Steve's World Blog Information and articles on cities, towns and villages around the world.

October 30, 2009

Almoradi Spain

Filed under: Costa Blanca,History,Spain — Tags: , , , , — needahand @ 5:15 pm

Situated just inland from the Costa Blanca coastline, the historic town of Almoradi lies close to the River Segura and has a resident population of around 18,000. The history of the town is the stuff of legend, as the town was supposedly founded by King Brigo in 1196 BC, firmer evidence exists of settlement by later civilizations such as Greeks, Romans and Visigoths, and the name comes from the Moorish occupation of the town in the 8th-13th centuries and actually means “my will and desire”. Almoradi fell into decline after the Christian reconquest and suffered badly in the 1829 earthquake which devastated the region. Almoradi is the HQ of an ancient water tribunal founded to resolve disputes over water, which is scarce in the region, fines are still dispensed in ancient Spanish coins. Almoradi is located near to Ciudad Quesada and Rojales on the southern Costa Blanca.

October 29, 2009

El Campello Alicante

Filed under: Costa Blanca,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 11:38 am

A small town and coastal resort located to the north of Alicante, El Campello is a popular holiday destination for both Spanish and International visitors. Boasting stunning views along the surrounding coastline, El Campello is in a fine spot, and itself has some wonderful beaches. Dotted with ancient watchtowers dating back to the days when Barbary pirates raided this coastline, El Campello has survived mostly as a fishing village over the centuries and has only found itself as a tourist resort in recent years. Typically for towns of the region, El Campello enjoys numerous fiestas and festivals, perhaps the main one, and the one which local look forward to all year, is the Moros y Cristianos (Moors and Christians) festival, which takes place in October. The town benefits for a fine climate with El Campello weather, generally sunny and dry for most of the year, though it can get a bit chilly during February. El Campello is situated between Alicante and Villajoyosa, about 13 kilometres from Alicante city centre. El Campello Map.

If you are holidaying in El Campello you may need to get transfers from Alicante airport, you can find details of how to book here: Alicante Airport Transfers. If you are driving you can view a map of Alicante here: Alicante Map.

October 27, 2009

Albatera Costa Blanca

Filed under: Costa Blanca,Spain — Tags: , , — needahand @ 6:10 pm

Located in the Vega Baja district of the Costa Blanca, the small town of Albatera has a population of about 9,000 and lies to the north east of Orihuela. Standing beside the River Segura, Albatera has a history going back to Roman times though its documented history dates from the Moorish occupation, which ended in the 13th century, after defeat by Alfonso the Wise in 1266. Over the centuries Albatera has mostly survived through agriculture and pig farming, though in recent years property development has reared its ugly head, as the demand for homes in the sun grew during the 1990’s and early 21st century. Economic slowdown caused something of a halt in redevelopment, though this is certain to resume in the near future. The town today gathers around its pretty plaza, where the town hall and parochial church are situated, this is the centre of Albatera town life, and is where the local people gather to chat and celebrate fiestas.

October 25, 2009

Busot Spain

Filed under: Costa Blanca,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , , , — needahand @ 7:45 am

A small village situated near to El Campello and Alicante on the Costa Blanca, Spain, Busot has a population of just over 3,000 and is a traditional Spanish village with an old world charm. Its biggest event of the year is its Moros y Cristianos festival which takes place on the weekend after Easter, the entire village is included in the celebrations. Most visitors to Busot will pass only on their way to the well known local attraction – the Cuevas del Canelobre, a system of caves which occur half way up a mountain rather than underground, as you would expect. The Cuevas del Canelobre, feature a huge main cavern with stalagmites and stalagtites which have been formed over millions of years and take on various shapes including one like a candelabra (canelobre). Busot is well signposted from El Campello, finding the caves from Busot is a little more tricky.

October 24, 2009

Puerto Pollensa Majorca

Filed under: Balearic Islands,Holidays,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 1:33 pm

The harbour area for the ancient Majorcan town of Pollensa, is known as Puerto Pollensa. For many years a popular destination for rich tourists to Mallorca, Puerto Pollensa was the subject of a 1936 short story by the famous author Agatha Christie (Problem at Pollensa Bay). The present town still retains much of the charm that it would have had in Agatha Christie’s day and has not been ruined by concrete tower blocks, as has much of the Majorca coastline. The colourful Majorcan fishing boasts are however being largely superceded by luxury yachts, though the hope is that they will not replace them entirely. The attractive Pine Walk which runs beside the harbour of Puerto Pollensa, is a wonderful setting for an evening stroll, before settling down for a delicious meal in one of the local restaurants. The region enjoys a splendid climate and Puerto Pollensa weather is ideal for sunny summer holidays or pleasant winter breaks, so why not visit the picturesque Mallorcan town of Puerto Pollensa soon.

October 23, 2009

Club de Golf Oliva Nova

Filed under: Costa Blanca,Spain — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 3:52 pm

Located between the northern Costa Blanca towns of Denia and Oliva, the fine Oliva Nova golf course is an 18 hole, par 72 course, which is gently undulating with numerous water hazards. The course was designed by the famous Spanish golfer Severiano Ballesteros, and was built to be challenging for golfers of all standards, it has a playing distance of 6,350m. A championship course, the Oliva Nova Golf has held various important tournaments including many for Spanish professionals.

October 20, 2009

Calasparra Murcia Spain

Filed under: Costa Calida,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , , , , — needahand @ 2:56 pm

Situated at the confluence of four rivers, the town of Calasparra is located in a rugged and mountainous part of the Murcia region of south-eastern Spain, the Sierra de Molina and Sierra de Puerto surround the town. Inhabited since prehistoric times, Calasparra has seen settlements by Iberians, Romans, Moors and Christians. Its proximity to so much water via the nearby rivers, led to its being important for the growing of rice, no a product that most would associate with the mountainous regions of Spain. Nearby places of interest include the holy town of Caravaca de la Cruz, Mula, Hellin, Moratalla and Cieza. Calasparra Map.

October 19, 2009

Murcia’s Roda Golf Resort

Filed under: Costa Calida,Spain — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 7:42 pm

One of the finest golf complexes in the Murcia region of Spain, the Roda Golf Resort Murcia is a superb development of villas, townhouses and apartments in a wonderful location, close to the popular Mar Menor (Lesser Sea). The Par 72 golf course was designed by Dave Thomas, one of Europe’s leading course designers, and though set on flat land, has still been made challenging and exciting to play. When complete the Roda Golf Resort will have some of the best facilities in Murcia including the 5 Star De Vere Hotel. If you are looking to buy a property on a golf course in Spain or in particular Murcia, then the Roda Golf Resort may be just what you are looking for.

Arta, Petra, Sineu and Capdepera Mallorca

Filed under: Balearic Islands,Spain — Tags: , , , , , — needahand @ 7:22 pm

Four lesser known towns on the island of Mallorca in the Balearic Islands, Spain, that may be of interest should you be visiting are Sineu, Petra, Arta and Capdepera. Some charming little towns, they all have a different history to tell. Sineu, located in the centre of the island was where King Jaime II built his royal palace, much of which exists to this day, and presently home to an order of nuns, you can also visit the Nostra Senyora de los Angeles church originally from the 13th century. Petra was the birthplace of Mallorca’s most famous son Fray Junípero Serra, famous as the founder of California after being sent there to found missions for Carlos III at the age of 58, visitors can see the house where he was born and the font where he was baptised. Arta is a charming little mountain town which was an Arab stronghold during their occupation of Mallorca, the town still has many remnants of its ancient fortifications, the nearby Ses Paisses is one of Majorca’s best know archaeological sites. Lastly we visit Capdepera, another ancient town dominated by its medieval castle – the largest on Majorca, a castle has existed here since Roman times and has been rebuilt numerous times by various civilisations. The nearby Caves of Artà, with immense cathedral sized caverns and interesting rock formations are well worth a visit.

The City of Murcia Spain

Filed under: Costa Calida,History,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , , , — needahand @ 11:30 am

The capital of the autonomous community of the same name, the city of Murcia is located in south-eastern Spain and has a population of around 433,000 and a municipal area of  881 square kilometres. Lying at the confluence of the River Guadalentin and River Segura, Murcia is in a rich and fertile area, despite experiencing some of the lowest rainfall in Spain. The surrounding fertile countryside is known as the “Huerta” (Orchard) and it is irrigated by the previously mentioned rivers, using methods introduced by the Romans and later the Moors. The city has a long history and was settled even before the Romans arrived in Spain. Its biggest changes occurred during the Arab occupation, when it was established as a provincial capital in 825 AD. Freed from Muslim control by the Castillians during the 13th century, Murcia subsequently came under the control of the  Kingdom of Aragon, and then back to Castile in 1304. After various periods of decline Murcia became wealthy during the 18th century as the city saw a boom in silk manufacture, though it was hit by a great earthquake in 1829, and was often flooded over the centuries. Murcia cathedral was built between 1394 and 1465, it displays various architectural styles including Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo. During the late 20th century Murcia city and region developed into a significant area for tourism, in particular golf resorts, which surround the city. Boasting some of the lowest rainfall in all of Spain the area is perfect for holidays all year round with Murcia weather conditions generally sunny and dry for over 300 days each year. Especially popular are the resorts along the Mar Menor coastline where such popular destinations as La Manga, Los Alcazares and San Javier, where the airport for the city is currently located, though a new airport is under construction as this article is being written are located. Murcia Map.

October 18, 2009

San Javier Costa Calida

Filed under: Costa Calida,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 2:38 pm

If you are travelling to south eastern Spain and heading for the Costa Calida region, there is a good chance that you will be arriving at San Javier airport. Generally called Murcia airport, it is actually some distance from the city of Murcia which can be confusing to visitors.

The town of San Javier itself is a traditional Spanish town with a resident population of about 23,000, it was named after Saint Francis Xavier. The municipal district of San Javier consists of 8 boroughs and covers an area of 74km2, it is an important area for agriculture as it has been for many centuries, though tourism is quickly taking over in importance.

The town sits beside the Mar Menor (“Lesser Sea”), the largest saltwater lagoon in Europe, and looks across to the famous resort of La Manga, which looks like a group of tower blocks rising vertically from the sea.

San Javier was originally developed during the Moorish occupation and it was their irrigation methods which enabled the region to be put to agriculture, they also developed fishing methods which were ideal for the Mar Menor’s conditions.

San Javier today is a busy little town enjoying a wonderful Mediterranean climate and typically the weather in San Javier is dry and sunny. This is a popular area for golfers as there are a number of complexes built or under construction nearby. To view a map of San Javier follow this link: San Javier Map.

The Weather on the Costa Blanca Spain

Filed under: Costa Blanca,Spain,Travel — Tags: , , , , , , — needahand @ 1:02 pm

Enjoying one of the finest climates in all of Spain, the Costa Blanca attracts holidaymakers all year round. Boasting over 300 days of sunshine every year and having some towns with unique micro-climates, such as Torrevieja, Santa Pola and Calpe, which are listed amongst the healthiest places on earth to live, the Costa Blanca weather making it a popular area for relocation, especially for north Europeans, attempting to escape the dismal, wet climates of their own countries. The summer months June to September are especially hot and very little rainfall is experienced during these times, the worst months to visit are generally November, February and March, the most pleasant months to visit being May and October, when nice weather can be expected without the high temperatures. Map of Costa Blanca.

October 17, 2009

Holsworthy Devon

Filed under: England,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 5:32 pm

A historic market town situated in the county of Devon, England, United Kingdom, Holsworthy has been settled since Saxon times, when it was a significant trading centre. Listed as part of Harold Godwinson’s estate in the Domesday Book of 1086, Holsworthy later became important as a market town, receiving charter’s for its weekly market. Standing on the River Deer, Holsworthy these days has a population of 2,256 and still boasts one of the largest cattle markets in south-west England. Holsworth is located near to the border with Cornwall and is east of Bude. Holsworthy Map.

Valldemossa Majorca

One of the big attractions on the cultural tourist route of Mallorca is the small town of Valldemossa, which sits in the mountains north of the capital Palma de Mallorca. What makes this place so special is that for a short time in the winter of 1838-39, it became the home of French novelist George Sand and her lover composer Frederick Chopin, who went there to escape the gossip of Paris, and also in the hope that it would aid Chopin’s bad health (he suffered from tuberculosis). Ironically that winter Valldemossa weather was not kind to its new visitors and it remained wet and windy for most of their stay. The celebrities were also apparently given the cold shoulder by the locals as they were not married, and George Sand wrote a derogatory book about their stay called “A Winter in Mallorca” in which she called the local inhabitants savages and thieves. Their visit has still not been forgotten and the book can still be found on sale in the town! Valldemossa Map.

San Antonio Ibiza

Filed under: Balearic Islands,Holidays,Spain — Tags: , , , , — needahand @ 4:12 pm

Nowadays one of the most popular resorts on the island, San Antonio Ibiza was formerly just a small fishing village which has existed since Roman times when it was known as Portus Magnus. Developed during the 1950’s and 60’s as a tourist resort, San Antonio went into decline in the 1980’s but sprang back again during the 1990’s as Ibiza became the clubbers capital of the world. Still popular as a family resort and as a ferry port (ferries arrive from Denia on the mainland), it is nonetheless mainly frequented by young clubbers who head for some of the most renowned clubs on the island such as Mambo, Eden and Es Paradis and party until the early hours (or even into the next day). This famous holiday island enjoys a wonderful climate and San Antonio weather is pretty reliable during the summertime when most visitors arrive, the winters are quieter and this could be the best time to visit if you are not looking for the clubbing scene. The attractive San Antonio Bay and busy fishing harbour are a popular place to visit, there are some fine beaches such as Cala Bassa and Cala Conta, and there are some interesting places to visit nearby. San Antonio Ibiza Map.

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