One of the top holiday destinations in Europe, Benidorm attracts over 1.5 million Brits each year. This means, even if you haven’t been, you probably know someone who can vouch that Benidorm offers much more than its reputation as a party resort.
1. A week isn’t long enough to fit everything in
That’s why people come back time and time again. Packed with bars, theme parks, museums, watersports – and not to mention the selection of beaches – one taste will leave you wanting more.
2. Benidorm attracts people from all walks of life
Families come for the beaches and theme parks, young adults love the nightlife and shopping and older couples and groups enjoy the number of amenities and ease of getting around – but everyone can appreciate the beautiful old town and backdrop of the Puig Campana mountains.
3. Treat your tastebuds
You can eat like a king at a stunning restaurant in the old town, sample the aptly named ‘tapas alley’ or just feed those hangover cravings for fried chicken at a take away joint. With an incredibly varied dining scene of over 1000 restaurants, whatever you fancy eating in Benidorm, you can.
4. It’s big enough to cope with its popularity
You might think all those visitors would make Benidorm split at the seams. While the main beach and popular spots do get crowded in high season, Benidorm is big and there’s always somewhere to find a bit of peace. The beaches alone are six kilometres long!
5. A shoppers’ paradise
Whatever your budget, Benidorm will fill your shopping bags. There’s a three-floor shopping centre and old town street full of popular European brands. You can flash your cash in designer boutiques, go to one of the three markets or find unique gifts in traditional squares. Leather goods are particularly easy to come by here.
6. Nights are what you make of them
You don’t have to go party mad in Benidorm as the range of bars and clubs is astonishing. Although El Divino and Space know how to keep you dancing to house music, softer options include beach bars, Irish pubs, tapas joints with Spanish music, rock bars, karaoke clubs and cabaret shows.
7. Packed with parks
It’s easy to get your kicks at one of Benidorm’s theme and waterparks, some of which are within walking distance. There are two waterparks including Aqualand, which has some of the world’s highest slides. Theme parks range from family focused, pirate-themed Iberia Park to Terra Mitica with high-octane rides, shows, street acrobatics and family rides. Or see the animals at Mundomar or Terra Natura.
8. Bags of beaches
Benidorm has quiet beaches too. Between bustling Levante and Poniente beaches sits the 120-metre peaceful cove of Malpas, holding the Blue Flag status since 1987. Or go beyond Levante beach to reach a set of secluded coves that form a protected area.
9. Take a stroll
L’Aiguera Park is an oasis in the middle of Benidorm – a long and lush green area that separates the old and new parts of the city. It has an outdoor auditorium regularly holding events and a fairground area for fiestas. If it gets too hot for you down at the beach, the park is a lovely place to get some shade under a tree.
10. A home from home
There’s a very apparent British slant in Benidorm, with a large chunk of its tourists coming from the UK and expats setting up home there. So you’ll fit right in but also get the benefit of delicious Spanish food whenever you want it and, of course, the amazing weather.
11. Mixing old with new
It isn’t all skyscrapers and modern architecture here. One of Benidorm’s most stunning buildings is San Jaime Church with its blue dome. Going further back in time, there are the 16th century Cavall and Morales watchtowers or you can visit the remains of an ancient Iberian settlement at the end of Poniente Beach.
12. An active break
It’s very common to see people whizzing past on Segways® or having a game of beach volleyball in Benidorm but the sporting fun doesn’t end there. You can go paintballing, play petanque, try a high rope course or take horse riding lessons in the countryside, and that’s just for starters.
13. The views are incredible
You can get stunning sea or mountain vistas from your hotel room if you’re staying in a high-rise. But, even if you’re not, one of the best places to see Benidorm is from the Canfali vantage point on the old town headland between Poniente and Levante beaches. It’s known as the ‘Balcony of the Mediterranean’.
14. Benidorm is very accessible
It has a long flat promenade making it easy to get around if you’re in a wheelchair. Mobility scooters are readily available and getting on to the beach is also no problem with accessible beach points, adapted changing rooms and amphibious chairs for bathing, with support from lifeguards.
15. It’s not like the ITV comedy Benidorm
The characters in the TV show Benidorm are very much larger-than-life and few people on a Benidorm holiday spend that much time at their hotel when there’s so much else to explore. That being said, similarities can be drawn with the different groups of people travelling to Benidorm.
16. Not your usual watersports
As well as the standard mix of jet skis and banana boats, there’s also a water playground off Levante beach with swinging bridges, diving boards and rafts. And at the end of the beach is even a cable skiing station to try water skiing without the need for a boat.
17. Stunning surroundings
As well as the mountains and blue sea, nearby Serra Gelada Natural Park provides stunning scenery and has a picturesque coastal walk from Albir lighthouse. Or you could walk west to the picturesque village of Villajoyosa with its colourful houses, in just under an hour.
18. City creatures
You don’t have to go far to see beautiful wildlife as at Parque de Elche – known as ‘Dove Park’ to Brits – you can feed white doves by the fountain and you might spot red squirrels in L’aiguera Park.
Perhaps this has given you a taste to go back to beloved Benidorm or give it a try for the first time now you know what it’s really like.