Spain Guide


Oliva Spain

Oliva is located in the Spanish region of Valencia on the Costa del Azahar at the northern edge of the Costa Blanca. This has long been a popular resort with the Spanish who either own or rent the thousands of apartments and villas which have been built in the area to accommodate the summer season "run for the sun". But Oliva is becoming increasingly popular with foreign tourists, attracted by 10 kilometres of uncrowded coastline and the excellent sports facilities here.

The town lies at the heart of Spain's orange growing region, 75 kilometres south of the provincial capital Valencia and 100 kilometres north of Alicante where the international El Altet airport has daily charter flights to and from the UK (two and a half hour's flying time).

Dominating the coastline is the Oliva Nova Golf and Country Club, set just a few metres back from the beach with its own 18 hole golf course, designed by Seve Ballesteros. The club has put Oliva on the golfing world map and golfers from the USA and all over Europe flock here to combine their favourite sport with a perfect sunshine holiday.

This area sees an average of 300 days of sunshine a year so it's small wonder that almost every outdoor sport imaginable is available here.

There's a wealth of watersports and the strong winds which tend to prevail along this stretch of coast make it a paradise for windsurfers and kiteboarders.

The beaches are definitely one of Oliva's biggest plus points beautiful, long stretches of fine, golden sand which never gets crowded even in high season. The beaches are bordered by sand dunes and strict planning controls have mercifully saved the area from the skyscraper development which has marred so many of the Spanish costas.

The town of Oliva is very Spanish in character, virtually untouched by the trappings of tourism but still an interesting place to visit if you're into history, local culture and generally sampling a taste of "the real Spain".

Don't expect shopkeepers and bar owners here to speak English (unlike the neighbouring resorts of Denia, Javea and Moraira where the main European languages are widely spoken). The most widely spoken language in Oliva is the local "Valenciano" (similar to Catalan) but all the locals also speak mainstream "Castellano" and appreciate foreigners making at least some effort to converse in Spanish.

Between the town of Oliva and the Segaria and Mustalla mountains lies Europe's biggest subterranean lake 1,000 hectares of wetland which has been designated a protected reserve where a wealth of plant and bird life flourishes.


Rice is cultivated here in huge paddy fields which, together with the abundance of water, is a magnet for storks, ducks, moorhens and many species of migratory bird.

Just 45 minutes drive south of Oliva is the totally different world of Benidorm which boasts some of Spain's biggest holiday attractions including the Terra Mitica theme park, Aqualandia water world and a wacky nightlife in which more or less anything goes!