Benidorm Travel Guide
Overview Rows of shops selling beach buckets and flip-flops line the
seafront of Benidorm, the Costa Blanca's largest and liveliest
holiday resort town, where hordes of tourists throng the streets 24
hours a day. Of the thousands who come to holiday here on the
town's three miles (5km) of white sandy beaches each year, many
have stayed and purchased apartments in the numerous blocks that
now dot the skyline. Benidorm, north of Alicante, is the party
capital of the Costa Blanca with an unrivalled nightlife and a
daytime carnival-like beach culture.
Remnants of Benidorm's historic past are now well hidden, but
tucked into the Casco Antiguo section are the ruins of a castle
built in the 14th century to fend off Berber pirates. Benidorm's
spectacular sunsets are best viewed from the castle's
mirador (balcony). The place to see and be seen in the
town, however, is the Playa de Levante, a two-mile (3km) boardwalk
lined with trendy cafés and bars. Benidorm is a wildly
popular resort with all the amenities one would expect.
Benidorm © po.psi.que
Shopping The streets of Benidorm are lined with gift shops catering for
people on holiday and the supermarkets are fully stocked with
well-known brands. Prices in the holiday resort are comparatively
cheap, particularly alcohol and cigarettes. There is an open-air
market every Wednesday and a rastro (car boot sale) every
Sunday next to the railway station. The town of Altea is worth a
visit on Tuesdays for its outdoor market or simply for a leisurely
stroll along the promenade, while Alicante is a good destination
for shoppers in search of some more sophisticated shops.
Restaurants Top-rated restaurants in Benidorm include Paneil's, China
Garden, India Gate, Mme Butterfly, The Vagabond and Witches Bistro.
All the major fast food restaurants are also available and the old
harbour is the best place to try out the local cuisine. Benidorm
has a wide range of restaurants catering to all budgets.
Nightlife Benidorm is one of the biggest nightspots on the Med with
something to suit all preferences. There are loads of bars hosting
live shows, quizzes, bingo, karaoke and drag shows, and lots of
live bands playing everything from Abba to ZZ Top. Those looking
for a party in Benidorm should go to Wheeltappers, Sinatras, the
Palladium or the Stardust Benidorm. It is one of the best resorts
in Spain for those seeking out a fun and varied nightlife.
Activities Benidorm's major holiday attractions are its spectacular
beaches. The two huge sweeping crescents stretch for over three
miles (5km) and are known as Levante and Poniente - Spanish for
sunrise and sunset. They are kept meticulously clean and are
consistently voted among the cleanest and most popular beaches in
Europe. All sorts of water sports can be organised from the
beaches, from swimming and diving off the man-made rafts to jet
skiing, banana boat rides, parasailing and scuba diving. On the
outskirts of town tourists can visit some water parks or Terra
Mitica, Spain's largest theme park.
There are also loads of options for those wishing to escape
Benidorm for a day: beautiful mountainous countryside surrounds the
holiday resort and jeep safaris and cycle trips around this rugged
interior are becoming increasingly popular. Alicante, 25 miles
(40km) south of Benidorm, is the Costa Blanca's main city and has a
number of interesting sights. Other good days out include a coach
trip to the ancient mountain fortress at Guadalest, built by the
Moors in 715, and the town of Altea with its delightful medieval
cobbled streets and beautiful Mediterranean views, eight miles
(13km) north of Benidorm.
Negatives Benidorm is not a good choice for those wanting an authentic, or
peaceful Spanish holiday, but for those looking for entertainment
and nightlife it can't be beaten. The resort abounds with hundreds
of persistent touts trying to sell tourists everything from
trinkets to timeshare apartments. There are also insistent
promotions staff outside the bars and restaurants, but these may be
worth chatting up as they sometimes offer free drinks.
Situated on the outskirts of Benidorm, Terra Mitica is Spain's
largest theme park and, with its rides, shows, restaurants, and
shops, can be a great day for the whole family. Rides like the
Tizona, an inverted roller coaster that reaches speeds of 62mph
(100kmh)... see full details