The bustling town of Santa Pola is situated just under an hour’s drive south from Benidorm and offers visitors a great range of activities and sightseeing opportunities during a day trip. The town’s main economy comes from fishing and tourism, but also has a strong tradition in craft making, and its salt lakes still remain in production supplying Europe’s colder countries with road salt. Santa Pola really livens up during the summer months when the population swells to more than double, with many of its summer visitors coming from inland Spain.
Attractions & Activities
Santa Pola is the closest point on the Costa Blanca to the popular Tabarca Island, a haven for Barbary pirates in days of old and a modern day tourist magnet, attracting up to 3,000 visitors per day during the peak summer months. Declared a protected marine reserve and bird sanctuary in 1986 the island is a favourite destination for snorkelling and scuba diving. There are a selection of boat trips to the island including a glass bottom boat offering submarine views of the beautiful underwater world.
Santa Pola’s central beaches are connected by a picturesque 7 kilometre promenade, and its outer lying beaches can be reached via a series of marked walking trails. The town’s large marina and port area harbour the largest fishing boat fleet of any port on the Mediterranean sea. The town offers some excellent water sports, and in recent years has become a popular destination for a variety of wind and board sports such as kite surfing. The port area is home to a lively fish market, and visitors can also explore Santa Pola’s large Monday and Saturday morning street markets.
The town boasts excellent facilities and an abundance of shops, cafes, bars and restaurants where visitors can enjoy the delicious cuisine of the region, and be sure not to miss tasting some of the wonderfully fresh fish and seafood that comes straight from the market. Younger kids will have a great time at the Pola Park Funfair, and nature enthusiasts and keen walkers will enjoy exploring the trails through the Natural Park of Salinas de Santa Pola that is an important RAMSAR site. The town’s well established Dive Academy Santa Pola offer all levels of PADI scuba diving courses, as well as daily fun dives for novices and snorkelling adventures in some of the coastlines most beautiful spots.