One of the stops on Zeis and my Spanish road trip this summer was Benidorm. Benidorm is a coastal town in the province of Alicante. Before the 60’s, it was a small fishing village but in the 80’s it transformed into the home of highrises and packaged holidays. Europeans flocked to Benidorm for its year round sunshine. Benidorm has a skyline that might almost compete with that of New York City. In fact, Spaniards call it the “Manhattan of the Mediterranean”. It has the most high-rise buildings per capita in the world. Part of me was curious but part of me was hesitant to be visiting.
We drove from Barcelona to Benidorm which was about a 4 1/2 hour drive. As we got closer the scenery got prettier and prettier. When we entered the town of Benidorm, we were greeted by skyscrapers. But these were not like the skyscrapers you find in Manhattan. These were set against massive, rocky cliffs. The contrast was quite impressive and beautiful.
Our first beach stop was Playa Levante. This is the most touristic part of the town with bars, restaurants and hotels that cater mainly to a British tourist. The views from above were beautiful. Getting to the rocky beach was a little challenging as we stepped down the side of a rocky cliff. Once we arrived at our little beach, we realized that we were not the only ones. The small rocky beach was filled with tourists. The rocks made relaxing a bit uncomfortable. When Zeis and I decided to take a dip, we carefully stepped on slippery rocks and in the water were shiny blue fish that were just a bit too close for my comfort. A change of scenery was needed.
We drove to the other side of Benidorm to Playa de Poniente. Now this was a beautiful beach. The sun was close to setting so we were able to catch the last few rays of the day. The weather was warm and so was the water. The water was crystal clear with soft, fine sand. Now this was a beach we could get used to.
After our fun in the sun, we strolled around the neighborhood and finished off with some tasty tapas and ice cold cervecitas. In the end, Benidorm turned out to be a pleasant stop on our journey.