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El Cabo de Gata Travel Guide: 44 reviews and 162 photos

Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata - Nijar.

A stark and beautiful landscape in the east of Almeria province comprises Cabo de Gata National Park. Sierra de Cabo de Gata, meets the azure waters of the Mediterranean, forming some spectacular landscapes, sheer mountains dip their toes into the warm waters, pristine sandy beaches are strung between the capes and cliffs, low white 'suger cube' houses form the few small villages. Inland the dry arid mountains (it is the driest spot in Europe), formed the settings for many of the Spaghetti Westerns of the 1960's. Although not undiscovered Cabo de Gata is enough off the beaten track to retain its quiet undisturbed atmosphere, with the exception of Easter, July and August when more beach activity is seen.

The western side of this promontory is straight and flat, with a sandy beach stretching most of its lenth, the south and east more rugged, but still have many beaches and the scenery is impressive.

My Trip

I only managed a daytrip here, but it was enough time to fall for the charms of its extreme and beautiful landscapes. A trip by car from Almerimar an hours drive to the west. I managed to cover the tip of the promontary and inland through the hills, visiting the beaches of 'Playa de Monsul', 'Playa de Genoveses' and 'Los Esculols'. The town of 'San Jose' and the village of 'El Pozo de Los Frailes'. More time would have been needed to see much more, but the impressions I got from this short trip were enought to capture my imagination. Another trip is required preferably with a stay in the area to fully explore the region, which I'm certain will hold many more surprises for me.

The beaches I visited were so beautiful, the mountains awesome and the scenery as a whole totally stunning.

Places I stopped.

El Pozo de Los Frailes - A village with quaint Aqua Molino, a donkey powered well for lifting water from the depths.

San Jose - Small town and the only place I saw any touristic development. Small white low level holiday apartments and weekend homes surrounding the older town center. Stopped here for breakfast and much needed drink.

Playa de Monsul - Scenic sandy beach, had a quick swim in the sea, the August heat was really picking up.

Playa de Genoveses - Passed this beach, it looked very good.

Los Escullos - Tiny village with hotel, hostel and camping ground. I walked the rocky coastline to the old fort, stopped at the hostel for a much needed coke and then spent an hour relaxing on the excellent beach. Another swim to cool off.

The scenery in the park was interesting, the rugged coast, the arid mountains, the dune backed sandy beaches. I was told that the beaches were very busy as it was August, but to me they seemed quiet in comparison with the normal resorts along the Costa del Sol. Little surprises waited around every corner, deserted villages used in the movies, tumbledown windmills and coastal forts. Craggy coastal rock formations.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Unbelievable scenery and beaches.
  • Cons:Avoid August heat.
  • In a nutshell:A Jewel set within the Crown of Andalucia.
  • Last visit to El Cabo de Gata: Aug 2002
  • Intro Written Sep 11, 2002
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Reviews (6)

Comments (17)

  • mollymoo0oo0's Profile Photo
    Mar 18, 2009 at 12:14 PM

    hola beach dog!! i like yr cabo de gata info, may make it back there this long weekend.. noticed you wrote about the 'aloe' plants, i have some info on them in fact, also relating to a creative project in africa, will have a look + get back in touch:) m.x

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Jan 12, 2009 at 11:06 AM

    You are right - those beaches don't look busy at all considering it is summer! I totally agree with you, this whole area is just amazing! Like you, my wife and I did not have enough time to do it justice.

  • irisbe's Profile Photo
    Jul 24, 2005 at 2:24 PM

    This looks like a great place to relax a few days!

  • binnie's Profile Photo
    Dec 14, 2004 at 5:52 AM

    I haven't yet visited here, but will do when my place is ready,

  • micas_pt's Profile Photo
    Aug 14, 2004 at 6:14 AM

    Beautiful Park to explore.

  • joernme's Profile Photo
    Jun 3, 2004 at 7:45 AM

    Hey Stace, loving Spain one just cannot avoid running into you or carmelas pages over and over again... :-) Loved CdG, too, but just like you wanted more time. Even heard about great coastal hikes there. Good tips! Saludos from Bremen!

  • nomada's Profile Photo
    Oct 27, 2003 at 5:33 AM

    Ooooh Stacey, como conoces Andalucia. Me encanta el Cabo de Gata, maravilloso, no?

  • Apr 9, 2003 at 6:22 PM

    Your Spanish travel pages offer a unique glimpse into how life was for Spaniards in the past, & how life is for them today. These pages are a present day treasure.

  • jide08's Profile Photo
    Apr 9, 2003 at 7:00 AM

    I caught a glimpse of Andalucia last December and found it really nice.

  • Geisha_Girl's Profile Photo
    Mar 24, 2003 at 1:52 PM

    Man, it sure does look like a scorcher in August there! I'm heading straight for that cliff and diving in !! ;->


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