Visiting Cantabria is always a real pleasure; nature, history, culture and traditions merge in its green landscapes, its well-kept villages and its unmistakable coastline. A coastline that hides real natural treasures, such as the Lighthouse of the Horse, a place where nature and man came together to create a corner of singular beauty. Another of these jewels is to be found not far from Santander, specifically along the coastline of the towns of Soto de la Marina and Liencres, among others, and we can discover it thanks to the route along the Costa Quebrada and its most beautiful beaches.
Sharp cliffs, beaches of fine golden sand, coquettish and solitary coves, undoubtedly a geological set of great beauty and incalculable natural value that we can find in the Coast Quebrada of Cantabria. The tireless work of nature over thousands of years has created a landscape made up of cliffs, arches, islets, inlets, beaches, tombolos, dunes, coastal arrows and estuaries, a veritable encyclopaedia dedicated to the formation of our planet. A leisurely stroll along the coastline visiting every corner, each one more beautiful than the next, enjoying the best beaches of the Coast Quebrada or sitting at the foot of the dunes to contemplate the sea, are just some of the many activities you can do in this area of the coast of Cantabria. The Liencres Dunes Nature Reserve and the Pas Estuary are two unbeatable companions for the Coast Quebrada that add to the value of the natural heritage of this region. An area of Cantabria that we are going to discover through this Route along the Quebrada Coast and its most beautiful beaches.
A good starting point for this route through the most beautiful beaches of the Coast Quebrada of Cantabria is San Juan de la Canal, which belongs to a residential area in the town of Soto de la Marina. It is one of the most urbanised beaches of all those we will visit, but it has lost none of its special charm. It also has other advantages, such as the large parking area available, which allows us to use it as a starting point if our intention is to follow the route on foot, following the paths along the cliffs of the coastline. These paths allow us to go into the cliffs that border this beautiful beach and thus contemplate a different perspective of it. It also has a lifeguard service in summer, something that some of the other beaches and coves on the route do not have. In short, it is an ideal beach, especially if you come with children.
One of the most curious beaches to visit on the Coast Quebrada is undoubtedly Covachos. Its peculiar access, via a staircase carved into the rock of the cliff, together with the islet of Castro de Covachos and the geological morphology of the area give it its special uniqueness. Getting down to the fine sand of Covachos beach is no easy task, but the effort is well worth it, as long as the tide allows it. If we are lucky enough, we cannot miss the chance to cross the tongue of sand that joins it to the islet of Castro de Covachos. This beach does not have a particularly large parking area either, so if you come with your vehicle it is best to take advantage of the car parks at the nearby Arnía beach and follow the entertaining path that separates them.
Perhaps the Arnía beach is the most spectacular of all, geologically speaking, at least to the eyes of a neophyte in the matter. And so it must be, since one of its rock formations has become a symbol of the Coast Quebrada. Contemplating this beach, or rather the environment that surrounds it, takes us back thousands of years in time. Its folds remind us of those seen on coasts such as Zumaia in the Basque Country and its Flysch Route. Urros de Liencres, as the rock formations that mark out this beach are called, leave us speechless and more than compensate for the limited amount of sand it offers to bathers. In addition, the paths that lead to and from the beach offer us a different panoramic view at every step, thanks to their imposing itinerary, almost hanging from the vertical cliff, undoubtedly another attraction that we should not fail to enjoy, even if we reach it by car.
One of the easiest beaches to reach on the whole route along the Coast Quebrada and its most beautiful beaches, as long as you do it by car. In fact, you could almost drive your car onto the beach itself, as the access road ends at the beach without giving you too much space for parking. The beach itself, in comparison with the giants we have just visited, has nothing to disappoint us, the inlet where it is located and the cliffs that surround it form a simply spectacular landscape. A landscape that can almost be better appreciated if we climb the cliffs that flank it on both sides. I am sure that those who are following the Coast Quebrada path will be ahead of us.
In the same cove as the previous beach of Portio, but on the opposite side, awaits us the small and charming beach of Cerrias. This little wonder can of course be reached on foot along the coastal path, by bicycle following the cycle path that runs along it, or by car. In the latter case it is not a bad idea to take as a base camp for this and the next visits to the beaches of the Coast Quebrada the nearby and spacious car park of Playa de Somocuevas. From this whimsical corner of the Cerrias beach coastline we can enjoy in all its splendour the imposing flysch that forms the beach we visited earlier. The large urbanisation that surrounds Cerrias may make us think that it has lost much of its essence, but nothing could be further from the truth. Once there, it gives us the impression of being on one of those virgin beaches that we see on television.
At this stage of the route through the best beaches of Coast Quebrada there is something that warns us of how crowded the beach we are going to see can be, and it is none other than the size of the car park it has. Somocuevas is one of those beaches that has its own charm. The staircase that descends to its golden sand, the cliffs that surround it and protect it from the wind and waves, or its fine golden sand, make it unique. This beach is actually two, one on each side of the cliff, although it is really the wider sandy area that has the largest number of bathers, especially nudists, because although in practically all the beaches of the Coast Quebrada we can practise nudism or meet people who practise it, Somocuevas beach is their favourite. Of course, nobody is going to call our attention if we want to enjoy the turquoise blue waters of this beach without practising nudism.
Nowadays I would not dare to say that one of the beaches of the Coast Quebrada is the great unknown, but if I have to choose one, it is undoubtedly the beach of El Madero. To reach this small and curious beach, whose sands are covered by the high tide, it is best to follow the winding path that leaves from the nearby beach of Somocuevas. Not many bathers enjoy its waters, but it is one of the beaches you must see if you visit this part of Cantabria. It preserves its wild character practically intact, a character that we can contemplate without the need to go down to the sand itself, simply by sitting at the top of its headland to contemplate the spectacle that nature has created here.
The route along the Coast Quebrada and its most beautiful beaches takes us to the very heart of the Liencres Dunes Natural Park, specifically at the foot of the area known as Los Pinares. The last two beaches to be included in this itinerary await us here and mark a radical change of scenery. The large car park we have available on this beach, which it shares with its neighbour, Valdearenas beach, makes it clear how crowded they tend to be, making it almost impossible to park in the middle of summer. Canallave still shows us the typical cliffs and folds to which this area is accustomed, although we are beginning to notice a greater amplitude and a more open terrain to the Cantabrian Sea. An ideal beach to spend the day with the usual tourist beach services.
The radical change in the landscape is clearly defined in this kilometre-long beach of golden sands. The cliffs, coves and charming corners have given way to fine sand dunes, the coastline exposed to the mercy of the wind and waves of the Cantabrian Sea and the sensation of being on one of those paradisiacal beaches of other latitudes without having left Cantabria. It is undoubtedly a beach that is different and beautiful in equal parts, which after having visited the others makes us think that we have even changed country. Even the bathing here has its own special touch, due in part to the currents and the waves that usually lash it. An unbeatable point and followed in our visit to this land and the places to see in the Coast Quebrada.
Map of the route
This map is a sketch made as an example of the route, in no case represents the best or the only itinerary to follow. Its development has not taken into account the current rules of circulation or the state of the places through which it passes and that could affect its layout.
¿Did you know that...
The Coast Quebrada is currently in the process of being included in the Natural Park of the Liencres Dunes, thus providing it with the protection that this natural site deserves.
Don't miss out...
The Abra del Pas viewpoint is located on the road from Liencres to Mogro. From here you can enjoy an unbeatable panoramic view of the Pas Estuary.
Distance of the route
10 Km If we follow the coastal path. (One way)
Duration of the route
Time of year
All year round
Landscape. This route shows us a large part of the Coast Quebrada of Cantabria.
From the commitment of SENDITUR with Nature and the respect to the balance of the environment, SENDITUR urges you to travel in a responsible way, with low environmental impact and respecting at all times the Natural, Cultural and Social environment wherever you go.
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Route information updated on 21-07-2020. The route may vary greatly depending on the time of year, weather conditions and terrain, as well as the actions of third parties and the evolution suffered in the natural environment where it is located. All opinions, advice and/or assessments made by SENDITUR in their descriptions are for guidance only and are subject to and/or refer to the specific conditions of the specific day of the route, referring to that specific day, taken from trained people, with the appropriate experience and with a high level of physical and technical preparation as a reference, as well as correctly equipped.
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