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A seaside holiday in Spain, what do you think of? Perhaps beaches filled with sun bathers and 50,000 other people, backed by a soundtrack of thumping chart hits and the smell of frying bacon.

It’s true. The Spanish Costas have been package tour territory since the 1960s when the whole concept began and plenty of places are chock-a-block with high rises and British pubs.

But with a little effort there awaits a whole load of places where you can have the beach to yourself, the lager louts replaced by wildlife and the techno replaced by birdsong.

Here are a few to get you started…

1. Cabo de Gata

Cabo de Gata nature park

Wikipedia: Martyn Thompson

Covering 45,663 hectares in the southeast of Spain, this is Andalucia’s largest protected coastal area. Here you will find some of Spain’s least crowded beaches, strung between crumbling cliffs and red and black volcanic hills. You can even walk all the way from Retamar to Agua Amarga on a sometimes nerve wracking coastal path.

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