Take me there! Before I get head of myself, let’s note that Alacant is a city on the Mediterranean coast of Spain, known for its sandy beaches, historical sites, and vibrant nightlife. Here are some things to do in Alacant, plus info and travel tips. Let’s dig in.
Alacant Travel Guide
Is it Alacant or Alicante?
Actually, both! Alacant is the name of the city in the Valencian language, while Alicante is the name in Spanish (Castillian Spanish, to be precise). Here we’ll stick with Alacant to get more of that local vibe, even if Alicante is the name most often used.
Alacant is a city located on the Mediterranean coast of eastern Spain, in the province of the same name. It’s the provincial capital and second-largest city in the Valencian Community, after Valencia. With a population of over 330,000 people, Alicante is a busy hub of activity, known for beaches, beauty, food, history, and party scene. It’s very popular with tourists, and for good reason.
The city has a long history dating back to ancient times, when it was inhabited by the Iberians. It was later conquered by the Romans and then the Moors, and its strategic location on the Mediterranean made it an important port for trade and commerce. Today, Alacant is a modern city with a rich cultural heritage, reflected in its many museums, galleries, and festivals (and much more).
Things to Do
Visit the Castle of Santa Barbara
It’s a historic fortress that sits atop Mount Benacantil and offers panoramic views of the city.
Take a stroll along the Explanada de España
This is a promenade lined with palm trees and mosaicked pavement. This is one of the main places in Alacant, and it’s as sunny and beautiful as you’d expect. Here’s a walking video of the whole city that includes the Explanada de España:
Cool! Let’s keep checking out more things to do.
Go to the beach!
Alacant has several sandy beaches to choose from, including Playa del Postiguet, Playa de San Juan, and Playa de la Almadraba.
Check out the Mercado Central
This is a covered market featuring stalls selling fresh produce, seafood, and other local products.
Visit the Museum of Contemporary Art (MACA)
It showcases works by artists from the city and the surrounding region. If you like modern art, drop in.
Explore the city’s Old Quarter
It’s filled with narrow streets, historic buildings, and charming squares.
Go on a boat trip to the Tabarca Island Marine Reserve
This is a protected area home to a variety of marine life and bird species.
Try some of the local cuisine
Including dishes like paella, gazpacho, and horchata. Remember that Spain has some of the world’s best food! Pro tip: look for restaurants that are full of locals so you don’t fall into bad tourist traps (I got this from watching Andrew Zimmern’s show, whose name I’ve since forgotten).
Take a day trip to the nearby city of Elche
It’s known for its palm groves and the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Palmeral of Elche.
Enjoy the nightlife in Alacant
With options ranging from traditional Spanish bars to trendy clubs. This is one of the things the city’s known for, so don’t forget to party. Party hard, party all night long, ’cause you’re in Alacant!
Maybe that’s why my memories of this city are so hazy, LOL.
- The best time to visit is probably during the spring or fall, when the weather is pleasant and the crowds are not as heavy as in the summer.
- If you plan on visiting several attractions, consider purchasing the Alicante Card, which offers discounts and free admission to a variety of museums and other cultural sites.
- Be mindful of the siesta hours, when many businesses close for a few hours in the afternoon. This is less of an issue in cities popular with tourists, but some local businesses may still heed it.
- Don’t forget to try some of the local wines and olive oils, which are produced in the region.
- Wear sunscreen and stay hydrated, especially if you plan on spending a lot of time outdoors. The last thing you want is a painful sunburn ruining your holiday!
Summing It Up
In sum, Alacant is a city that offers something for most everyone, from its beautiful beaches and historical sites to its vibrant nightlife and delicious cuisine. Whether you’re interested in culture, nature, or just relaxing in the sun, drop in for a visit!
I leave you with another informative video: