Amazing places for a beach vacation in Spain

Spain beach

Spain is one of the most popular beach vacation destinations in the world. With 17 regions and countless amazing attractions, it’s little wonder that the country attracts millions of tourists every year. If there is one thing above all that keeps people coming back for more, it’s Spain’s beaches. The Spanish coastline is blessed with hundreds of miles of soft, white sand. Some Spanish beach resorts are well known and popular, while others are hidden gems, where you have the entire stretch of sand to yourself. Join us for a look at some of the very best beaches in Spain.

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Marbella

Marbella is a fantastic palace for a family vacation, and one of the premier beach resorts in Spain. It is home to some of the best beaches in the country and has long been a hotspot for the rich and famous. Evidence of the city’s high-flying guests can be seen at the mariner, which hosts glittering yachts and boats during the summer season. The charming Old Town is a great place to take the whole family for traditional Spanish food. There are several incredible beaches in Marbella. The resort is part of the iconic Costa Del Sol, the king of Spanish beach vacation destinations. 

Playa de la Levante, Marbella

The best beaches in Marbella

Playa de la Levante

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Playa de la Levante is a fantastic Marbella beach. It boasts miles of fine, white sand lapped by the inviting, cool waves of the Mediterranean. It is in the affluent Puerto Banus area of Marbella, close to the marina, and is a popular spot amongst visitors to the city. There are bars and restaurants along the beach, perfect for grabbing cooling refreshments, and plenty of shady areas to protect yourself from the beating Mediterranean sun. Playa de la Levante attracts a lot of people to its soft white sand, so in peak season, it does get crowded. If you’re visiting in the hot Andalusian summer months, try to get to the beach early and enjoy a more peaceful Playa de la Levante, before the crowds descend and the temperature rises.

Cabopino Beach

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If you’re looking for a slightly less crowded Marbella beach experience, but with a lively atmosphere, Playa de la Cabopino might be for you. 8 miles from the center of Marbella, this 1500m long stretch of sand is so big, that even in the summer months, you’ll be able to find a piece of it for yourself. Flanked by the magnificent Artola sand dunes on one side, and Cabopino Port on the other, the beach is on a particularly beautiful stretch of the Costa del Sol.

Cabopino Beach has fine, soft sand and gentle waves, so is a popular spot with families, and the area around the Artola sand dunes is popular with the LGBTQ+ community, as well as being clothing optional. There are plenty of great amenities on Playa de la Cabopino, including places to hire pedalos, boats and embark on dolphin-watching trips, as well as numerous bars and restaurants. It’s easy to reach by car from Marbella (you can hire a car with our fantastic Travel Extras), or there is a bus you can catch from the center of Marbella.

Nikki Beach

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Nikki Beach is the most exclusive beach in Marbella. Reached from a cobbled boulevard lined with swaying palm trees, this is the place where to well-to-do spend their Marbella Beach vacations. For sunset champagne and beach parties, it’s the place to be. If you’re in Marbella to sample the infamous party scene, Nikki Beach is a great place to start. Part of the Playa Real de la Zaragoza, it is one of the most beautiful beaches in  Marbella, so worth a visit even if you don’t plan on staying for the day. It’s easily the priciest beach in Marbella. Renting a sun lounger will start at $55 per day, and can be as much as $338 per day. It is not the best beach for families, as the amenities, while plentiful, are geared towards good times and unforgettable beach parties than fun times with the kids. 

Playa de Nueva Andalucia

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Just west of Puerto Banus is one of the region’s most beautiful beaches. Also known as Nueva Andalusia and El Duque, it’s a little different from the powder-fine sandy beaches we’ve seen so far. The sand is typical of the Mediterranean, in that it is coarser and darker than others nearby, and the edge of the beach is dotted with coves, making for a very picturesque scene quite unlike anything else in Marbella. This uniqueness makes it very popular with both tourists and locals, and in peak season, it can be hard to get some space if you don’t plan your day carefully.

If you can’t get a space on the sand, there are plenty of fantastic bars and restaurants to settle down in, all offering equally wonderful views of the beach and the Mediterranean Sea. Being a little outside the main drag of Marbella, prices for food and drinks are a bit lower on Playa de Nueva Andalusia. There are also places to rent water sports equipment if you fancy having some fun on the water.

Benidorm

Once a humble fishing village, Benidorm has grown rapidly into one of the most famous beach cities in Spain. The temptation is to think of Benidorm as simply a place of package vacations and rowdy nightlife, but there is more to this Costa Blanca destination. Benidorm is one of the best places in Spain for a family beach vacation, with countless theme parks and fun activities for the whole gang to enjoy. It is also a great place to escape the cold for a bit of winter sun, the Benidorm weather is notoriously good all year round. On top of all that, it has some fantastic beaches.

Benidorm beach

Top beaches in Benidorm

Playa de Poniente

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Playa de la Poniente is the biggest beach in Benidorm, with a staggering 3000m of clean white sand. The beach has been awarded the coveted Blue Flag, meaning that it is clean, environmentally responsible, and safe. While many tourists flock to the more well-known Levante Beach just up the coast, Playa de Poniente is preferred by locals in Benidorm and is generally a calmer experience. The beach has great amenities, which are available 11 months of the year, including equipment hire, restaurants, free parking, and disabled access. It is also a paradise for water sports lovers, with options to try kayaking, parasailing, and scuba diving.

Cala Mal Pas

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Take a trip to Benidorm’s enigmatic Old Town for the next beach on our list; Cala Mal Pas. This quiet, secluded beach is a change of pace from the lively beaches that Benidorm is renowned for, and is ideal if you want to get away from the hustle, bustle, and crowds. Cala Mal Pas also has a Blue Flag award, and the water is calm and shallow, thanks to the rocks sheltering it at either end. These conditions make it great for families to enjoy the water in safety, and there is a rescue service on the beach for added peace of mind. The beach is also great for snorkeling, but be sure to bring your own, as there are no rental facilities on Cala Mal Pas. There are showers and sunbed rentals available, but aside from that, amenities are scarce.

Playa de Levante

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One of the most popular beaches not only in Benidorm but in the whole of Spain, Playa de Levante is visited by thousands of sun-seekers every year. At 2000 meters long, there’s plenty of space for everyone, but even so, the crowds gather from early in the morning to stake their claim on a patch of sand. Playa de Levante benefits from having constant sunshine from dawn until dusk, so you can easily spend an entire day there. The water is clear, shallow, and calm, so it is perfect for families with children who want to play in the sea.

There are also designated children’s play areas, with inflatables and slides. For the more adventurous types, water sports equipment is available to rent, along with parasols and sunbeds for drying off on. The beach has excellent disabled access and plenty of places to grab a refreshment and a bite to eat throughout the day. The thing that Play de Levante is most famous for is the nightlife. As the sun sinks below the horizon, the bright lights of Benidorm begin to shine, with beach clubs and bars offering pulsating music and parties well into the early hours.

Cala Almandrava

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Just up the coast from Playa de Levante, this secluded and relaxed beach seems like a world away from the crowds and commotion of Benidorm. A small, rocky cove fringed with soft sand, Cala Almadrava feels much wilder and more isolated than the nearby city suburbs would suggest. At just 100 meters long, the beach is one of the smaller ones in the area and is open to both traditional bathers and naturists. The protected rocky cove has calm, clear water which is perfect for snorkeling, and the rock pools and crevices harbor scores of underwater life. There are no amenities at Cala Almandrava, so make sure that you take everything you need for the day. The beach does have a lifeguard, but only during the summer months, so take care if you’re visiting during the off-peak seasons.

Barcelona

Barcelona, the capital of Catalonia, is one of the most vibrant, exciting, and irresistible Spanish vacation destinations. When you think of Barcelona, you might think of the towering turrets of Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia, the Barcelona cathedral dominating the city center. Or perhaps your mind goes to Las Ramblas, the famous tree-lined avenue lined with tapas bars and high-end shops. It might surprise you to know, that Barcelona is also a fabulous beach vacation destination in Spain. With numerous pretty stretches of sand to enjoy, Barcelona is the perfect combination of city break and beach vacation.

Barcelona beach

Amazing beaches in Barcelona

Playa Barceloneta

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This is the most well-known Barcelona beach, right in front of the city and with stunning views of both the eclectic skyline of Barcelona and the Mediterranean Sea. By day, the beach is popular with families, couples, and friends enjoying the soft white sand and calm sea. At night, partygoers flock to Barceloneta to enjoy DJ sets at the bars and clubs. Barceloneta Beach has some great amenities, including equipment hire stations, bars, and restaurants.

Levant Beach

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Barcelona’s newest beach attracts a hip, young crowd. With amenities including a skate park, basketball courts, and volleyball nets, it’s a big hit with families and those looking for an active day at the beach. It is pretty quiet compared to Barcelona’s other beaches, as it is further out from the city center, but still easy to reach. Most tourists stick with the popular beaches in the heart of Barcelona, so you’ll be among a more local crowd at Levant Beach.

Playa Montgat

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You need to hop in a car or take the train to reach this beach, which is about 30 minutes down the coast from Barcelona. When you need a break from the intense heat and crowds of Barcelona, it’s well worth the trip. In fact, this is where the locals come when they want some time to relax. Playa Montgat is a collection of three separate beaches; Pla de Montgat, Sant Joan, and Les Moreres, spread across 2km of beautiful white sand. It’s a fantastic spot for water-sports enthusiasts, as well as families who find the crowds of central Barcelona a little too intense. The atmosphere is relaxed and restful. There are numerous bars and restaurants lining the sand, and plenty of space to yourself to enjoy the beautiful Mediterranean coastline.

Sant Sebastia

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Barceloneta’s next-door neighbor is a little quieter than Barcelona’s most popular beach but still has a fun, vibrant atmosphere. The beach is easy to find thanks to the iconic sail of the W Hotel. It is a sporty beach, with running and cycling lanes, and is also particularly popular with the LGBTQ+ community. If you want all the fun of a great city beach, with fewer crowds, Sant Sebastia is a perfect choice.

Tenerife

Tenerife, in the Spanish Canary Islands, is one of the most alluring beach vacation destinations in the world. With year-round sunshine and warm temperatures, it is a popular winter sun destination. Tonnes of family attractions make it a hit with travelers young and old alike. The beaches are magnificent in Tenerife, a patchwork of sand and sea that pays testament to the geological wonderland of this Atlantic island.

Black sand beach in Tenerife

The best beaches in Tenerife

Playa de la Arena

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This beautiful beach is found in the south of Tenerife, right in the middle of the most popular tourist resorts. The resort of Playa de la Arena is a natural, rugged, and wild bit of coastline. It’s much quieter than buzzy neighboring resorts Los Cristianos and Los Gigantes, and is great for couples and families wanting to see a quieter side of Tenerife’s south coast. The star of the show is Playa de la Arena’s beach, which has pure black sand.

Tenerife has a few black sand beaches, which are a result of the island’s volcanic history. Tenerife is dominated by the breathtaking Mount Tiede volcano, and the entire landscape is influenced by volcanic geology. Swaying palm trees, glittering water, and stunning views of La Gomera on the horizon all give Playa de la Arena a unique, rather otherworldly feel. This beach is in the prime spot in Tenerife to enjoy amazing weather all year round. It’s ideal for a family winter beach vacation. Another bonus is that black sand retains the sun’s heat even better than white sand does, so it’s a great place for soaking up some Canary Island warmth.

Playa Fanabe

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Located in the popular Costa Adeje, Playa Fanabe is one of the finest white sand beaches for family beach vacations in Tenerife. Alongside idyllic white sand and sparkling blue sea are a plethora of fantastic amenities, offering everything you need for an unforgettable day at the beach. Playa Fanabe has access to bars, restaurants, lifeguards, showers, police, sun lounger rentals, and water sports equipment, making it a safe, clean, and fun place for the whole family in Tenerife.

Playa San Telmo

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There is more to a Tenerife beach vacation than lazy days soaking up the sun. Heading to the north of the island, we find Playa San Telmo in Puerto de la Cruz. To begin with, this side of Tenerife is much quieter than the south. It also has a more authentic feeling away from the resorts and big hotels. It also has wilder weather, with larger waves and stronger winds. Playa San Telmo is another beautiful black sand beach, but very different from Playa de la Arena in the south. It’s a beach for exploring, rather than relaxing. At low tide, the ocean retreats to reveal scores of natural pools and coves, perfect for swimming in.

There are very few facilities on the beach, although there is good wheelchair access. Don’t let a lack of amenities put you off though. Playa San Telmo is one of the most scenic and beautiful beaches on Tenerife. It offers a unique experience to explore natural pools that you won’t find elsewhere.

Los Guios

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We’ve saved one of Tenerife’s most dramatic beaches until last! In the beautiful resort of Los Gigantes, we find Los Guios, the area’s beach. Beaches are not plentiful in Los Gigantes. Instead, the coastline is dominated by soaring cliffs that rise dramatically out of the Atlantic Ocean. Los Guios is a small patch of black sand sheltered by the cliffs, offering a place to sunbathe with a breathtaking view. The water here is generally calm and clear, so good for swimming, although if the wind gets up so do the waves. Sun loungers and parasols can be rented, and the next-door harbor offers plenty of water sports to enjoy. Los Guois is a key part of the charming Los Gigantes resort. This popular resorts is home to authentic local restaurants and activities including whale and dolphin safaris.

Mallorca

Mallorca (or Majorca, if you prefer) is one of Spain’s perennially popular vacation spots. The island is littered with gorgeous beaches for all tastes, 262 of them to be exact, from popular party destinations to peaceful hidden gems.

Mallorca beach

Top beaches in Mallorca

Alcudia Beach

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We’re kicking off our list of the best beaches in Mallorca with the island’s largest beach. At 70km long, Alcudia Beach is a whopper. With thousands of people flocking to its golden sand shores each year, it’s just as well that there’s plenty of space. The water at Alcudia Beach is clear, calm, and warm, making it particularly great for families. With a large amount of facilities, including bars, restaurants, and equipment hire, it’s got all the gear to help you have a memorable beach vacation.

Es Trenc

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This beach is very famous amongst locals and travelers in the know for its astonishing natural beauty. Situated on the south of Mallorca, near to the island’s famous salt flats, Ses Salines, the fine white stretch of sand is backed by fragrant pine forests and cactus-covered dunes. The water is incredible, boasting a turquoise hue that’s so vibrant, you might think that you’re dreaming. The water is shallow and clear along the edge of the beach. This makes Es Trec a great beach for families with youngsters who want to splash in the water.

Another thing that makes Es Trenc stand out is the noticeable lack of commercialization compared to many of Mallorca’s other beaches. This is a result of tireless efforts from the local community to keep it natural, therefore, amenities are not prevalent. Some sun loungers and parasols may be available to hire, but it’s worth bringing a few snacks along for your day at this Mallorca beach.

Calo d’es Moro

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Mallorca is renowned for its pretty little cove beaches, and Calo d’es Moro is one of the finest on the island. It is tiny, at just 40m long, but it is the incredible view that is the selling point here. The cove is flanked by steep rocky cliffs and pine forests, creating an enclave of sparkling blue water that is sheltered from the elements. The trek to Calo d’es Moro is one for adventure lovers. It’s a steep clamber down a rocky path to reach the reward of the soft white sand.

Cala Agulla

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In the north of Mallorca is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Mediterranean, Cala Agulla. The beach is uncommercialized, with just a few parasols dotting the sand and no high-rise hotels to be seen. There’s a protection order on the area, which means that Cala Agulla will remain natural for many years to come. The warm Mediterranean waters at Cala Agulla are shallow and clear. With lifeguards on duty year-round, it is a fantastic and safe beach vacation for families.

Book a villa for your Spain beach vacation

Here at Top Villas, we have a wonderful choice of luxurious vacation homes in Spain, perfect for any beach getaway. Find and book your ideal home on our main site, or contact our knowledgeable team for more help and information.