Alicante: Sizzling summers and shifting tourism

Alicante: Sizzling summers and shifting tourism.

Alicante: Sizzling summers and shifting tourism. Image: Studio Nut /

Summer has begun, and forecasts predict hotter weather with more frequent and intense heatwaves.

The University of Alicante’s Climatology Laboratory has expressed concern about “tropical nights,” where Mediterranean temperatures, currently around 24ºC, may rise to 28ºC.

Visitor Patterns

Against this backdrop and amid ongoing discussions on climate change, tourism in provinces like Alicante is preparing for potential shifts in visitor patterns as people seek cooler destinations.

CaixaBank Research’s recent “Tourism Sector Report” for the latter half of 2024 provides insights that offer some reassurance for Alicante province.

The report indicates that foreign tourists show varied behaviours in summer, depending on whether they are regular visitors or occasional tourists.

Alicante, popular among foreign residential tourists in Spain, benefits from high repeat visitation rates in summer, approximately one in two foreign travellers return.

Residential Ties

However, for those without residential ties, the likelihood of returning drops significantly to 14 per cent under normal conditions and even further to 12 per cent during heat waves.

The impact varies by nationality, with British tourists (a key market for Costa Blanca) showing the most sensitivity to extreme heat, with a 34% per cent drop in repeat visits during heat waves.

North American tourists also decrease significantly by 42.5 per cent under similar conditions.

INE data from 2022 indicates Alicante province housed about 76,739 British residents.

Applying CaixaBank Research’s estimates, this suggests around 5,300 British residents may opt for cooler destinations away from the mainland during the hottest summer months.

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Written by

Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, UK, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 20 years.