Self Catering - Holiday Rental Villas


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Come and explore Andalucia (Costa de la Luz)

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Staying in family run holiday villas

Take a holiday in real Spain.
Enjoy the Culture and Heritage
as well as beautiful beaches.



Birdwatching in Andalucia

Whether on holiday or a resident of Spain there is nowhere more special for birdwatching than in Andalusia. Stay at the holiday rental villas 'Las Mariposas', 'Norfolk Joy' or 'El Delfin', Chiclana, Costa de la Luz and be in a central location for visiting many bird habitats.

One fifth of the total area has some sort of ‘protected’ status with a large variety of habitats from wetland areas to desert. The famous Coto Doñana National Park is one of the most important wetlands in Europe and is well worth a visit. You can watch egrets, herons, little bitterns, eagles, vultures and hawks. There are robins, wrens, nightingales, bee-eaters, swallows and woodcocks.

Andalucia has a Mediterranean climate, which means dry summers and mild winters. The average annual temperature is 18 degrees on the coast and 16 in mountain areas. In the Summer beware of the sun; always wear a hat to avoid sunburn or worse. Temperatures can get very hot, especially inland. Over 40 degrees is common in summer, so birdwatching is best done early in the morning or late in the evening.

Migration occurs practically everywhere, though best viewpoints are from the higher points. Many birds return much earlier after their winter because of the moderate Mediterranean climate. Peak numbers of migration happen in Spring and Autumn and Migration can be followed throughout the year. The parks are a haven for migratory birds such as geese and spoonbills. There are many birds of prey Imperial Eagles, Marsh Harriers, Griffon Vultures & Black Kites.

Spring, especially, has the advantage of featuring the arrival of summer residents and the presence of late wintering birds. Song gives an extra dimension to this time of the year and recognising birds by their song is easier. The entire inland area is green and fresh, although sometimes it can rain for a few weeks without dry breaks.

Winter has its own attractions include wintering waterfowl in the wetland areas. Many warblers from the north travel to the south of Europe for the winter, including Blackcaps. The resident ‘Raptors’ are joined by wintering species such as Merlins and sometimes Ospreys, while Hen Harriers are abundant in certain areas.

The excellent geographic position of Andalucia makes it a beautiful place for watching the birdlife.

Special Areas:

Donana National Park:

This location mostly consists of a mud-flooded terrain, big reed beds and many pools. It is a wooded area with Eucalyptus and Pines as well as Cork Oaks, which are important for many nesting birds. To the southern side of the park it leads down to a beach area.

Though mostly a mountain area covered with cork oaks, it also has a beach, which is important for arriving migratory birds, and cliffs at the western part (Barbate). Tarifa is a prime location for birds in transit and has higher numbers passing through here than the numbers of birds passing the Bosphorus in Greece.

Grazalema and the Serrania de Ronda:
A range known for its breeding Eagles. Most mountain birds can be found here.

Mouth of Guadalhorce River & Mountains behind Malaga:
This region is mostly covered by Pines. The Guadalhorce river is home to many aquatic birds, as well as permanent ponds.

A semi-desert area covered in agaves. The mountain areas inland are very dry, with some stripped of vegetation. Some of the old Cowboy westerns were filmed here in this desert region.

A Central Location

My self catering holiday villas are centrally located for visiting the Costa de la Luz part of Andalucia in Spain.
Booking a self-catering holiday rental villa, here in the Costa de la Luz, through , means you can please yourself and have your holiday just the way you want it, by the pool, beach side, city or countryside. Some guests like to spend much of their holiday on the beach. It doesn't get better than the Barrosa beach with all its facilities, especially for children. It is a sandy beach, not pebbles or shingle and has easy gentle sloping access to the sea. The sea is warm and clean. It is much much warmer than the Portuguese Algarve and a whole lot cleaner than the Mediterranean sea. There are several other beaches, Barbate, Cape Trafalgar, El Palmar, Conil, Roche some of which have secluded coves.

Beaches are not for everyone. This area abounds with Culture, History, Walking, Hiking, Riding, Water sports and Golf. The rental villas are centrally located for many daily trips out. The town of Jerez is 30 minutes drive. Take a tour of one of the famous Bodegas of Jerez and see how Sherry and Brandy are made. The town is rich with historic and artistic sites, one day is not enough!! Visit the Moorish Alcazar and gardens, the Clock museum, 15th century churches, the Flamenco museum etc.The performing horses of Jerez are a wonder to behold. For motor sports enthusiasts visit the famous race track. Formula 1 test their cars here and the Moto GP is normally the first one of the season. Check out their web site Jerez Circuit

The wonderful City of Cadiz, a short drive away, is a must to visit on your holiday in Andalucia, Costa de la Luz. The ancient city is approximately 3,000 years old. Cadiz is a very relaxed and easy-going city. People sit outside at the cafes all day long enjoying the cool sea breeze and warm sunshine, gazing up at the Moorish architecture. The old quarter is probably the most beautiful with the mansions of yesteryear merchants, towers, picturesque squares are awe inspiring. Visit a Roman Amphitheatre, admire the Moorish influences. Visit the grand Cathedral or the enormous Ficus trees in the parks and gardens with wild parrots. Shop in the main plaza/square, enjoy an ice cream or tapas in this beautiful area. Cadiz is so close to my holiday villas that many guests choose to spend more than one day visiting Cadiz.

Seville is known as the cultural city of Spain. It is about an hours drive. Or you can park (for free) at the local train station and for a moderate price let the train take you to the centre of Seville. Places to visit in Seville are the Cathedral and Giralda, the Tapas bars of Barrio Santa Cruz, the Alcazar, the Roman ruins of Italica at Santiponce, see the spectacular Plaza de Espana, take a river boat or horse and carriage trip. Take the children to Isla Magica Theme Park (Seville's Alton Towers) or visit one of the city's tablaos and experience a Flamenco Show.

There are some very good, cheap golf courses within easy reach of my Andalucian rental villas. Golfing is a very popular sport and many people have a golfing holiday here in the costa de la Luz Andalucia rather than the more expensive Costa del sol. Click on Useful Tourist Guide/ Golf to get more information.

For people who love nature- it is all here. The famous Donana Nature park with its pink flamingos is close by. The easiest way to explore this nature reserve from the Explorechiclana rental villas is to drive to Sanlucar de la Barrameda and catch a small foot-passenger ferry across the Guadalquivir river to the nature reserve.

Off road trails for walkers are abundant. They are the old Canadas (drover ways) which, in the past, the cattle drovers would bring their livestock to the port of Puerto de Santa Maria to provision the ships in the days of the Conquistadors. Bird watchers will see griffin vultures, storks, kestrels, buzzard, pink flamingos and many other species.