I am a little concerned when I realise that Albir is close to Benidorm. I remember Benidorm as having crammed beaches, tea as mother makes it, fish and chips on every corner and towering garish apartment blocks. In the event we drive through parts of it on our airport transfers - is has calmed down considerably - but we don’t really experience its delights.
Albir is lovely. We stay on the edge of an urban seaside sprawl, but it is gentle and full of bars and restaurants mainly frequented by the Spanish Germans and Dutch. There is a lighthouse on cliffs to stroll to and pleasant views across a rocky bay. The beach is golden sand backed by a small vibrant marina and a wide esplanade. I hire a bike and cycle along it every day.
When you get to the end, past the various eating establishments you are rewarded by Altea. There is a charming old town precariously balanced on the top of a hill. This naturally involves countless flights of steep stone steps. Also picturesque churches with gorgeous domes and colourful street markets. All very authentic Spanish.
The spa at Albir isn’t bad either. I have juice for four days. And I lose weight, even though some of the offering come in very strange colours and consistencies. There’s a menu to choose from in advance, but it’s hard to know which raw vegetables are going to taste acceptable after they've been whizzed up. And I’m not sure how fair it is to supply the juice at the same time as everyone else is tucking into a heaving vegetarian buffet. There is also a full programme of yoga and other exercise classes- if you want to do them. There are plenty of sun beds.
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