Windy bay of Tarifa
Windy bay of Tarifa

Costa de la Luz Family Holidays & Breaks


After the Costa del Sol, also in the Andalucia region of southern Spain, the villages along the Costa de la Luz or 'Coast of Light' make you feel like you're entering a new land. The coast here is a world away from the Costa del Sol's Mediterranean resorts – the entire stretch between Algeciras and Tarifa was designated a 'potential military zone', which has prevented foreigners from buying up land and placed strict controls on Spanish developments. Hence, for 100km or so there are relatively few villa developments and only a modest number of hotels and campsites, all of them small and easy-going – perfect for low-key family holidays.


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Things to do with kids in Costa de la Luz

Go to Tarifa, a lovely Moorish town now famous now as Europe's prime windsurfing spot. The new development that has ensued has its advantages – for instance, you can now go whale- and dolphin-spotting in the Strait of Gibraltar. Tarifa beach is one of the most spectacular beaches in the Costa de la Luz, where adults and kids alike can learn to windsurf (though the wind here can challenge even experienced windsurfers – go further along if you want to sunbathe).

Visit Vejer de la Frontera, a classically white, Moorish hill-town where, until very recently, the women wore long, dark cloaks that veiled their faces. Explore its brilliant-white labyrinthine alleyways, head up to the castle and the very curious church, and relax in a local café to absorb the feeling of remote mystery.

See also our main Andalucia destination guide.


Family holidays on the Costa de la Luz are enhanced by the availability of delicious specialities such as fresh grilled sardines, sea bream, tuna, prawns, lobsters and clams, and in addition to seafood, melt-in-the-mouth acorn-fed ham from Huelva and gazpacho soup.

As a tipple, try manzanilla, a light, dry sherry (the very term 'sherry' is derived from the moorish name for nearby Jerez). Make sure you visit a chiringuitos – a beach or seafront bar (there are plenty dotted about in Isla Canela and Islantilla and Aymonte, a fishing village with great tapas bars).

When to go to Costa de la Luz

The Costa de la Luz avoids the often scorching Mediterranean heat due to Atlantic breezes cooling the air, making it ideal for family holidays. Between May and October, temperatures range from 22°C to 28°C. Also, because it's early days for Costa de la Luz as a tourist destination, you can go in summer without fear of crowds.

The winters are also very mild, with the province of Huelva famous for its winter strawberries. 


Though it's possible to splurge on five-star luxury on the Costa de la Luz, the somewhat 'undiscovered' nature of the place makes it a prime contender for good-value family holidays.

Destination stats

Flying time2.75hrs All flight times are based on flights from UK London airports, to the capital or nearest destination airport.

Carbon footprint1.37 CO2 Estimated tonnes of CO2 produced for return flights for a family of four.

TimezoneGMT +1


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