Benidorm

About Benidorm

YOUTUBE VIDEO

SKYLINES AND AERIALS:        
   
Skylines and views        


CENTRAL BENIDORM:
       
   
City Centre (Centro)  

Old Town (Centro)

   
City Centre, Playa de Levante, Avenida de Madrid, Av. de Mediterraneo, City Hall Square
  Cala Mal Pas, Balcón del Mediterráneo Viewpoint, Placa de Sant Jaume, Church of Sant Jaume   Placa de la Creu, Plaza Santa Ana, Carrer de la Passeta, Calle Alameda
     
West Benidorm - Playa de Poniente   East Benidorm - Playa de Levante    

West part, North part, Intempo, Gran Hotel Bali, Av. de la Armada Espanola

 

Avenida de Madrid, Avenida de Mediterranoe, Levante Beach, Palm Beach Hotel

   



BENIDORM BY NIGHT:

       

 

Benidorm by night,
sunrise and sunset

 


   


OUTSKIRTS:

       
   

Outskirts of Benidorm

 

 

 

       
SPECIALS:        
   
Road Benidorm-Benidorm   The hotels    
Benidorm, Benidorm, Villajoyosa, El Campello   Gran Hotel Bali, Palm Beach Hotel    

ABOUT Benidorm:

Population: 69 000 (about 110 000 with temporary residents)
Other names: Alacant (Valencian)
Tallest building: Gran Hotel Bali (210 m, 52 floors, built 2002)
Language: Spanish, Valenciano
Founded: 1325
Province: Alicante
Autonomous community: Valencia
Area: 38.51 km²

Year visited: 2016


Benidorm is a small city situated in southeastern Spain, in a beautiful setting along the Mediterranean coast of Costa Blanca, surrounded by mountains. Despite being so small it appears to be much larger because of it's tall buildings, impressive skyline huge tourist industry and large number of hotels and residential buildings. It is Europe's biggest holilday resort, with 5 million visitors a year! Many people from the UK also move to Benidorm when they retire, so you can find Brittish bars everywhere. Of European cities only Paris and London have more hotel rooms then Benidorm.Still it is only the 5th largest city in the Alicante province. For long Benidorm was only a small fishing village. The tourist industry started to develop after the decline of the fishing industry in the 1950s. Most people come there to sun and bath, or visit some of the theme parks, like Terra Mitica or Aqualandia. So during low seasons Benidorm is quiet calm. The architecture of the highrise buildings is not so spectacular (with a few exceptions), it is typical boxy buildings, but you find a few exceptions like the new Intempo, Gran Hotel Bali, Torre Lugano and Madeira Centro. There is also a small Old Town that is more small scale with hilly lanes, small shops and lowrise buildings.

Benidorm has a really impressive skyline for a European city. It is the city with the largest concentration of skyscrapers per capita in the whole world, by locals called "Little New York" or "Beniyork"! That is because the city is quite small (only 69 000 inhabitants, 110 000 with temporary residents) but still is filled with highrises and skyscrapers 20-53 floors high, from the West to the East. The idea to build tall buildings was a political vision that started already in the 1970s, and after the mid 2000s a new generation of taller skyscrapers started to be constructed. It is a very narrow city so it doesn't stretch far Northwards, the skyline mostly stretches along the Mediterranean coastline.

Benidorm can be divided into two parts - Playa de Levante (East part) and Playa de Poniente (West part), separated with the Old Town (city center) in the middle. Levante is the most popular beach among tourists with its long beach promenade and Poniente is the most popular among locals, and more classy with it's designed curved terraces. Levante and the East part is where you the largest concentration of hotels.

The City Centre of Benidorm mostly looks like rest of the city with its tall modernist buildings, except for the small scale ld Town. The City Hall (Ayuntamiento), a futuristic boxy building that seems to be hovering above the ground, is situated at the large City Hall Square. Here you also find the postmodern park Aiguera Park that has a lot of palms and 2 amphitheaters (one small and one large).

Old is not exactly the word you might think of when Benidorm comes to mind, but there is actually an Old Town in the city centre of Benidorm, since the 1970s surrounded by modern skyscrapers.The area is much more small scale then the rest of the city with lowrise buildings, pedestrian streets, small squares, open air restaurants, but also cheap clothes stores, souvenir shops, sex shops, night clubs and bars. It is situated on a rock above the small tranquil beach Cala Mal Mas, and separates the East part of Benidorm from the West (Levante Beach and Poniente Beach ends on each side). The quartiers around Placa de Sant Jaume are hilly. This square is where you find the old church Iglesia de Sant Jaume y Santa Ana, one of the few historic buildings in Benidorm. Next to it you find Plaza Castela, Plaza Santa Ana and the beautiful and romantic viewpoint terrace, Balcón del Mediterráneo Viewpoint, that is situated right above the Mediterraean Sea and offers amazing views of the city's skyline, beaches, sea and mountains. It's architecture is very beautiful and a stairway leads down to a lower terrace, surrounded by the sea (it was very windy during our visit though). For many tourists the Old Town is the nicest and most walkable part of Benidorm, but it can be hard to find food here after 8 o'clock during low season, mostly bars are open. Carrer de la Passeta is the most popular pedestrian street for shopping divided by Placa de la Creu from Calle Alameda that is filled with open air bars and restaurants.

Isla de Benidorm (Benidorm Island) is a very small, rocky island that can be seen from the coast. Boat trips take you there, but there are not much to see and do there except for a small café and a submarine with glass bottom. We saw the island, but didn't visit it.

Avenida de Mediterraneo goes from the city centre to the East part. Avenida de Madrid is the beach promenade along Levante Beach (unfortuantely cars are allowed to drive there). Avenida de la Armada de Española is the road that goes parallel to Poniente Beach.

There are many elderly people in Benidorm, pensioners and tourists, the majority of all people we saw in hotels and on streets were at least 60 years old, a contrast to the rumour of Benidorm as a resort for drunk teenagers and a lot of nightclubs! That is because many pensioners move there from colder countries like England especially, but also Germany and Scandinavian countries. Benidorm is ony a short drive from Alicante. Alicante and Villajoyosa are just about 20km to the South, and Valencia about 2 hours to the North by train. Only a few km to the North are Altea and Calpe but the road is narrow, curvy and with high steeps, and has a lot of traffic! Sometimes you have to drive by a couple of sport bikers. Fortuantely the speed limits are low.

TRANSPORT: There are some public buses, but that's it. The best way to explore Benidorm is by foot, especially in the city centre/Old Town that has a lot of pedestrian streets, and along the beach promenades. If you want to go from the East to the West part you will probably think it's too far though. Driving can be a nightmare beacuse of lowspeed limits 20-30km/h and hard to find parking, especially during high season. We appreciated to have a car though, since the traffic was quit calm during low season, and would be too far to go everywhere.

MY EXPERIENCE:

In February 2016, we made a trip to Costa Blanca, Murcia and Valencia. Benidorm was the second city we visited. We only visited Benidorm for one day, but stayed there for 3 nights as a base for day trips. As a tourist there are not that much to se and do during low seasons, the main reason many people come there is to sun and bath. We drove around in our rental car and looked at the skyscrapers, walked in the old town day and evening and along Levante Beach. There are many bars, but it was hard to find food that was not fastfood after 8 PM since it was low season.

We stayed at two different hotels, Gran Hotel Bali (Europe's tallest hotel) and Palm Beach Hotel, both there very good value for money. You can read the views here.

We stayed in February so we didn't see many tourists, but a lot of English people, mostly older retired, who moved there. The weather was mild compared to Sweden, 15-18 degrees and mostly sunny, but the second day it was very windy and it was partly cloudy. Spain had somewhat of a cold period, there was even snow in other parts of southern Spain during our visit, so I guess we were lucky.

We also visited Alicante and other cites at Costa Blanca; Elche, Calpe, Altea, Villajoyosa.

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