The Mar Menor
or "sea little" is the largest salt water lagoon in Europe, and it is fringed by fine beaches. It is cut off from the Med by the famous La Manga strip. The relatively high salt content of the sea water is ideal for floating which in turn ensures it is a good area to practise all water sports. Supposedly the salty "aqua" is good for skin irritations plus, arthritis, gout, and rheumatism. There are loads of things to do around and in the Mar Menor or it is a great region to live or simply vacation. Below are my personal 5 favourite things to do or see in the area:
In Santiago de la Ribera is the seafood restaurant Miguel Pescaderia, although it may not look very special at first sight. You actually walk right through the fishmongers to the restaurant where there are large windows that are usually open, to ensure that feel of alfresco dining. There are also a few tables actually on the fine beach during the high season. The views of the Mar Menor are great with the small Spanish timber fishing smacks bobbing at their moorings. The service is first class, and the fish could not be fresher and cooked deliciously to perfection. We have dined there on several occasions, with friends, family and children, plus a romantic evening and never been dissappointed.
Aire Murcia - Every couple of years there is an Air display called Aire Murcia over the Mar Menor. Airforces from across the world send their very best planes and pilots to display, including the Red Arrows who are normally there. It is usually held early in June, ensuring every beach round the Mar Menor is jammed full of locals and tourists. All day long the elite pilots of the world fly across the Mar Menor as families enjoy the warm sun and watching the display. There are even lots of stalls selling drinks, food, or souvenirs, plus a free bouncy castle for the kids!
Mud bathing in a small seaside town called Lo Pagan on the Mar Menor it is a custom apparently to go mud bathing, something that you pay hard cash for in any beauticians in the UK! Supposedly good for eczema and various other skin problems.
The La Manga
Strip, is the isthmus that separates the Mar Menor from the open ocean. It is famous for the 5 star golf and sports resort where the many football teams go to train in the winter. The actual La Manga Club
has good restaurants, shops, a golf club (plus 2 courses), a couple of quality hotels, and many beautiful villas among the many facilities.
is a great little beach side, Costa Calida town. It is quite upmarket and very Spanish, although on the downside it is over flown by planes landing at Murcia airport. It is nice to have a stroll, especially along the esplanade that runs alongside the beach, and perhaps stop for breakfast or drink. There are many quality Spanish bars and restaurants along here with wonderful views of the water with the La Manga strip in the distance. The local children play on the beach whilst their parents read or just wait for their food to be served. All along the beach side walk way there are many statues, gardens and play areas. The climbing frames for the kids are great and appear to be very well maintained and always seem to be full of young children watched over by their grandparents.