Cruising in Axarquia: Nautical tourism sets sail

Setting Sail: Axarquía's Cruise Network. Image: Shutterstock/ joyfull

THE Axarquía region finds itself once again in the spotlight of nautical tourism, as a network of cruise operators sets its sights on incorporating the area into a cultural tourism route. This initiative comes from the Coastal and River Cruise Network of Sustainable Nautical Destinations in Spain (RED CCF).

The RED CCF Initiative: Uniting Axarquía through Nautical Tourism

Presented on March 22 in Málaga, the report drew attendance from thirty shipowners, marinas, nautical tourism businesses, and stakeholders in the blue economy, alongside environmental consultancies and institutions.

The report’s findings will guide participants in deciding whether to join the RED CCF program, backed by Spain’s ‘Tourism Experiences’ initiative with Next Generation EU funds, with Andalucian partners including CMMA and Puerto Sotogrande.

Discovering Axarquía’s Coastal and River Cruising Experience

The envisioned route spans from Almuñécar (Granada) to San Roque (Cádiz) and Ceuta, including the Costa del Sol, welcoming sustainable coastal and river cruises linked to cultural and nautical itineraries.

A coastal or river cruise, as defined by RED CCF, offers a nautical-cultural experience combining seafaring with at least one stop for visitors to explore local cultural offerings, primarily through onshore tours featuring heritage sites, cultural landmarks, natural wonders, and gastronomic delights.

From Port to Port: Axarquía’s Coastal Heritage Explored

Nineteen towns have been evaluated for their nautical and touristic assets, including historical sites, across the Axarquía and beyond, from Almuñécar to Ceuta.

Among the sixteen ports assessed, all exceeding 8.5 out of 10 in criteria for inclusion, approximately two hundred easily accessible routes—85 per cent of them land-based—have been identified. Furthermore, the analysis pinpointed 309 heritage sites across the coastal towns, ranging from churches to archaeological marvels.

Dive Deep into Axarquía’s Nautical Heritage

Additionally, plans involve creating a virtual underwater guide, featuring four wrecks: Arroz in Torrox, Isabella in Benalmádena, Botones in Marbella, and Franceses in Ceuta, potentially enhancing diving-related cruise experiences.

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Written by

Catherine McGeer

I am an Irish writer who has been living in Spain for the past twenty years. My writing centers around the Costa Cálida. As a mother I also write about family life on the coast of Spain and every now and then I try to break down the world of Spanish politics!