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Authentic Andalucia

 

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Introduction to Andalucia

Andalucia is reputed to be the birthplace of Spain's most characteristic customs - flamenco and bullfighting. It is the southern-most region of Spain, the second-largest in terms of area and the largest in terms of population. The Mediterranean section receives more visitors than any other part of mainland Spain. This cannot be said for the relatively unknown Western coast of Andalucia, which has much to be explored by the foreign tourist. Atlantic Andalucia is one of Europe's best-kept holiday secrets, surprising given the undeniable beauty of the area, the miles of unspoilt clean beaches and the diverse range of activities supported.

Historical Huelva Province

The defining features of Huelva, the most western province in Andalucia, are the long Atlantic coastline with it's miles of often uncrowded, beaches and the authentic Spanish lifestyle. It is now beginning to benefit from carefully controlled modern development designed to improve the facilities without destroying the unique character. Huelva forms part of the evocatively named Costa de la Luz (Coast of Light) that continues into Cadiz province. It is also the region where most traces have been left of the centuries of the Moorish occupation of Spain, though its history is far longer and richer than that. This coastline is steeped in maritime history; most famously, it is where Christopher Columbus found his crew and ships and set sail for the New World.

Andalucia, Wildlife Haven

The area offers much for the 'ecotourist' as it is surrounded by protected areas and nature reserves teeming with wildlife. Here you will find one of Europe's most important wetland areas, the internationally known Parque Nacional de Doñana, home to an incredible multitude of wildlife in its sand dunes, marshes, pine woods, salt flats and freshwater lagoons. Here is one of Europe's last remaining habitats for the endangered lynx and the rare Spanish Imperial Eagle. The best time to visit is in winter and spring when the park is full of wildfowl. At the western end of the province lie the 'Marismas del Guadiana', the marshes of the Guadiana estuary, which are rich in bird life, including herons, storks and flamingos.

it's miles of often uncrowded, beaches and the authentic Spanish lifestyle

Andalucian Cuisine

The area is an epicurean delight, famous for it's 'jamon' and seafood, including the famous gambas blancas (white prawns) of Huelva itself. All of the towns and villages on the coast, from Huelva in the east to Ayamonte in the west, have their own distinctive local cuisine, which can be sampled in a wealth of delightful bars and restaurants - where do you think the Tapas bar was invented? After sampling all this wonderful food you'll need some gentle exercise to revive your appetite for later; the previously mentioned wildlife reserves offer a pleasant walk. Or you can delve into the history of the area, a rich tapestry of Roman and Moorish influences.

Water Sports

Western Huelva province is distinguished by it's long Atlantic coastline with miles of unspoilt, and often uncrowded, beaches of golden sand. This forms part of the evocatively named Costa de la Luz (Coast of Light) that continues into Cadiz province, and is a magnet for water sports enthusiasts of all kinds. The highly prized beaches provide an ideal sheltered location for people learning to kitesurf and windsurf - but with the dependable afternoon Atlantic winds they are also regularly used by expert kitesurfers for instruction, and for their own enjoyment. The area also boasts a number of 'Blue Flag' marinas, which cater for expert mariners with boats available for hire, as well as the novice who will be able to take lessons from one of the sailing schools located here.

Golf & Bowls

If your sporting tastes are more land-based, there is still plenty for you to do. Boasting a number of fine golf courses – the Islantilla course has been voted one of the 100 top courses in Europe, and has been graced by the PGA Spanish Open. It makes a spectacular destination for both the experienced and the novice golfer. Most of the courses have their own golf pro on site, to help you make the best of your stay. In addition to the golf, the area also boasts a number of top quality bowls venues. On the border with Portugal, it offers the opportunity for a golf or bowls group looking to tour clubs away from the well-trodden circuit of the Costa del Sol.

 

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