Welcome to one of the most stunning urban bays on the Mediterranean
About the town
Águilas, with 35,000 inhabitants, is located at the southernmost point of the Region of Murcia, 100 km from the city of Murcia, neighbouring the Province of Almería.
A beautiful and unknown fishing town, on a coast of beaches and natural cliffs, it is one of the last almost-virgin areas of the Mediterranean.
A panoramic view of the tow
As a port town, Águilas has been inhabited by different cultures since ancient times, evidenced by the amount of Roman ruins recovered in the area. Its straight-lined design dates back to the the age of the Enlightenment (18th Century), when it became the port of departure for the region’s vegetable produce, mining operations and esparto products. In addition to its seafaring and agricultural tradition, today it is also a popular tourist destination.
The town is situated between two main bays, the bays of Levante and Poniente, dominated by the emblematic silhouette of the San Juan de las Águilas Castle. This fortress, that today operates as a museum, is open to the public. At the top, where there is also a charming restaurant, you can enjoy a stunning view of the town.
In the town centre is Plaza de España, more popularly known as la Glorieta, which is the very hub of the town. It opens, on one side, towards the port, passing by the Casino and the Cultural Centre. The two main shopping streets can be found in the other direction. The following has been said about the square in the El Viajero travel guide: Its central garden is an exotic haven. Bougainvillea trees, palm trees, century-old ficus trees, from Brazil, give the garden the appearance of a secret and shaded bubble. The façade of the town hall, in the Neo-Mudejar style, is in perfect tune with the exotic and rich vegetation. Ice-creams or crushed ice drinks can be enjoyed on the square’s street cafes, along with a glass of beer that, in a place like Águilas, is always enjoyable.
Two picturesque windmills stand out on the town’s skyline, along with the impressive architectural design of the Auditorium and, at the other end of the bay of Levante, the Pico del Aguilica, an interesting rock formation that resembles the beak of an eagle. An impressive sunset can be enjoyed from its vantage point.
Águilas is the last southerly stop on the so-called Costa Cálida, a name which refers to the 250 km of Mediterranean coast that can be found in the Region of Murcia, characterised by its warm climate and sunny environment, with very little rainfall, where it is possible to enjoy the warm waters of the calm sea. In Águilas, which boasts 28 km of coast and 35 beaches, these splendid conditions are further boosted by the microclimate created thanks to its location, surrounded by a series of mountain ranges that separate it from the Guadalentín valley. There are over 3,200 hours of sunshine per year, and an average temperature of 23ºC, bringing mild winters and tropical summer evenings.
Natural parks and sea beds
Águilas is located along a unique coast line, one of the wildest and most virgin stretches of the Mediterranean. In addition to its urban beaches, a multitude of coves are dotted along the coast around the town. With a mountainous skyline of shale and limestone, populated by wild and aromatic flora, characteristic of the area due to its proximity to Africa, the region’s landscape is unique in Spain. Rocky coves give way to sandy beaches and a blue, calm and transparent sea, highly appreciated due to the wealth of its sea beds, converting it into a point of interest for scuba diving.
Thanks to these conditions, the area is an authentic natural reserve of cliffs, coves and beaches. The area of las Cuatro Calas, a group of unspoilt beaches, is a Protected Landscape and Site of Community Importance. The municipality is also home to the Cabo Cope y Puntas de Calnegre Natural Park, where the sea breaks spectacularly at the foot of a 16th century lookout tower.
Gastronomy, festivals, leisure and sports
Besides its outstanding sea beds, providing scuba diving opportunities, the town of Águilas is an excellent destination for all types of aquatic sports, such as windsurfing, light sailing and canoeing.
In recent years, the town has become a leading destination and a benchmark for triathlon events, having hosted several national competitions.
Recently, a Network of Natural Trails has also been created, which can be enjoyed by foot or by bike and which run through the area’s natural sites. A golf club can also be enjoyed, located only 15 minutes from the town centre.
To refuel after all the physical activity, the gastronomy of Águilas offers the very best of the sea and of the land. Near to the fishing port and the seafront promenade, there are several street cafes serving excellent snacks, fresh from the sea. There is a wide range of affordable restaurants in Águilas and the surrounding areas, offering rices, red shrimp, fresh fish and paella, and there is no shortage of local produce, stews and the region’s popular cold meats.
Of all of the events on offer, the Carnival, which dates back to the 19th Century, is of particular interest. This unique festival was declared of International Tourist Interest in 2005.
About the residential area
The residential area of El Hornillo is a small, well-kept bay surrounding the town's best beach. It has all the charm of a landscaped and tranquil area, away from the centr
Perfect for a morning or evening dip. To one end is Amarilla Beach (literally Amber Beach), so-called because of the unique colour of its sand, which separates from the coast when the tide comes in. In front of both of these beaches you will find a beautiful view of Isla del Fraile, a small populated island with Roman ruins and an area for dolphin watching.
The jetty of El Hornillo is an impressive steel structure, a former mineral loading jetty, juts out into the sea. It was built by the British railway company, The Great Southern of Spain Railway Company, at the end of the 19th Century. It has been declared a Site of Cultural Interest, as part of the country’s industrial heritage.
Rincón de El Casuco
To the back of the beach is the Rincón de El Casuco, a stairway with organic forms, made from thousands of mosaics that glimmer in the sunlight. It was created by hand by Juan Martínez in the late 1980s. At the foot of the stairs is a charming street cafe, perfect for a quick drink.
Services and leisure activities
The area has a shopping centre and service station, called Águilas Plaza, a department store specialised in sports and an 8-screen cinema, called Multicines El Hornillo. A few minutes away by foot, there is a hypermarket, the town Auditorium and the Sea Interpretation Centre, CIMAR-Aquarium.
About the Region
The Region of Murcia, between Andalusia and the Valencian Community, has two seas and a single coast: the Mediterranean sea and the Mar Menor.
Murcia & CartagenaMurcia is the Region's capital. An ancient city of Arab origin, founded in 831 at the centre of the Segura River Valley, its town centre has a significant baroque influence. With almost 450,000 inhabitants, it is the seventh most populated city in Spain. Unamuno called it the most fertile city in Spain and Reverte the most city-like fertile plain in Europe. This spring-like and bright city, which is perfect for enjoying a stroll or some tapas, also offers an excellent calendar of leisure and culture events. Cartagena is an ancient city. Formerly Cartago Nova, it was the most important Roman city on the peninsula and it has succeeded in conserving and showcasing its impressive historic and archaeological heritage, which can be admired at the city's different museums, the most important being the Roman Theatre, and also on its streets. The Port of Cartagena is one of the country's most important commercial ports, although it has an important military past, which dates back to the Middle Ages.
Huerta of Europe. Gastronomy and oenologyThe region is one the top producers of fruits, vegetables and flowers in Europe, with important vineyards in the towns of Jumilla, Bullas and Yecla, which produce wines with Designation of Origin and whose wineries are well worth a visit. Thanks to its excellent agricultural industry, the Region has earned the name of "huerta of Europe", and this is particularly apparent in its gastronomy, which is rich in vegetables.
The possibilities of the landscapeBesides the clear benefits of the climate, the landscape in Murcia is more varied than it might seem and there is a wide range of leisure, sports and wellness activities on offer. A good option is a relaxing visit to one of the Region's spas, such as the spa of Archena, and that of Leana, in Fortuna, among others. You might also want to change the coast for the mountains, carrying out a sports activity in the Regional Park of Sierra Espuña or in the Ricote Valley. In a more urban setting, it is worth visiting one of the Region's important musical festivals. There is something for all tastes, including the "Mar de Músicas" festival in Cartagena, the international jazz festival in San Javier and the "Cante de las Minas" international flamenco festival.
Communications and transportAt the beginning of 2019, The International Airport of the Region of Murcia was opened, located 28 km from Murcia, with several international routes to different European cities. It is connected to the road network through the motorways RM-16 and RM-17. The Airport of Alicante-Elche is located 70 km away. Besides the Road Network of the Region of Murcia and the Mediterranean Motorway (A-7), which runs from Algeciras to Barcelona, the Mediterranean Toll Motorway (AP-7) can be found just a few kilometres from Águilas town centre. This motorway runs from the coast of France to Algeciras, with stretches of toll motorway and other toll-free stretches. With regards to railroads, Águilas is connected to the city of Murcia via a commuter train. For medium to long distances, there is a line connecting Águilas with Madrid, and a high-speed line from Murcia and Cartagena to Madrid and the Valencian Community.