Cabo de Gata Natural Park lies along the southeastern coast of Spain and covers an area of more than 113,000 acres. This area has the lowest rainfall in Spain and all of Europe. Its average precipitation is only 4.72 to 7.09 inches per year. Wow! That’s dry! I had seen lots of beautiful images online and was very interested in taking a day trip there. We decided to drive over to Agua Amarga because we had read that it was a quaint fishing village with a beach that was visited by mainly Spanish, and so was not commercialized. That was just what we were looking for!
We packed a picnic lunch of bread, tuna pasta salad, chips, and some kiwis. The tuna salad was from the Mercadona and was great for taking with us on these day trips because we wouldn’t need to keep it cold, but could pop it open when we needed a bite to eat.
All we needed to bring along was a knife to slice the kiwis, and a spoon to scoop them out. If you haven’t discovered this simple way to eat a kiwi, you must learn pronto!
We left the house and arrived at Agua Amarga (which, by the way means “bitter water”) in less than an hour. The beach was fairly busy. This beach is the most visited in the area, but the town of Aqua Amarga has less than 500 inhabitants. We parked in the parking area just before the beach. There were a lot of really cute whitewashed houses right alongside the beach. I think many of these are rented out to tourists.
After strolling along the shore at Agua Amarga, we thought we should drive a little farther north to Playa de los Muertos. This does sound like a morbid place since the translation is “beach of the dead,” but I had read that this was a really beautiful beach and wanted to take a look. The name is due to a supposed dark and treacherous past. Stories are told that many bodies of pirates, sailors, and sea merchants were washed to the shore of this beach. Luckily that was a long, long time ago, so I figured we’d be safe!
We drove north toward Playa de los Muertos…
As it turns out, there were so many people going to Playa de los Muertos… cars lining both sides of the road… people everywhere… that we decided not to stop there. I was certain that we could find a more quiet beach, so we drove just a bit farther north. We saw a small turn in alongside the road, and decided to investigate. This, it seems, was a little beach just to the north of Playa de los Muertos where Spanish people hang out. This was just what we were looking for! We parked in a big gravel area, changed into our suits, and walked down to the shore.
What was really neat was that this beach was not a sand beach. It was made of little pebbles, so not only did you and your blanket stay nice and clean, but the water was unbelievably clear. On other beaches, the sand kicks up with each wave, making the sandy water into a suspension that looks cloudy. Not here! The water was crystal clear! It was gorgeous!
We spent the afternoon lounging around on the beach. Our picnic was perfect, and we must’ve said twenty times: “This is awesome! Can you believe how pretty this is?” This beach was a great find and we knew we would want to come back another day before heading home to the States.