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Carboneras is located in the province of Almería. At the mouth of the Alías River, on the coast of Carboneras and within the Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park, there is a series of virgin beaches. One of these is Algarrobico Beach, 3 kilometers long and which was the scene of the filming of the film "Lawrence of Arabia" (David Lean, 1962).

The town has 14.5 kilometers of beaches, with the Corral Beach and the Los Muertos Beach (considered the best beach in Spain by the digital magazine 20 minutos in 2007) being the most notable. Other beaches include the Cocones Beach, the Marinicas Beach, the Lancome Beach, and the Algarrobico Beach. From the entire Carboneras Beach, the Isla de San Andrés, a small rocky island of 1.5 hectares whose outline resembles a whale, can be seen. It has been a Natural Monument since 2003.

Historical references

The first references to Carboneras date back to the Nasrid period, when coastal fortifications were built to protect the town from frequent pirate invasions. After the conquest by the Catholic Monarchs, these fortifications were reinforced.

In 1559, Philip II granted these lands to the Marquis of Carpio, with the mandate to build the Castle of San Andrés. With it, he would defend this coast from the Moors during the Alpujarras Revolt, and he also managed to organize the population around this monument. This landscape blends in Carboneras with the vestiges of the 19th century, represented in stately buildings such as the current headquarters of the Carboneras City Hall, formerly the Casa de los Fuentes.

Castillo de San Andrés, Turismo, Carboneras, Parque Natural Cabo de Gata
Turismo, Carboneras, Parque Natural Cabo de Gata
Turismo, Carboneras, Parque Natural Cabo de Gata

Carboneras in numbers

  • In 1838, Carboneras gained its independence from Sorbas.

  • It has a surface area of 95 square kilometers and a population density of 76.5 inhabitants per square kilometer, with a population of around 8,300.

  • Its inhabitants are known as Carboneros.

  • Its geographic coordinates are 36º 60′ N, 1º 53′ W.

  • It is located at an altitude of 10 meters and 63 kilometers from the provincial capital, Almería.

  • It is famous for its fishing tradition and for having 78% of its territory within the Cabo de Gata Natural Park.

  • It has the largest desalination plant in Europe.

Points of Interest


Famous for having 78% of its territory within the Cabo de Gata Natural Park and the largest desalination plant in Europe.


Its surface area is 95 km² with a population density of 76.5 inhabitants/km², totaling around 8,300 inhabitants.


Throughout the municipality of Carboneras, you will find these neighborhoods: El Llano de Don Antonio, El Argamasón, Los Vicentes, La Cañada de Don Rodrigo, La Islica, El Cumbrero, La Cueva del Pájaro, El Cañarico, El Saltador alto, El Saltador bajo, and Gafares.


The patron saint festivals of San Antonio de Padua, around June 13, are the major celebrations in Carboneras. They include a Battle of Moors and Christians, evoking the Berber attacks on these coasts. The Moors and Christians festivals in Carboneras are held in honor of San Antonio Abad, the patron saint of Carboneras. With vibrant parades and a curious scenography during a day, depicting two days of confrontations between the conflicting sides. A total of one hundred men (fifty Moors and fifty Christians) vie for the image of the Saint and possession of the Castle of San Andrés. A simulated landing of Arab troops takes place on the "La Puntica" beach in Carboneras. On land, Christians await them, having been alerted to their arrival by a local lookout. In the early morning, soldiers assemble in the town square, in front of the San Andrés Castle, commencing the celebration with the recital of the Christian general, addressing his troops. Hidden behind the Island of San Andrés, Arab boats wait, making their appearance shortly until they reach the shore.

The event continues in the afternoon, with luck turning in favor of the defenders of San Antonio, who achieve the final triumph over the infidels.

In June, the traditional Night of San Juan takes place on the beach, with numerous bonfires and gatherings spread across the entire beach to welcome summer during the early hours of June 23. In mid-August, the Fisherman's Festival culminates with a traditional maritime procession along the coastline and a large popular sardine barbecue on August 15.

How to get there


The proximity of the municipality to the Almeria capital of 67 km. distance provides the railway, boat and plane options that the city has.
Carboneras is located 17 km from the A-7 Motorway by exit 494 of the Mediterranean Motorway section Almeria-Murcia.
To go by car or motorbike by road, we will have to go first to Murcia or Almería, depending on where we leave from, and then:

  • From Almería: Head towards Murcia on the A-7/E-15 (the Mediterranean motorway), and turn off at Km. 494 onto the N-341 which takes us directly to Carboneras.

  • From Murcia: Head towards Almería on the A-7/E-15 and turn off at Km. 494 onto the N-341 which takes us directly to Carboneras.

Another shorter option is to take the turnoff towards Garrucha, then go towards Mojacar and then take the local road to Carboneras which borders the coast and has a good surface, although it has a very winding section.


There are daily buses from Almería to Carboneras, as well as other municipalities in both provinces. Currently there are two bus companies that have routes that pass through Carboneras. ALSA operates the long-distance Madrid-Carboneras route and Frahermar operates the Almería-Carboneras route.

Turismo, Carboneras, Parque Natural Cabo de Gata
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