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Cities to visit near Murcia


In this article I'll be talking about the cities close to Murcia you can visit in a day or two, or more if you want. I'm not going to speak about the little villages or the beaches as I've already written an article about it (the beaches in Murcia). Here's the link if you want to have a look.

Alicante

Alicante is a lovely city, about 70kms from Murcia, you can visit in just one day. If you go to the beach, 2 days would be enough to see everything and take your time doing it. It also gives you time to visit the museums, even though there aren't many.

To get there, it's really easy, you can take an Alsa bus. A return ticket costs around €8. 50. There are buses every hour.

When you're there you can take a stroll along the seafront (there's a stretch to walk down which a few little souvenir shops), have a look at the port (there's a little complex there with cinemas in case it rains), visit the castle, visit the old town or take the tram to get to the less busy beaches.

To get to the top of the castle, you can take the lift or walk up yourself. The lift is in front of the beach, right at the end. It's free too. To get there you have go through a tunnel in the rocks. At the top there's an amazing view. It's best not to do it in the afternoon if it's really sunny as at the top it's even hotter and there isn't any shade.

In the Old Town, there are loads of different churches. The streets are really pretty, with stunning houses. There's also a street full of restaurants, with great food and good prices (better than along the seafront, the paella there is horrendous).

Elche

Elche is a city that's been recognised by Unesco. It's an old medieval city, as well as being home to the biggest palm tree in Europe. You can see everything in one day easily.

To get there, you can get another Alsa bus. It's slightly cheaper than the one to Alicante as it's on the way, between Alicante and Murcia.

There you can visit the old castle, the palm tree garden, see exotic plants and trees, a basilica, Arab baths, a tower, an archaeology museum, etc.

The castle dates back to the Muslim era. You can take a look around and the views are really cool. However, the opening times aren't really well suited for tourists. Basically, if you get there late morning then you won't be able to see everything as in the afternoon everything will be closed (well, it was like that when I was there anyway). The castle was renovated in the middle ages. The archaeology museum is next to it.

You can also visit the Arab Baths. They have been renovated slightly. There's a few lighting features and sound effects. It's quite small but pleasant, the museums aren't too expensive either.

The basilica is slightly newer, dating back to the 18th century.

Finally, you can (and I highly recommend you do so! ) visit 'el huerto del cura' or the Priest's Garden. I recommend getting the audio guide so you can fully appreciate it all. You'll also learn a few things about the trees through the stories and legends it tells, not just a bunch of latin names you'll forget as soon as you leave. There are some old palm trees and other exotic flowers. It's really quite beautiful! It dates back to the 19th century.

Caravaca de la Cruz

Caravaca de la Cruz is an hour away from Murcia. You've got to take a bus to get there. It's a city known for it's 'holiness'. There are a lot of religious celebrations. The most important historic landmark to visit is the sanctuary and its museum. The city itself isn't anything special, you can see it all pretty quick. A single afternoon is enough really.

Lorca

Lorca is a small city close to Murcia (an hour by bus, maybe a bit more). There isn't much to see apart from the castle. I recommend you make it a stop on the way to another city like Granada or Malaga. It's on the way.

Cartagena

Cartagena is a beautiful city. You should spend a day there. More than one if you are going to the beaches but I don't know how to get there from the city etc as I never went. I just visited the city, albeit lots of times.

It couldn't be easier to get to. Take a Lycar bus, but be careful, as their timetables on the internet aren't always right. Your best bet is to call them directly and double check the times. Cartagena is a slightly more than an hour away from Murcia.

You can visit the ruins of the Roman baths and Roman villas. Also the Roman amphitheatre (I recommend going here over the ruins). The theatre's museum is really cool. There is a part about the city's history and the conquests that happened there. When I went, I bought a pass that let me visit pretty much all the museums in the city. It set me back about 20 euros. Although, the ruins (of the Roman villas) were a bit disappointing.

I also recommend the boat trip. It's not very expensive (5 euros if I remember rightly) and lasts an hour more or less, maybe 45 minutes. It's really cool as they explain old stories and legends etc, and it doesn't go on for too long. Everything they say is interesting

You can also use the lift and go up the top of the castle. The view is amazing and is definitely worth paying for. You can also climb up yourself of course.

Apart from the museums, the buildings are stunning although a lot of them are being renovated (well at least they were when I was there a year ago, I guess now they might be done).

The only place you shouldn't go to are the restaurants in the main square (or just be careful what you ask for) as the food isn't very good. I was very disappointed with what I got when I was there.

So, I guess all that's left to say is... Have some amazing trips!



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Comments (3 comments)

  • Manu P 5 years ago

    Instead of taking the bus, you can also take the train to go to Alicante, Elche and specially to go to Lorca, the bus takes longer than the train. And about Lorca (53 min by train from Murcia), there are many things to see there, you missed a visit to the tourism office to get to know what to see..

  • Jake Entwistle 5 years ago

    I just translated this article so unfortunately I can't add anything else to it. The link the Spanish original is at the top, so maybe leave a comment on that one and the original author will be able to add some more stuff?

  • Jake Entwistle 5 years ago

    My bad, the link is at the bottom under 'content available in other languages' :)


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