We first visited Murcia in early 2002, the first mistake we made was going during part of the year when it had rained for a time, and this gave an elusion of a very green countryside. The areas around the rivers do remain green throughout the year, but the flow is managed to ensure the crops are kept watered.

Our first visit during the summer months was during August 2005, we drove down from Santander after the overnight ferry from Plymouth. We arrived after 12 hours on the road just after midnight; we woke later that morning to a beautiful Spanish summer day, we acclimatised ourselves to the heat that rose to the high thirties and sat and absorbed the peaceful day.Travel
As the days passed we found a scorched country side suffering drought that stretched to the Segura River in one direction and the Mediterranean Sea in the other. We had seen the laden orange trees during a winter visit and the Almond blossom of the spring, but had not been prepared for the barren summer landscape.

When you spend two days heading south for your summer holiday it takes a couple of days to recover and that is just what happened; the tiredness disappeared and the relaxation quickly took over, as a sunsets and sunrises passed my eyes I discovered a landscape of ever changing colours.

The sides of the rocky hillsides changed from light and dark browns to reds and oranges, each time I looked gave a different backdrop to the surrounding countryside

Murcia is a land of contrast, in such a small area you find green mountains with thick pine tree laden slopes, valleys full of trees laden with fruit, long sandy beaches that disappear into the distance and fantastic architecture in each town you visit.

Someone said to me many years ago that he would not waste his money in the area, but you have to stand back and take time to absorb the area.

We had one of those gut feelings on our first visit and still get a stirring as we take the drive down from Murcia airport at San Javier. It’s a feeling of arriving home.

We spent are first few visits being told about the Sierra Espuna a small mountain range to the south of Murcia city. From a distance it looked nothing special, but a drive through the park on a warm December morning changed our minds.

One mans joy is another mans hell, don’t take my word that this is a wonderful place to holiday or live. If you are interested in a Spanish holiday and want to experience the real Spain away from the tourists, find a quiet spot of Murcia and spend a couple of weeks relaxing and exploring.