Sports and Fitness
One of my favourite aspects about living in Torrevieja is the fact that the majority of its residents have not been completely brainwashed with technology, and when taking a stroll along the beach front promenade you will actually see people talking to each other and enjoying the views without being glued to their phones!! With Costa Blanca’s fantastic weather, adults and children alike enjoy a great range of outdoor pursuits and all sorts of sporting activities. The surrounding countryside provides for excellent cycling, mountain biking, hiking and rock climbing. The city’s residential areas and sports centres have many sporting options, and the miles of golden sand beaches offer a selection of beach sports and keep fit equipment.
Torrevieja’s famous Sports City has been the venue for a number of international sporting events and provides training facilities for local and visiting clubs, as well as individuals. The impressive indoor complex boasts a multi-purpose central court which can be divided into training and competition areas, a large gymnasium with the latest equipment and areas for fitness classes and martial arts, and a heated Olympic size swimming pool. There are spectator seating areas, well equipped changing rooms and a refreshments cafeteria. The surrounding racket and ball courts, athletics field and football pitches are equally well equipped and of international standard.
Within a 15 kilometre radius of the city visitors can enjoy a number of excellent 18 hole golf courses including the fabulous 5* La Finca Golf & Spa Resort. Most of the courses are of international standard and provide facilities such as driving ranges, putting practice, golf lessons, pro shop, club and buggy hire and changing rooms. For serious keep fit fanatics and those just wanting to blow away the cobwebs from the night’s partying, there are a number of gymnasiums in Torrevieja. Most provide an extensive range of equipment, free weights, aerobic and zumba classes as well as facilities such as saunas, steam rooms and juice bars.
Tennis is a favourite sport among the expat communities, and many of the residential areas and holiday apartment complexes provide free tennis courts. Alternatively courts can be found at Sports City and various other sports centres around the city. Locals tend to play more padel which is sort of a mix of tennis, racketball and squash that uses a solid or perforated paddle as opposed to a racket with strings. It is only played as a doubles game and serving is done underhanded. Again, padel courts can be found throughout the city and there is a selection of padel clubs for the more serious players to enjoy. Considered the national sport in Valencia, pelota is a seriously fast sport played throughout Spain and south America that requires high fitness levels. Likened to squash, there are many disciplines of the sport that use a variety of rackets and even the bare hand. Visitors wishing to try their hand at the game can find pelota courts at Sports City.
Also popular with expats is lawn bowls and pentanca. These provide a great way for those that are new to the city to meet people and enjoy social get togethers. Petanca seems to have a large following of northern Europeans and the simple, easily maintained courts can be found all over Torrevieja and neighbouring Orihuela Costa. All that is needed to play the game is a flat surface of hard dirt or fine gravel and your balls or ‘boules’. Lawn bowls clubs, due to their high maintenance greens and club facilities usually charge members and visitors and are not as readily available as the more simple petanca facilities.
Torrevieja’s favourable weather, abundance of cycling trails and relatively traffic free canal roads, makes it the perfect area for cycling. There is a selection of bike hire companies in the city, and due to the problematic parking during the peak summer months, hiring a bike is a great way to get around the city and explore the countryside. A number of professional road racers from the colder European countries choose the area for training, and in neighbouring Orihuela Costa large groups of riders can be seen taking advantage of the flat roads that run alongside its network of canals. Mountain bikes are a fun way to explore Torrevieja’s ‘greenway’, and nearby salt lakes and natural reserve where there is an interesting collection of flora & fauna including pink flamingos and a variety of water fowl.
The greenway that takes advantage of Torrevieja’s disused railway track has been turned into a combination of hiking, cycling and horse riding trails, and with its close proximity to the salt lakes is a favourite with walkers and ramblers. There is a small number of rambling clubs in the area that welcome visitors to join them on a variety of organised rambles, including a picturesque walk around the Torremendo lake.