Are you looking at a range of holidays to Tenerife and other islands in Spain for your getaway? If you have yet to decide where to go for your Spanish getaway, you might like to consider going to the province of Almeria.
This sun-soaked area on Spain’s southeast coastline has been influenced by a succession of civilizations including the Phoenicians, Romans, Carthaginians and the Moors. Evidence of these past influences can be found in the architecture, music and food specialties of modern Almeria.
Here are some of the reasons why Almeria should be on your short list of places to visit.
Weather and beaches in Almeria
With an average of 320 sunny days a year, Almeria is the perfect spot for acquiring a Mediterranean suntan. The region is also well endowed with beaches on which to acquire that tan or to enjoy the range of water sports that are on offer.
Most of the beaches are sandy and a large number of them have been awarded the coveted EU Blue Flag. As well as the more popular beaches near to the major resorts there is a myriad of small sheltered coves, which can be relatively quiet even in the summer months.
The capital city of the region, Almeria, was once the most important sea port of Andalucia and it retains many fine examples of Moorish architecture built during this period. Probably the most impressive is the second largest Moorish castle in Spain, the Alcabaza. Perched on a hilltop high above the city, this well-preserved structure dominates the skyline for miles around.
The city’s cathedral is also worth a visit. Its main buildings date from the 16th century and it is unique in Spain for being fortified. When you consider the turbulent times in which it was constructed fortification would seem to be an obvious “extra”.
Another cultural inheritance is that of flamenco, Spain’s exuberant music and dance form. Each August Almeria is host to a large Flamenco Festival which brings together many of the top dancers, singers and guitarists. Don’t worry if you visit at another time; the streets ring with the distinctive sound of flamenco music all year round as buskers show off their talents to appreciative audiences.
Gastronomic specialties in Almeria
The menus of Almerian restaurants offer an abundance of local specialties most of which have fish as the basic ingredient. One to try is fried fish “a la Andalusia”. This is locally caught fish fried in a chickpea flour and olive oil. Chefs here also make good use of the more exotic species which the local fishermen bring home such as cuttlefish, squid and anchovies.
There is more to Almeria than just sunshine and beaches although the area does have more than its fair share of those. Spain is well served by flights from most UK airports and there is a wide choice of accommodation types.
Almeria is possibly the least visited region of Andalusia so it’s suitably off the beaten track for travellers and backpackers looking to go somewhere a little bit different.