Guide to La Manga and Mar Menor, Spain, visit la manga, spain, La Manga, Mar Menor tourism information
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Places in Spain - Mar Menor

 

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Mar Menor (Little Sea) is a unique area located on the east coast of Spain, within the region of Murcia, just above the city of Cartagena. Few regions have the good fortune to have both a saltwater lake and a Mediterranean shore. The region of Murcia has both and the salt water lake with an area of 170sq.km is known as Mar Menor, the largest salt water lake in Europe. Mar Menor is part of the Costa Calida.

 
The area dates back to prehistoric times but most remains found date from the Roman and Arabic periods. The Romans valued the area highly and developed a valuable salt industry. It was about 1000 years ago that the lake took on the appearance it has today.

The Romans called it Belich and referred to it as a port of refuge. It was much deeper in those times so could cope with even the largest of vessels. Over the last hundred years or so, the area has developed into a tourist haven.

As well as the natural importance of the area the mud and clay are said to have therapeutic properties, known for centuries.

 
 
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The average annual temperature here is 17ºC and the average during the summer is above 21ºC. The winters are very mild, very rarely falling below 10ºC. Rain is also rare here. With over 3000 hours of sunshine a year and the mild climate, the water here can reach 30º in August.

The coast of the Mar Menor is flanked by small towns, in the past homes to fishermen and today, tourist enclaves. San Pedro del Pinatar in the north covers 21.7sq.km and has 15,200 inhabitants. This can swell to 60,000 in the summer months. Below this is San Javier with over 20,000 residents.

 
The area offers several golf courses, municipal parks and the famous resort of La Manga. La Manga has more than 40km of beaches and the unique possibility of choosing between two seas with very different water temperatures, one with waves and one practically calm all year long. The number of hotels at La Manga make up 50% of the total hotels in the region.

With so much water here there is no wonder that the area is a haven for water sports. The possibilities here are endless from sailing to diving, windsurfing and jet skiing.

 
Pictured right is the Mediterranean side of Mar Menor with the thin coastal strip of hotels and houses that runs the length of the lake. Along this strip (The Gran Via) you will find hotels, restaurants and bars as well as ample holiday lets in the form of apartments.

As you join the Gran Via you will find a large petrol station. Alongside is the very helpful tourist office.

 
 

 

 

 

 

Other places worthy of a visit are Santiago de la Riberera, Los Alcázares and old fishing village and the point at Cabo de Palos with its lighthouse.

If history is of interest to you then you must visit nearby Cartagena with its castles, forts and lighthouses.

 

 

Local markets
Monday - San Pedro del Pinatar
Tuesday - La Union, Los Belones, Los Alcazares
Wednesday - Santiago de la Ribera, Cartagena, El Mirador
Thursday - San Javier, Los Urrutias
Friday - El Algar, Torrevieja
Saturday - Los Narejos, Torre Pachero
Sunday - Cabo de Palos, Los Nieto
 
Local Post Codes
Lo Pagan, San Pedro del Pinatar
30740
Santiago de la Ribera
30720
San Javier
30730
Los Narejos, Los Alcazares
30710
Los Urrutias
30368
Los Nietos
30383
Mar de Cristal
30384
La Manga del Mar Menor
30380
Cabo de Palos
30370
Los Belones
30385
 

Important contacts for Mar Menor & La Manga area

Tourist office
968 146 136
Town Council
968 128 800
Library
968 141 399
Emergencies Murcia Region
112
Emergencies La Manga
061
Guardia Civil
062
Local Police
968 145 577
Alicante Airport
966 919 000
Radio Taxi La Manga
968 563 863
Renfe Cartagena
968 502 214
Post Office La Manga
968 564 981
Nautical clubs and marinas
Club Nautico Villa de San Pedro
968 182 678
Club Nautico lo Pagan
968 186 969
Club Nautico Mar Menor (Los Alcázares)
968 575 129
Puerto Deportivo Mar de Cristal
968 133 428
Club Nautico la Isleta
968 145 389
Club Nautico Dos Mares
968 140 117
 
 
     
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