The island of Tabarca is the only inhabited island of the Valencian Community and is opposite the city of Alicante, eleven nautical miles and near the Cape of Santa Pola. It is a small archipelago, composed, apart from Tabarca, by the islets La Cantera, La Galera and La Nao. It has an approximate length of 1,800 meters and a maximum width of about 400 meters.
It was Planesia for the Greeks, Planaria in ancient Rome, the Flat Island in which the Berber pirates hid their ships before launching their attacks on the coastal towns, which explains the presence in the province of so many sighting towers.
Its inhabitants are descendants of Genoese kidnapped by the Turks, who were freed and installed there in the eighteenth century by King Carlos III.
The island of Tabarca was occupied by the Berber pirates for centuries and today it is occupied by tourists during the central hours of the day. The first Marine Reserve declared in Spain is full of caves that recall numerous stories of the heroic times of the island.
Pirates, caves and marine treasures.
TABARCA, with its transparent waters, its marine bottoms and its abundant fauna and flora, were determining at the time of declaring it Marine Reserve in 1986.
The subtropical character of the waters constantly invites the swimmer and offers the diver the panorama of abundant schools of fish, starfish and a great diversity of algae that form an incredible range of colors.
Despite the small size of the island, there is no time for boredom. A tour of the countryside allows us to complete the San José Tower and the old lighthouse, now restored to house an interesting biological laboratory that serves as the base for the Marine Reserve.
If the heat tightens, it is worth going down to take a bath at one of the many cobbled coves that are part of the coast, ideal to enjoy the isolation. And of course, some simple diving glasses open an incomparable underwater landscape, full of different species.