(Last updated on: 20/06/2022)
There are many fantastic things to do in the Murcia region with kids. Ever since my dad moved to the Murcia area 10 years ago, my family and I have been exploring all of the cool things to do in the region. Murcia makes for the perfect short break or summer-long adventure, and there are plenty of stunning Spanish landmarks here and very close by. Whether you are looking to relax on the beach, improve your golfing skills or explore ancient ruins, the Murcia region has it all!
Most people who visit the Murcia region spend the majority of their time chilling by the pool for on the beach. While this is great (I also love beach time!), it would be a shame to miss out on the other cool things to do in the Murcia region. So, in this article I will tell you about the best things to do here with (or without) kids.
- Where is Murcia?
- Tourism in the Murcia region
- The best time to visit Murcia
- Where to stay in the Murcia region
- Things to do in the Murcia region with kids
- #1 Learn to play golf
- #2 Get muddy at Lo Pagan
- #3 Get wet at Murcia’s biggest waterpark (and see lions there too!)
- #4 Make sand castles on the beach
- #5 Go zip lining at Parque Rafael de la Cedra
- #6 Get your cultural fix in Murcia City
- #7 See the flamingos at San Pedro del Pinatar Nature Reserve
- #8 Play in the sand dunes At Playa de Calblanque
- #9 Ride horses through Ricote Valley
- #10 Visit a hidden oasis at Salto del Usero
- #11 Get your history fix in Cartagena City
- #12 Visit the Castle of Jumilla
- #13 Visit the gold mines at Parque Minero
- Things to do in the Murcia region with kids: Know before you go
Where is Murcia?
The region of Murcia is an autonomous community located in the south east of Spain in the Iberian Peninsular.
The area is easily accessed via its airport in Murcia city or from nearby major airports in Alicante or Granada. You can also access the region by sea, road or rail.
The region of Murcia covers an area of 11,313 km², so there is a big space for you to explore! The region has a population of 1.4 million, most of whom live in Murcia City. There are many holiday homes in the area, meaning that the population size increases significantly during the summer months, most notably in the coastal areas.
For those who like slow tourism or who like to keep busy during their holidays, Murcia can make for a great part of a longer trip in the area. One year we incorporated our visit to the Murcia region into a road trip through Spain and into Morocco, where we climbed Mount Toubkal– it was brilliant!
Tourism in the Murcia region
Popular for its golden sand beaches and access to the Mediterranean Sea, the region of Murcia can be easily accessed from the UK and the rest of Europe. There are many budget airlines who fly here and it takes around 2 hours 30 minutes from London.
The excellent accessibility options for tourists has meant that the region has grown in popularity in recent years. Many people purchase holiday homes here, returning year on year to enjoy the Spanish sunshine time and time again. Others buy into package holidays from their local travel agent or visit as part of a road trip through Spain.
Much of Spain is at risk of overtourism during the peak summer months. This is because many people choose to flock to the same few resorts and beach areas. This is, in my opinion, SUCH a shame- because there are so many cool things to do in the Murcia region in places that are not flooded with tourists!
Aside from its beautiful beaches, the region of Murcia is packed with culture, adventure and history. One of the things that I love about travel is the educational value that it provides (for children as well as adults!). Yes, learning how to swim and building sandcastles is lots of fun, but so is exploring ruins, riding hordes through the outback or taking a mud bath!
In this article I am going to introduce you to some of the cool things to do in the Murcia region that I have discovered and show you that there is more to do than relaxing on the beach (which is obviously important too!)….
The best time to visit Murcia
OK, before we get into the details of the things to do in the Murcia region, we should first note when is the best time to visit.
This part of Spain is great year-round. However, between November-February you will see many of the tourist areas largely closed due to the cooler temperatures.
Peak season in the Murcia region is July-August. During this time tourist areas will be extremely busy and prices will be high.
My preference (if you are not committed by school dates) would be to visit during the shoulder season, which runs from May-June and September-October. During this time temperatures are hot, but not overwhelmingly so. Prices are lower and there are fewer crowds.
Winter time is quiet and pleasant and can offer a little bit of respite from the cold British winter.
Where to stay in the Murcia region
There are many great places to stay in the region of Murcia. The three most popular areas with tourists are: La Manga, Mazarrón and Murcia City.
I would suggest that you choose a location based on the things to do in the Murcia region that interest you most. For example, if you want to spend most of your days relaxing on the beach, then you would prefer La Manga or Mazarrón over Murcia City. Whereas if cultural tourism is more up your street, then staying in the city might be your preference.
Here is a breakdown of these three main areas, with some recommendations of great places to stay.
La Manga is one of the most liveliest places to stay in the Murcia region. It is home to some of the best hotels and holidays resorts in the area.
If your family is into water sports then La Manga will not disappoint- there are sailing schools, diving opportunities and plenty of banana boats and paragliding.
La Manga is known for its stunning geological features. There are beautiful beaches and dramatic rock formations. It has a distinctive narrow set of land, stretching 24km through the Mediterranean ocean, enclosing picturesque lagoons.
Here are some of the best places to stay in La Manga:
Mazarrón offers a mix of beach life and culture. The area is famous for its minerals and metals and was occupied by many different nationalities and ethnicities over the years, all in search of the precious materials that the area had to offer. There is evidence here of occupation by the ancient Romand, Phoenicians, Muslims and Christians to name a few.
Mazarrón is a popular destination with families due to its long 35km coastline, whereby many of the best hotels and accommodation options are located. There are charming harbours, beautiful beaches and a laid-back atmosphere that many families desire.
Here are some of the best places to stay in Mazarrón:
Murcia City is the regional capital. It is full of history and culture. Many claim that the city of Murcia has the best tapas in all of Spain. And it has a wealth of museums and fascinating architecture too.
The city is a good base to explore many of the cool things to do in the Murcia region. In the city itself there are plenty of plazas, churches, the famous Murcia cathedral and an impressive bell tower. Further afield, there are many great things to do, which I will outline below…
Here are some of the best places to stay in Murcia:
Things to do in the Murcia region with kids
Lets get down to it- what are the most fun things to do in the Murcia region with kids?
There is easily enough to keep your little ones occupied for many weeks in Murcia! From action-packed adventurous days out to lazy days by the pool, there is something for everyone. Below, I have selected my 13 favourite things to do in the Murcia region that are perfect for families.
#1 Learn to play golf
Golf is a great sport for kids to learn, and parents usually enjoy it too! The Murcia region is famous for its 15 high quality golf courses, which are accessible to people of all abilities.
Your kids will have great fun learning to putt and being taught about the different types of clubs. Or for something a little bit more light-hearted, you can try crazy golf!
#2 Get muddy at Lo Pagan
What kid doesn’t love getting muddy? A visit to the mud baths at Lo Pagan is lots of fun for kids of any age (and grown ups too!).
Lo Pagan Mar Menor is a coastal area in the Murcia region. On one side you have the mud baths and on the other side the open ocean.
The idea is that you submerge yourself into the mud and then let it dry in the sun. The mud is said to have healing properties as well as being good for your skin. You then wash the mud off in the salt water.
It isn’t often that the kids will get to see their parents with mud all over their face (if ever?)! Kids absolutely love this place and it is definitely one of the most fun things to do in the Murcia region with kids!
#3 Get wet at Murcia’s biggest waterpark (and see lions there too!)
What kid doesn’t love a waterpark? Terra Natura is the only waterpark in the Murcia region and is really popular during the summer months.
But it’s not just a waterpark, it’s also a major wildlife centre! There are more than 300 species of animals to see here. Unlike the waterpark, this is open year-round. One of the most important wildlife centres in Spain, Tera Natura adopts the ‘Zooinmersión’ concept, meaning that they have recreated a habitat which gives an experience of being at one with the wildlife.
This eco-zoo is a positive example of wildlife tourism in Spain. Highlights include the bird of prey flying displays and night safari.
Terra Natura is easy to reach- it is just 20 minutes outside of Murcia city centre.
#4 Make sand castles on the beach
Beach time is one of the best things to do in the Murcia region, and fortunately, you are spoilt for choice here!
Some of the best beaches here include:
- Playa de Poniente – Águilas
- Percheles – Mazarrón
- Playa de las Palmeras
- Cala Cortina – Cartagena
- La Azohía – Cartagena
- La Carolina – Águilas
- Playa de Paraíso – Cartagena
- Las Mulas – Cartagena
- Cala de los Cocederos del Hornillo – Águilas
- Calblanque – Cartagena
#5 Go zip lining at Parque Rafael de la Cedra
This park is perfect for big kids- there are lots go things to do from getting lost in the maze to climbing the high ropes to zip lining. There are also several large swimming pools to cool down in during the hot dummer months.
The best part? It’s really cheap! For just a few Euros you can have a fun-filled family day out in the Murcia region, it doesn’t get much better than that!
#6 Get your cultural fix in Murcia City
Murcia City is a great place to visit if you want to experience cultural tourism. You can take your kids to explore the famous Santa Maria Cathedral and Plaza del Cardenal Belluga, enjoy some of the delicious tapas and climb up to the top of the bell tower.
A visit to the capital city is one of my favourite things to do in the Murcia region. Here you can get off the beaten path and experience authentic Spanish life.
#7 See the flamingos at San Pedro del Pinatar Nature Reserve
Your kids will love flamingo spotting in the Murcia region. Not far from Lo Pagan, San Pedro del Pinatar Nature Reserve is one of the most important wetland in the region.
This wetland areas is great for nature-lovers. Here you can find flamingos, albatrosses, herons and seagulls amongst other migratory birds. Go for a relaxing walk and enjoy the peace!
#8 Play in the sand dunes At Playa de Calblanque
Sand dunes are a natural playground for kids. They can run, jump, climb, roll- there are hours worth of fun!
Playa de Calblanque is a series of beautiful golden sandy beaches located within a nature reserve. These beaches are unspoilt- no sun lounges and beaches bars here! The sand is powdery and soft and the water is crystal clear. This place is the perfect place to relax amongst nature- it’s pure bliss!
#9 Ride horses through Ricote Valley
The Ricote Valley, also known as Valle de Ricote, is a beautiful and largely undiscovered part of the Murcia region. Personally, I don’t understand why more tourists don’t venture here- because it is a fantastic place to visit!
Visiting the Ricote Valley is one of my favourite things to do in the Murcia region. Here you can seer cave drawings and learn about ancient Iberian settlements as well as Roman ruins.
The area itself is stunning. There are quaint towns and villages and each year during the Floracion de Cieza you can see the peach trees bloom, which is a beautiful sight!
For the adventurous families, there are lots of opportunities for a fun day out here too, including horse riding, hiking, mountain biking and river rafting.
#10 Visit a hidden oasis at Salto del Usero
Another place that isn’t well known to most tourists is the oasis at Salta del Usero. This site of geological interest is located close to the town of Bullas and can be easily reached by car and foot.
This really is a hidden wonder that your kids will love! There is a waterfall, rock pools filled with fish and an inland beach. It is generally pretty quiet apart from June 23rd when there is a big celebration here- it’s a 225 year old tradition that recreates the legend of a princess who jumped in the river after being stood up by her lover.
#11 Get your history fix in Cartagena City
If ancient ruins are your thing, then a visit to Caragena should definitely be on your Murcia itinerary.
Cartagena is a picturesque port city rich in history and culture. It has previously been inhabited by Romans and Arabs, and there is evidence of this all around.
Most people who come to Cartagena head straight to the Roman amphitheatre. This was discovered in 1988 and has since become a popular tourist attraction in the area.
#12 Visit the Castle of Jumilla
Visiting a castle is always a great activity to do with the kids. It’s fun and it’s educational, win-win!
Visiting the Castle of Jumilla is one of the best things to do in the Murcia region with kids. Built in 1461, this castle has been renovated back to its original state. You can explore the different areas of the cast, including the dungeons. The building itself is pretty impressive and the castle has a long and interesting history too.
The castle is an hours drive north of Murcia City and it costs just 1 Euro to enter.
#13 Visit the gold mines at Parque Minero
Another tourist attraction that is great for kids is Parque Minero.
This is home to the ancient Roman gold mines. They offer regular tours, which are absolutely fascinating. One of the highlights of the tours is seeing the orange underground lake, which is unique to this mine. There is also a miniature train, which is popular with smaller kids.
Parque Minero is just 20 minutes from Cartagena. Tours can fill up quickly so it is recommended that you book in advance.
Things to do in the Murcia region with kids: Know before you go
There are so many cool things to do in the Murcia region with kids and I hope that I have given you some holiday inspiration in this article. If you already follow me on this website or on Instagram, you will know that I am a big advocate of learning about the place that you are visiting before you go. Whether this is learning about the best things to do, how to travel sustainably or getting to know about the local culture, knowing a bit more about the destination that you are travelling to before you leave home is always worthwhile.
If you are planning a trip to the Murcia region, I recommend the following:
- Travel Like a Local – Map of Murcia: The Most Essential Murcia (Spain) Travel Map for Every Adventure
- Going Native In Murcia 4th Edition: All You Need To Know About Visiting, Living and Home Buying in Murcia and Spain’s Costa Calida
- A Handbook for Travellers in Spain: Andalucia, Ronda and Granada, Murcia, Valencia, and Catalonia; the Portions Best Suited for the Invalid
- Lonely Planet Spain (Travel Guide)
*This post was written in collaboration with Traverse and the Murcia tourism board.