta" near the river. The best views of the town, beaches, pine woods, sea and the surrounding farmland areas from the top of the remains of the medieval walled town: “el Castell". Furthermore, there is a very interesting catalogue of trips less than an hour's drive away. In Guardamar you can enjoy the warmest sea waters, water sports, hiking trails, horse riding, biking, golf, or visit historic and prehistoric sites.
Guardamar beaches are among some of the most beautiful and unique on the Spanish Mediterranean Coast. The town boasts over 11 km of fine golden, sandy beaches bordered by beautiful coastal pinewoods. Of these beaches 2 km are located to the north of the River Segura and 9 km to the south. The Guardamar Sand Dunes Forest covers total area of almost 2,000 acres. Vegetation consists mainly of eucalyptus and palm trees and other Mediterranean plants but there have been some more exotic species introduced to the area over the years.
North of the River Segura is Els Tossals Beach which is a 1661m long naturist beach. South of the River there are 7 different beaches stretching around 10 km South. Some are wild, natural beaches and others are urban beaches around town centre's shoreline where you can find bar, retsaurants, shops and general services close at hand. itself. From north to south they are named: Els Vivers, La Babilònia, Centre, La Roqueta, El Montcaio, El Camp and Les Ortigues. The urban town beaches are known as: Centre and La Roqueta. Along the right bank of the mouth of the River Segura there is the Fish Exchange (Llotja de Peix) with fish auctions Monday to Friday mornings and the Nautical Sports' Marina, located 2 km from Guardamar's town centre. All Guardamar's beaches have 4 Blue European quality flags and is one of the most beautiful beach environments on the Spanish coastline.
Parks & Nature
Parque Alfonso 13th
This is urban park is set amongst 800 hectares of pine forest and offers walking and cylcing trails that lead from the centre of the town down to the sand dunes and wild beaches just north of the centre.
Reina Sofia Park
The Reina Sofia Park is part of the huge pine forest, a very short walk from the Town Hall Square. It has ponds with fish and birdlife, spacious children playground areas under the shade of the pines. The squirrels have become a symbol of the park and of Guardamar. It is a favourite meeting point for families with children. There are several popular “petanque" bowling pitches widely used by our senior residents. On summer evenings, the Auditorium of the Park hosts shows and music entertainment in what is known as “les Nits d'Estiu." (The Summer Nights)
La Mata Salt Lakes Natural Park
The “La Mata and Torrevieja Salt Lakes" were historically known as the Guardamar Salt Lakes since they were a part of our district. They are a natural park of great ecological value for its flora and fauna. It is a resting place of great importance for migratory birds on route to Africa or back. Amongst other species, we must mention the necked grebe and the flamingo, as well as other nesting birds such as the marsh harrier and the avocet. The park covers a surface of 3,700 hectares, with much of the north shore still belonging to Guardamar's district. There is an Information and Interpretation Centre on the coastal N-332 Road, at the height of La Mata, which can be reached by bike from Guardamar. Within the park, there is a route that can also be done on foot or by bike.
The final stretch of the River Segura and its estuary (or Gola) is a unique natural environment. The existing vegetation provides resting places for nesting waterfowl such as herons, egrets, stilts, herons, gulls, grebes, moorhens and others. A noteworthy area is known as “les Voltes del Riu Vell" (The Old River's Meanders). It is now a protected stretch of the old river bed since a new Segura river channel flows straight to the sea since the late 1980s Flood Plan.
This ancient protected stretch has been replanted with native river bank vegetation and shrubs. There is a bird observation tower near the river's mouth. Walking and cycling excursions known as “Green Routes" have been arranged on both river banks. They connect Guardamar with towns upstream all the way to Orihuela (29 km) and Murcia (69 km.). You can also choose to discover the farmland country paths.
The Marina de Las Dunas Fishing and Nautical Sports Club
The Marina de Las Dunas Fishing and Nautical Sports Club opened its doors in 1999. It is located on the right bank of the River Segura, next to its mouth. It has 498 berths, of which 116 are intended for public use. It is a highly appreciated marina for its peace and quiet and its many facilities. After a long journey, you will be able to relax watching the dunes, the pinewood and the sea whilst enjoying a nice dinner in the restaurant with splendid views. The Leisure Centre offers a wide range of water sports: sailing, windsurfing, water skiing, diving, canoeing and boating, as well as schools and courses in sailing and diving, fishing competitions and regattas organised by the Yacht Club. Among its facilities there is the fish market, or Llotja de Peix, where fish auctions are held every morning from Monday to Friday. It is open to all those wishing to buy fresh fish and Guardamar King Prawns directly from the local fishermen's daily catches.
Guardamar has an Annual Traditional Festival Calendar. In February Carnival is celebrated in costumes and masks that disguise people for a few hours, with a parade-costume contest on carrer Major, the town's Main Street. After that, a grand ball is held and the best costumes are rewarded. There is also a Children's Carnival with parades and theatrical performances. The traditional "mona de xocolata" (a chocolate pastry) is offered to all children at the end.
The processions of Guardamar are of great quality. The sculptures reflect influences from both Valencia to the north and Murcia to the south. What distinguishes Guardamar's Easter performances are the staged episodes of the Passion of Christ: starting with the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, The Arrest on Holy Monday, Pontius Pilate washing his hands on Holy Thursday or the “Encounter" on Easter Sunday morning.
As is the tradition in the region of Valencia, Easter is also celebrated in Guardamar the Monday just after Easter Sunday and –further on– the day of Saint Vincent Ferrer or the second Monday after Easter. These Mondays are known as “Dia de la Mona", a local pastry. These two Mondays, picnic lunches and snacks are held in the pinewood. One of the favourite places is known as the Canal del Tio Batiste (Uncle Batiste's Canal) where picnics include traditional songs and playgrounds are set in a joyful day for all generations.
San Juan Bonfires
With the summer equinox a Foguera or Bonfire is planted on the 21st June. It is a monument made of papier maché, cardboard and wood where the year's local and global outstanding events are criticised. On the eve of Saint John a magical ritual night of fire and water is held on the beach known as “la Nit Màgica". The next day, after midnight, a party and popular open air dance is organised and the bonfire is burnt by Saint James' church.
Moors & Christians
The town's most important “fiestas" are the “Moros i Cristians" or “Moors and Christians in Honour of Saint James", which are held in the second half of July. They begins with the “Enchanted Lady's Legend" and that year's young “Dama de Guardamar" (Lady of Guardamar) is proclaimed and crowned. The staging of the legend is an ancient story of a young maiden who, after an evil spell, can only be released by the arms of a brave warrior who must bathe the feet of the young lady in the waters of the River Segura. His battles against the evil forces are staged.
The “embassies" and “parades" during the “Moors and Christians" week are undoubtedly the most spectacular moments of these festivals. They are based in the memory of the Christian Conquest on Guardamar by the Catalans during the Middle Ages. At night dancing is held in the Popular Barracks and in the “Cuartelillos" or Moor and Christians clubs. There are also fire festivals and the water castle fireworks. Powder and music are also an important part of this event, which is quite common all over the Valencian Region.
Our Lady of the Rosary Fatima
She is the patroness of the Guardamar Countryside Dyrlands (Camp de Guardamar) on the southern slope of the Montcaio hill. A pilgrimage of Our Lady of Fatima leaves the town's centre to her hermitage in the fields, every 13th of May. Subsequently, festivities are also held every weekend of September: a month linked to harvest. Activities include the paella rice contest, the colourful parade, racing games. Obviously, people look forward to Our Lady of Fatima's day. There is a procession and flower offering open air Holy Mass amongst other events.
Our Lady of the Rosary
Guardamar has a patron saint, Saint James on the 25th of July and a patroness, Our Lady of the Rosary on the 7th of October. The sculpture or Our Lady is an object of great devotion and dates from the early 17th century. It is a work of art of transition from Renaissance to Baroque, which is consistent with the founding of the Guardamar Brotherhood of the Rosary in 1610. It is mostly a religious event with a “novena" preceding Our Lady's day. On the eve there is a floral offering and traditional dances are held in regional costumes. The “auroros" are street choirs who sing religious chants on the 7th October and every October Sunday before breaking of dawn. This tradition is common to the Vega Baja district and neighbouring southern districts. In the late evening the procession ends with a magnificent firework display launched from the old Castle on top of the hill.
During the month of December, Guardamar has a large program of events for all generations. There is a council Christmas tree, a crèche, Santa Claus's Little House where children give their letters. During these days activities and sporting events are aimed mainly at children: workshops, theatre, games and magic.
This is a large but beautiful, clean and laid back town. It has all the modern services and facilities and is blessed with beautiful natural areas and some of the best urban and wild beaches in Spain. It is close to the 2 International airports at Alicante and Murcia and in easy driving of all the areas major Cities (Elche, Alicante, Murcia, Cartagena and Torrevieja). It is a great area to live or to visit on regular holidays and properties in the town and surrounding villages are very good value fro money. There are many new and stylish homes on offer from quality developers at great prices as you can see from the list below.