Costa del Mar Menor

With its 180 km2 and a maximum depth of 7 metres, Mar Menor offers 73 km of coastline where a string of beaches of clear and shallow water stretch out as far as the eye can see. Right in front of Los Alcázares beach lies that whim of nature called La Manga, a narrow strip of sand some 24 km long which separates it from the Mediterranean sea.

On the inland side of La Manga, the climate is truly exceptional and ideal for all kinds of water sports all year around. Its shallow and tranquil waters (Esther Williams, star of Bathing Beauty, defined it as “the best and largest natural pool in the world”) are an ideal setting for the little ones to get introduced to the sea and for anyone interested in taking up water-based activities. Sailing in the Mar Menor is possible 365 days a year and on any type of boat. This is actually one of the few remaining places where lateen sails can still be seen.

Apart from Los Alcázares, the coast of the Mar Menor is dotted with many small towns where visitors can benefit from hypersaline waters, for instance:

The Mar Menor volcanic islands of Perdiguera, Barón, Redonda, Ciervo and Sujeto lie south of this small sea, whereas on the far side of La Manga, lie a few more: Isla Crosa, Isla del Farallón and Islas Hormigas.

To make the most of this exceptional tourist destination, visitors can go on one of the many boat trips across or around the Mar Menor.

Boat tours
Excursiones marítimas en Los Alcázares

Isla Grosa: A small island situated 2 km from La Manga del Mar Menor. The tourist boat departs from Pedruchillo beach, sails along the Estanco channel into the open Mediterranean sea, then around the Isla del Farallón to reach Isla Grosa. The island can also be reached in a kayak -though the distance is not big, it is advisable to be accompanied by a professional to avoid accidents- or renting a boat.

The five islands of Mar Menor: This archipelago is composed of El Ciervo, Rondella, Perdiguera, Sujeto and el Mayor or el Barón, the latter being the largest of the five. A path used to connect La Manga del Mar Menor to Isla del Ciervo, which could be visited on foot, but the currents have changed and the path is no longer visible. However, since the sea here is really shallow, it is still possible to “pass through the waters”. Beware that Isla Ciervo is a protected space, so you should be extra careful with the local flora and fauna, you should not touch anything and certainly not leave any rubbish behind.

Cabo de Palos: This fishing village on the shore of the Mediterranean sea is well known by its nineteenth century lighthouse. This area is popular with snorkellers and divers.

Bahía de Cartagena: This lovely scenic route allows you to discover the entire bay of Cartagena and affords wonderful views.

You might want to know

The hypersaline waters of Mar Menor, rich in iodine, are quite unique. The mud and clay found on the seabed are a real godsend because of the therapeutic properties of the sediments they contain, which have been used since ancient times with excellent results.

A study conducted by the University of Murcia has revealed that the waters of the Mar Menor have a high percentage of calcium, magnesium, potassium and fluorine, as well as anions, chloride and sulphate. The study has also revealed that their very fine sands, almost clayey, are at the root of the healing properties attributed to the mud. This is why the treatments with the thermal waters of the Mar Menor are highly beneficial for activating the blood system, removing toxins and inducing relaxation. Excellent results are also obtained in treatments against arthritis, rheumatism, tendinitis, alterations of the nervous system and joint-related pathologies. Salt water bathing can be enjoyed anywhere in the Mar Menor.