Originally a salt-mining centre, Torrevieja is now a bustling city, and is one of the fastest growing places in Spain. The city has, however, managed to keep its character and is much loved by Brits, Germans, Irish and Scandinavians as well as Spanish families. It’s even earned the nickname “La Playa de Madrid” – Madrid’s beach – as so many urbanites from the capital have fallen for its charms.
Salt is still an important industry here, and you’ll pass some of the salt lakes on the drive from the airport. The city’s name means “Old Tower” in Spanish and comes from the distinctive landmark. Tourism and fishing are also important to the city’s economy – but effective planning controls limit the size of high rise hotels. The busy harbour area houses the fishing fleet as well as many luxury yachts.
Coupled with its near perfect climate, recognised by the World Health Organisation as being one of the healthiest in the world, and abundance of salt, Torrevieja is home to numerous spas where people can bathe in the waters. They are said to relieve arthritis and soothe skin disorders.
The area surrounding Torrevieja is not as mountainous as many parts of the Costa Blanca, being mostly flat with long sandy beaches. The Playa del Cura is perhaps Torrevieja’s most famous beach, conveniently located in the city centre. A large promenade, lined with restaurants and bars, links the north and south beaches. Stop and enjoy a dish of “Caldero,” a hearty fish stew made from the day’s catch, or “Pulpo secco,” the regional appetiser of sun-dried octopus roasted on an open fire.
Torrevieja is a cosmopolitan city which both absorbs and enjoys its expat populations. English and Irish pubs sit happily beside Spanish bars, providing a contrast to the Mediterranean lifestyle. English-speakers are well catered for as Torrevieja has two international schools and numerous clubs and societies specifically devoted to these residents.
Alicante airport is well served by flights from many UK locations taking between two-and-a-half and three hours to get there. Torrevieja is about 40 minutes drive to the south. Alternatively, you can fly to Murcia in about the same time, then drive the 25km or take a taxi (approx €40) to your destination. Regular buses run in and around the city.
Where to Buy Property in Torrevieja
Cities by the sea offer the best of both worlds for property hunters and Torrevieja is no exception, with apartments and villas to suit every budget. Harbour-side properties justifiably command high prices, but you can still find 3-bedroomed apartments close to all amenities for around €90,000.
A 3-bedroomed penthouse with spectacular sea and city views is only a little pricier at €102,000. If you’re prepared to forego the sea views and settle for vistas over the national park, you can bag a bargain 2-bedroomed penthouse for just €56,000.
Apartments to the north of the city along Los Locos beach are also sought after, and being just out of the centre are usually quieter. Here a 3-bedroomed flat with sea views and a communal pool jumps up in price to €237,000. Those with money to burn and a flair for gardening in sub-tropical conditions might be tempted to splash out the €1,150,000 asking price for this 4-bedroomed villa.
The El Chapperal area appeals to those seeking a quieter suburb, and a 2-bedroomed detached villa with its own 1-bed apartment upstairs will set you back €250,000.
Just 4km south of the city, Playa Flamenca offers properties with price tags to suit more budget conscious buyers. Here, a 3-bedroomed town house close to the sea is €109,995 and 3-bedroomed detached villas fetching around €150,000.