Insider's Guide to Costa Blanca

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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A sea of glittering skyscrapers lines five perfect kilometers of golden sand, caressed by remarkably calm, clean seas and thousands of relaxed and slightly sunburned travelers. Welcome to Benidorm, birthplace of the package tour, and home to more than 1,000 restaurants, 30 discos, a dozen cabarets, four theme parks, and some 50,000 rooms where you can crash for a few hours, if you absolutely must.

Choose your beach, Playa de Poniente to the right, Playa de Levante to the left, where you can enjoy more than 300 days of sunny skies every year. In summer months, it is an absolute bacchanal, though there's always plenty of family-friendly fun as well.

There's even culture - the casco antiguo (old town), atop the rocky point that separates those two glistening swaths of sand, has a few older buildings and cobbled streets... today filled with discos, bars and caf├ęs. Heck, you know exactly why you're here in beautiful Benidorm, so enjoy.

Practical Info

Benidorm has been a destination for holidaymakers and retirees since the 1970s, particularly from the UK and Ireland. Thus, there's a large English-speaking expat population and plenty of accessible tourist infrastructure, even if you left your phrasebook on the plane.

Most people arrive at busy Alicante Airport (ALC), 58km (36mi) southwest of Benidorm. Note that taxis should use the set rate, not meters, which will result in a more expensive trip. Shuttle companies offer less expensive door-to-door transfers, a better deal for solo travelers and couples.

Buses are the cheapest way between the two coastal cities, and run hourly from the airport to the Benidorm bus station 8am until 11pm. The trip takes just under 1 hour.

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