Spain Mediterranean Coast Road Trip Itinerary: 7 Days Including Valencia, Alicante & More

By | Senior Writer
Last Updated: April 28, 2023
7-Day Spain Itinerary: Drive The Mediterranean Coast • Winetraveler

Spain’s claim to fame includes iconic monuments, savory cuisine and of course — some of the best wine in the world. But we can’t forget about the glittering Mediterranean Sea, a body of water that influences the country’s gastronomy, tourism and beyond.

RELATED: Discover More of Spain’s Wine Regions & Destinations

Spain Mediterranean Coast Road Trip Itinerary

The Mediterranean’s reach is expansive — you can enjoy coastal visits from destinations like Barcelona in the north and Malaga in the south (and of course from France and Italy too).

But one of the Mediterranean’s grandest stretches is along Spain’s western coast from Alicante to Valencia. Frequented by locals and tourists alike, you’ll find some of the country’s most beautiful beaches, gorgeous national parks, sprawling vineyards and quaint villages with this 7-day Spanish Mediterranean coastal road trip itinerary.

RECOMMENDED: The Best Things to Do in Seville Spain This Year

Travel Tips & Practicalities

You can fly nonstop to Madrid, Spain from many major US hubs on airlines like American, Delta, United and Iberia. Great flight deals into Madrid can be found here.

From there, it’s a short hop via train, bus or plane to Alicante. If you have a little extra time on your hands, rent a car in Madrid and drive to Alicante (about four hours). Either way, once there, you’ll need a car to maximize this itinerary. Spain has plenty of car rental options; expect familiar brands like Avis, Budget or Hertz among others. Just keep an eye out for speed cameras and read up on the rules for round-a-bouts. 

This itinerary can be done year-round but is best during the shoulder seasons like May or October. Keep in mind that winters are cold and some spots may shut down seasonally. Summer brings crowds and heat but may be ideal if you’re looking to enjoy some serious beach time.

From luxury hotels to budget hostels to comfortable home rentals and everything in between, you’ll easily find accommodation along the coast that suit your taste and budget. Just plan to book in advance if traveling during high/shoulder seasons or during holidays such as Easter week.

Spain uses the Euro, so make sure to have some of the currency on hand. While most locals speak a bit of English, brushing up on your Spanish isn’t a bad idea.

Alicante: 2 Days

(Click Here for Hotel Recommendations in Alicante)

Day 1: Tour Alicante

7 Day Spain Itinerary Starting in Alicante
The view from Santa Barbara Castle above Alicante.

You can see the highlights of Alicante’s historic city center in a day. Start with a trek up to the hilltop Santa Barbara Castle — its roots date back to the 9th century. The fortress offers stunning views of the city and azure Mediterranean waves. You can even enjoy a craft beer tasting while at Santa Barbara Castle.

Then, stroll the city’s palm-tree-lined pedestrian street, Esplanada d’Espanya, admiring the port and market stalls selling local goods. Make sure to check out the city hall and the cathedral, and if it’s too hot or rainy, there’s always the MACA art museum. For a sunny break, visit the main city beach, Playa Postiguet, or for an even longer stretch of white sand, drive 15-20 minutes to San Juan or El Campello, some of the most popular destinations for beachcombers within the province. These can be done via Bike or E-Bike ride, helping to make more of your time and get some fun activity in.

Day 2: Tabarca Island

Hop a ferry from Alicante’s main port to the nearby island of Tabarca. The ride usually takes between 45 minutes to an hour, and voilà, you’re in island paradise. Tabarca is perfect for a relaxing day enjoying the beach, for water sports like snorkeling, or exploring the island to discover landmarks like the lighthouse. You can book round-trip ferry tickets ahead of time right here.

Altea: 1 Day

(Boutique Hotels in Altea)

Day 3: Serra Gelada & Altea

Things to do in Altea Spain
Experience the magical hues of sunset in Altea, Spain, as the golden hour paints the town with warm colors, and the vibrant nightlife begins to awaken.

Altea is just a 40-minute drive from Alicante, but it feels worlds away. Reminiscent of Andalusia’s white villages, this whitewashed, hilltop hamlet practically drips Spanish charm. Wander the village, snapping photos of all the beautiful buildings and the sea in the distance. 

Before you get to Altea though, a visit to the Serra Gelada is a must. Whether it’s a quick stroll or a full-on mountain hike, you’ll get the perfect dose of nature with a stop at this small but gorgeous natural park.

Calpe: 1 Day

(Take a Look at These Beachfront Hotels in Calpe)

Day 4: El Castell de Guadalest & Calpe

It’s time to head to Calpe with a stop at the medieval village of Guadalest. The highlight is the castle, set atop a jagged rock mountain overlooking a reservoir. The white village in the valley below is the perfect spot to wander and stop for an ice cream or coffee.

Calpe is the destination where you’ll want to visit the beach. The sandy stretch of Arena-Bol has all the amenities. The many coves that sit between and around the city and the famous Penon de Ifach rock are pebbly, but gorgeous. Hikers should head to the top of the rock for stunning views of the coast. There are even some stunning waterfalls that are well-worth visiting.

Valencia: 3 Days

(Romantic Hotel Options in Valencia)

Day 1: Wine Tasting & Drive to Valencia

Things to do in Valencia Spain on a 7 day road trip
Behold the stunning coastal panorama of Valencia, Spain, where ancient history and modern vibrancy merge along the sun-kissed shores of the Mediterranean.

Head north to Valencia, stopping along the way to visit some wineries. Bodega Xalo has local wine, honey and olive oil, and the Maserof Wine Museum offers activities like candlelight grape stomping and Spanish cooking classes.

Once in Valencia, head to the Albufera Natural Park, where the freshwater lake (you can explore it via boat) overlooks the salty Mediterranean Sea. After a long drive, a walk on one of the trails will give you that added energy boost.

Book Tickets for Things to Do in Valencia in Advance

Day 2: Valencia’s City of Arts and Sciences

Apt for visitors of all ages, the buildings in Valencia’s Art and Science Park are imposing, modern structures. Although the park has a museum and planetarium, the most unique spot is the Oceanogràfic, one of the largest marine parks/aquariums in Europe. Check out all the different options and plan your day ahead of time, buying tickets online for your desired attraction(s) to avoid waiting.

Day 3: La Sierra Calderona

This natural park is just over an hour northwest of Valencia, apt for walkers, hikers or cyclists. With various castles to visit and viewpoints to discover, the options are endless. There are routes and trails for beginning walkers to avid climbers and everything in between. One of the most popular hikes is up to the Garbí Viewpoint. Parts of the route can be grueling on foot, but you can drive to the viewpoint too.

It’s time to return your rental car and head off to the Valencia train station or airport. If you have more time, you can always enjoy a few nights in Barcelona or Madrid to end your trip.

You are reading “7-Day Spain Coastal Itinerary: Road Trip Along the Mediterranean Coast” Back To Top

one week in Spain itinerary, 7 days in Spain trip, Spain coastal road trip: the best wine country road trips

If you enjoyed this guide, make sure you register to become a Winetraveler for free! You’ll get access to all of our content and interact with other Winetravelers and for travel inspiration around the world. Be sure to follow along with us on Twitter and Instagram as we continue to feature more exciting destinations.

Get Articles Like These Directly in Your Inbox!

Subscribe to Winetraveler and receive notifications when new travel guides and itineraries are published. It's free!

Leave a Comment, Ask a Question or Share a Review

Share to...