No matter where you are staying, visitors to Torrevieja are never far from a bar. The choice of drinking and eating spots are vast, and it seems like Torrevieja has a bar on every street corner. This may be because for many Spanish people visiting a bar is part of their daily routine and wine or brandy is enjoyed at any time of the day. This is not to say that the Spanish are heavy drinkers, quite the opposite. In Spain alcohol is usually enjoyed with food and in moderation. For instance most traditional Spanish bars open as early as 7 am where patrons will come in for a light breakfast and a glass of wine or brandy before work, with many repeating this at lunch time and again in the evening but usually just having one drink at each visit. Another reason for these early opening times is the tradition of an espresso or two before work which all Spanish bars serve, unlike in most of Europe and the UK where people will get their morning coffee or tea from a coffee shop or cafe. It is not very often you will see Spanish binge drinking or drinking without having some food such as tapas, and the general health and average life span of the Spanish people are testaments of their more moderate approach to alcohol.
Tapas are a great Spanish tradition, and there are still some bars in Torrevieja that serve free tapas with your drink order, sadly with mass tourism this is a dying tradition as most bars in the tourist areas now charge for tapas. This is certainly the case in the many bars in Torrevieja’s beach area where the tapas are not very adventurous and quite pricey. For a real tapas experience, visitors should explore the town’s small streets and lanes, away from the beach area, where a visit to a few small Spanish bars will leave you with a full tummy for just the price of your drinks, which if you stick to local brands, are very reasonably priced. Unfortunately being a mostly ”hole in the wall” type of bars, there is little information available and visitors will just have to explore the town to find them.
Some of the more well-known tapas bars, where you will have to pay for your tapas, include El Meson de la Costa, which has been awarded a Certificate of Excellence and serves a choice of fantastic but quite expensive tapas and local wines. Located just a block from the sea front on Calle Ramon y Cajal 27. For a vast selection of tapas, tasty seafood and house wines and beers at reasonable prices, Tasca Nueva Bahia will not disappoint. Located on Calle Diego Hernandez 32. Lizarran is viewed by many ”tourists” as the best tapas bar in Torrevieja and has friendly staff serving a bountiful choice of tapas including some designed more for the English palate such as mini burgers and mini sausage and egg. Located in the Habaneras Shopping Centre on Pedro Lorca 11 / Plaza Isabel 11. Favoured mainly by locals, El Rastrillo is always busy and has an excellent wine list, different aged Serrano hams and good choice of traditional tapas, including tasty snails and mixed fried fish & seafood. Located on Moriones 43 near the bus station.
Aside from the vast choice of traditional Spanish and tapas bars, there is an excellent selection of British, European and Scandinavian bars in Torrevieja. British tourism in Spain is huge, and each summer sees the popular coastal and island towns and resorts packed with holidaymakers seeking fun in the sun and lively nightlife, usually involving copious amounts of beer and spirits! The modern tradition of boys/girls on tour is big business for bar owners and Spanish towns and cities such as Ibiza, Magaluf and Benidorm are filled with British bars catering for the young party crowd. Torrevieja and the nearby resorts in Orihuela Costa have more of a mixed crowd of holidaymakers and permanent residents, with the bars being more family orientated, providing entertainment such as pool & darts leagues, bingo, quiz’s, card games, raffles and the ever popular karaoke. Some of these bars are grand affairs with swimming pools, children’s play areas, tennis courts and lawn bowls.
The tourist orientated bars in Torrevieja are mainly located in and around the beach and residential areas and include favourites such as Bar Patricia that have been going for over 20 years and has built up a firm following of patrons. Owner Doug is always there with a warm welcome and provides reasonably priced food and drink as well as BBQ’s, loads of live entertainment, karaoke, line dancing, quiz nights and Spanish lessons. Located in the residential area of Toretta 111. El Berliner is a German bar with a great atmosphere and good choice of food and drink including a 3-course lunch with a bottle of wine for around 7€. Located on Calle Orihuela 5. Kennedy’s bar is run by Peter and his daughter Michelle and has recently been renovated with lovely decor and large-screen TV. Serving a wide selection of food and drinks including a kids menu and slush puppies. Located behind Murph’s bar and just a block back from Los Locos beach on Calle Dinamarca 9. Alikatz bar is extremely popular and with its location close to the beach and market, sees an ever-changing crowd. Run by owner John, the bar offers daily karaoke and late night music and dancing till 4 am. Located just off Bar Street on Calle Heraclio 6.