The Costa de la Luz, the ‘Coast of Light’: even the name is evocative. This southernmost of Spain’s costas is often overlooked for its easterly neighbour, the Costa Tropical. Nonetheless, this stunning region does have something quite special – and it’s well worth the closer look we’re giving it today.
Cradle of Andalusian culture
The Spanish coastline can conjure up images of a hazy skyline dominated by shimmering high-rises, the occasional parched hill in the distance. But head down to the Costa de la Luz, and you immediately feel the difference. This is an ancient land that particularly appeals to those passionate about Spanish culture. Small hill towns, gleamingly white in the southern sun, old Moorish ruins, proud cathedrals and bustling markets characterise the region, crowned by the exotic city of Seville. Influence from centuries of occupation by its neighbours to the south have left this pocket of Spain a particularly rich cultural history and heritage.
300 days of glorious sunshine give you plenty of time to sample its golden beaches. The coast does face onto the Atlantic, so it can be a little chilly, but not inordinately so. Summer water temperatures still hover around a pleasant 22°C/71°F.
And if you ever feel a yearning for a bit of home, the famous ‘Rock’ is just next door. Gibraltar is an expensive place to live, but it’s a popular day-trip destination to stock up at M&S, Morrison’s and Next on the Main Street and even Waitrose products in Eroski!
Settling into daily life in the Costa de la Luz
Gorgeous towns and sweeping beaches are all very well when you’re choosing your dream home, but how does daily life stack up? Well, you’re in luck: the Telegraph ranks Andalusia as a whole as “the best place in the world for a good life”.
Property prices here are relatively low (more on that later), which, combined with a laid-back lifestyle, really is a perfect pair. Not only that, but you’ve got fantastic travel links back home and around Spain. Jerez de la Frontera and Gibraltar have flights to some major UK airports, including Edinburgh, London Stansted and Manchester. There’s better choice, however, if you drive just over the border to Faro, where you’ve direct routes to most main airports in the UK and Ireland. Within Spain, high-speed trains are in partial service from Cadiz to Madrid and more.
Coming with children? There are fewer international schools in this region than other parts of Spain, but you can easily enrol your child in the local system. They’ll be helping you with your Spanish before you know it.
Where are the main areas to live?
With so much choice, how do you narrow it down? Here are our top areas to live in the Costa de la Luz.
- Tarifa: Wind-surfing location extraordinaire, this is a popular location for those into the active lifestyle. It is a little more expensive here: you can buy villas for around €500,000 or more.
- Sanlúcar de Barrameda: Known for its sherry and horse-races, Sanlúcar is very much an authentic Spanish town. You’ll find townhouses for around €350,000 here.
- Zahora: The name may not be pronounced as you think (it’s sah-or-ah, or thah-or-ah – the ‘h’ is silent), but it’s a small price to pay for the gorgeous sands you’ll find here. Detached homes and villas go for €350,000 here.
- Seville: We can’t not mention this quintssentially Andalusian city. The warm, honey-coloured buildings exhibit by turn grand, Baroque Spanish influences and whimsical Moorish patterns – testimony to its past. You can find flats from €180,000 right up to four figures.
If you’re as charmed by the Coast of Light as we are, make sure to search our property listings to get your home-hunt on the road.
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