The Costa Blanca
The Costa Blanca, Spain
The Costa Blanca (White Coast) refers to the over 200 kilometres of Mediterranean coastline belonging to the provinces of Valencia and Alicante in the Comunidad Valenciana, Spain.
It has a well developed tourism industry and is a popular destination for British and German tourists. It extends from the town Denia in the north to Torrevieja in the south.
The Costa Blanca includes some major tourist destinations of Benidorm, Alicante, Javea, and Calpe.
The name “Costa Blanca” was devised as a promotional name used by BEA when they launched their air service between London and Valencia in 1957.
The area is a very popular tourist destination because of its excellent weather and climate and the many superb sandy beaches, ideal for families, which stretch for miles and miles along the coast.
On the coast you can enjoy the energy and nightlife of the major tourist towns like Benidorm or alternatively within a short distance you can stay on the coast in quaint, quiet fishing villages like Calpe or Denia.
The Costa Blanca area is served by airports at Valencia (Manises airport), Alicante (El Altet airport) and Murcia (San Juan airport)and a motorway (the A-7 autopista) and the east coast main road the N332
Costa Blanca History
In 711 A.D. the Moors invaded Spain through Gibraltar and would occupy the region of Alicante by 718 A.D. Their occupation was to last nearly four hundred years and would mould the landscape of the region. The Moors introduced irrigation and the planting of oranges, peaches and almond orchards. The terraces seen on the hillsides throughout the region are an everlasting Moor legacy. The Moors would not be completely expelled until 1492, when Ferdinand and Isabella, the Catholic monarchs, finally took control of Granada.
In 1095 Spain became part of the North African Berber Empire and for another four hundred years the Moors and Christians would fight over control of Spanish soil. Alicante was gradually regained from the Moors in 1248 by Jaime I of Aragon. After their expulsion, the Moors continued to attack Spain. Between 1500-c1650 Berber pirate attacks were frequent all along the Mediterranean coastline. The first Spanish constitution was written in 1812 and following this the provincial boundaries were established, establishing the regions including Alicante and Murcia as they are today. In 1923, Miguel Primo de Rivera took control of Spain as a dictator, eventually forcing Alfonso XIII into exile.
The Spanish Civil War, (1936-1939) would divide the country. Alicante and Murcia would remain supporters of the Republican movement. In 1939 General Francisco Franco, the leader of the Nationalists took control of Spain. During the 1960’s and 70’s tourism exploded throughout the region to nearly 4,000,000 visitors a year.