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“Only Route”: Beach Bars on Both Sides of the Pond

There’s nothing like getting to the beach and finding a nearby beach bar serving some refreshments. But not just any of them will do. This list highlights a few that stood out to us, either for their beautiful sunsets, cocktails, atmosphere, location, or grub. I suggest a walk through the coast of Murcia (Spain), a trip to Cayo Largo del Sur (Cuba), a leisurely stroll through Torrelominos’ Copacabana (Spain), and an unforgettable lunch on Barú Island, Cartagena de Indias (Colombia).

Lindarena Beach, Cayo Largo del Sur (Cuba)

Cayo Largo del Sur (Cuba)

You’ll surely surrender to this paradisiacal beach on the Southern coast of Cuba. Its white sand and turquoise waters are straight out of a postcard. Well, it is here that you’ll find an amazing wooden beach shack, high up on the beach, safe from the changing tides. It is located on one of those beaches where sea turtles lay dozens of eggs every night. The magic of this place is just breathtaking… and so are its mojitos. Visiting Cuba and not having a mojito is a sin but those served at Lindarena are right down delicious, with the perfect touch of sugar, lime and spearmint. Having a drink in this little slice of heaven is one of those pleasures you’ll long keep stored in the hard drive of your summer memories.

Barú Island, Cartagena de Indias (Colombia)


This is an island turned peninsula by means of a road that joins it to the mainland. But that’s not its charm rather that it is right next to a barrier reef. Along Blanca Beach (the longest of them) you’ll find very authentic looking beach bars, the type where you don’t know whether to order or just take pictures instead. They offer ceviche, the catch of the day, rice and all type of cocktails like the Coco Loco, Mojito, Caipirinha, Sex on the beach, or simply sodas and lemonade. The bar where they serve ceviche is one of the best. I’ll confess I wasn’t a fan of ceviche until I tried theirs…

Pata Palo, La Manga del Mar Menor, Murcia (Spain)

Pata Palo, La Manga del Mar Menor (Murcia)

Let’s jump across the map to come closer to home. Its location, right in Cala del Pino, makes this beach bar very special. On the top of a hill overlooking the salty lagoon of Mar Menor, it has become a point of reference in the area. It is a quiet chill out on weekdays, where one can practice yoga, grab a bite to eat, or watch a breathtaking sunset. The atmosphere changes on weekends, with live music that make it a great spot for a moonlit dinner with drinks, Caribbean cocktails, and water pipes. The menus are actual vinyls and their selection is very reasonable in terms of their quality-price ratio. I can recommend their Pata Palo salad with goat cheese and nuts. And for dessert: a brownie.

Copacabana, Torremolinos (Spain)

Copacabana, Torremolinos

One of the peculiarities of this beach bar is that they’ve traded in their tables and chairs for beds. These are small cabana-like affairs with straw roofs that are very comfortable and fully adapted to the 21st century (they all include their own flatscreen). Beyond the comfort, this Malaguenian beach bar serves tasty Brazilian cocktails (think caipirinhas) and good fish. Everything is cooked on skewers in their wood-burning oven, and always in plain sight of their clients. Their menu also includes assorted salads, raciones, mixed platters and burgers. This is as close as one can get to Brazil’s Copacabana Beach without leaving Torremolinos.