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Costa Blanca/Spain

Introducing Costa Blanca

The long stripe of the Costa Blanca (White Coast) is one of Europe’s most heavily visited areas. If you’re after a secluded midsummer beach, stay away – or head inland to enjoy traditional villages and towns that have scarcely heard the word tourism. Then again, if you’re looking for a lively social scene, good beaches and a suntan…

It isn’t all concrete and package deals. Although the original fishing villages have long been engulfed by the sprawl of resorts, a few Old Town kernels, such as those of Xàbia (Jávea) and Altea, still survive.

In July and August it can be tough finding accommodation if you haven’t booked. Out of season, those places remaining open usually charge far less than in high summer.

Most buses linking Valencia and Alicante head down the motorway, making a stop in Benidorm. A few, however, call by other intervening coastal towns. A smart new tram plies the scenic route between Alicante and Denia. Renfe trains connect Valencia with Gandia.