Province Hotels / Travel
Costa de la Luz Tourist
Information by Gary Marshall
The Costa de la Luz is the
name given to the stretch of Andalucian coastline between the Costa del
Sol and the Portuguese border. It is divided into two main parts; the eastern
section, which is situated in the province of Cadiz, and the western section,
located within Huelva province. Literally meaning, 'Coast of Light', the
Costa de la Luz is a relatively undeveloped part of Spain, notable for
its miles of unspoilt beaches and beautiful natural scenery.
low-key town of Ayamonte and the neighbouring resort of Isla Canela, which
boasts a 4-mile-long Blue Flag beach, are both situated just over the border
from Portugal. To the east, surrounded by an area of wetlands, is the popular
beach resort of Isla Cristina. The large port of Huelva lies between the
marshy estuaries of the Tinto and Odiel rivers, around 30 miles east of
Ayamonte. Although Huelva is not a particularly attractive city, there
are a number of important historic sights in this area, including the La
Rabida monastery where Christopher Columbus planned his voyages to the
A large part of the 40-mile
stretch of coastline between Huelva and the River Guadalquiver borders
the Donana National Park. This important area of wetlands is home to several
rare animal species, notably the elusive Iberian Lynx and the Spanish imperial
eagle. Next to the Donana reserve is the purpose-built resort of Matalascanas,
which boasts a terrific sandy beach.
eastern section of the Costa de la Luz begins at the fishing port of Sanlucar
de Barrameda. To the southeast of Sanlucar is the town of El Puerto de
Santa Maria, where Columbus lived for several years during the 15th century.
As well as several historic attractions, El Puerto is also known for its
sherry bodegas and excellent seafood restaurants. Just a short distance
from El Puerto, on a rocky peninsula jutting into the Atlantic, is the
old city of Cadiz. Founded over 3,000 years ago, Cadiz enjoyed its greatest
period of wealth during the 18th and 18th centuries when it was the major
gateway to the New World.
Many people regard the 60
miles of coastline between Cadiz and Tarifa as the true Costa de la Luz.
Other than Novi Sancti Pacti, there are no large tourist developments here,
just a series of small towns and villages alongside vast beaches of fine
white sand. Several of these villages, including El Palmar, Los Canos de
Meca and Zahara de los Atunes, are situated close to the famous Cape of
Trafalgar. As you continue southeastwards along the coast, you will arrive
at the windsurfer's paradise of Tarifa. Situated just eight miles from
North Africa, the resort has a very laid-back feel, even when it is swamped
by tourists during the height of summer. Tarifa is also famous for being
Europe's southernmost town.
There are two airports that
serve the Costa de la Luz, Jerez Airport is situated around 35 miles inland
from Cadiz, while Gibraltar airport is located to the east of Tarifa.
Province Hotels / Cadiz
Hotels / Travel