We talk about one of the largest sandy areas of the Principality in the town of Salinas, at the western end of the municipality of Castrillón. Three kilometers clearly divisible into two beach areas: the one of Saltworks of urban character, located in the summer village of the same name; and the beach of Espartal, which continues to the first one, keeping its wildest aspect in a spectacular dune field, with unique plant communities in Europe, which has been declared a Natural Monument.
According to the Administration, the beach of "El Espartal" would be the generic name of the entire sandy area, including Salinas beach and San Juan de Nieva beach, adjacent to the Avillés estuary. But the beach as a whole, without marking any more limits or names, is a continuum that in its urban part runs along a promenade, from the area known as La Peñona, at the westernmost point, to the beginning of the El dunes. Espartal
A long, wide and comfortable walk that covers about a mile of palya. Parallel to it we can admire luxurious villas and old farmhouses, a Nautical Club, several restaurants and bars, with its terraces, ice cream kiosks and trinkets. At the beginning of this walk we can enjoy a bucolic seascape, with sharp rocks, near the Museum of Anchors and the popular monument to Philipe Cousteau.
At low tide we discovered that the beach extension exceeds the 500.000 square meters of surface. A great sense of spaciousness, an immense shell of fine and clean sand. Its spectacular measures and the frank way of enjoying the view of the Cantabrian Sea that, among other visions, allows us to enjoy unusual sunsets, helps to understand the fact that this beach is one of the busiest of Asturian summer. It has attracted the attention of thousands of visitors since the end of the last century, when the homonymous town of Salinas was little by little desired by the national bourgeoisie. It was inaugurated then a Spa of great activity during the first half of the century, and a residential colony was created in the privileged environment of this neighbor, long and beautiful shell bordered with dunes, the perfect place to spend the summer. Thus emerged the first summer residences, landscaped single-family houses, aligned in rectilinear streets.
Nowadays Salinas retains a large part of its holiday character, partly due to the regional tourism itself, since there are many Asturians who have a house in Salinas for their second home. This tradition of summer in Salinas has been derived in new uses on the beach. It is no longer just about taking baths. Due to its size it is suitable for all kinds of team sports that can be practiced on the sand, especially soccer and volleyball.
It is also especially suitable for sailing and for windsurfing and surf. Northwest oriented, like most of the best surfer beaches of Asturias, is considered one of the best in the Principality for this practice. Salinas and el Espartal, being so long, collect all kinds of directions of sea and wind, so, depending on the conditions, surfers have a lot to choose from. At any time of year we will see people on the waves. In this beach competitions of national level take place.
Ultimately, this beach strip also has very good services: beach furniture, showers, changing rooms ... It also has a number of lifeguards, an Amphibious chair, control chairs, lifeboats, information points, daily sand cleaning or access for the disabled.
The latest investments have come to improve all this infrastructure with the expansion of recreational areas and stretches of the promenade, or the execution of a bike lane.Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com