If you are imagining vast semi deserted beaches of white sand and turquoise sea, you don't need to go to the Caribbean. You can still find them in the Cabo de Gata National Park in the Spanish Mediterranean. There are no crowds, no buildings and few people. Walk from the pretty resort of San José or hire a car and sunbathe, skinny dip, windsurf and sail. It is beautiful.
The rugged volcanic rock formations that provide the backdrop to this unspoilt and rural coastal region are reason enough to explore. Now a protected Natural Park and UNESCO biosphere reserve, the Cabo de Gata shoreline is scattered with wild beaches and small fishing villages, miraculously untainted by mass tourism. We enjoyed the whitewashed simplicity of La Isleta and Las Negras with their sandy coves, beached fishing boats and the occasional bar or fish restaurant overlooking the beach. More adventurous visitors could sample some of the local diving or coastal walking, though soaking in the simple beauty of this relatively undiscovered corner of Spain is pleasure enough.
Cabo de Gata, Almeria, Spain
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