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The Isla de Tabarca is the largest inhabited island in the Valencian Community and lies in the Mediterranean Sea about five nautical miles off the coast of Santa Pola, near Alicante. The largest of four islands in an archipelago which is a protected marine reserve, it is about 1.8 kilometres long and 400 metres wide at its widest point.
Used as a refuge point for Berber pirates until the 18th century, the island today has 68 permanent residents working mostly in fishing and tourism. During the summer months, the island welcomes several hundred tourists each day, who can enjoy the hospitality of several historic attractions, over 20 restaurants, and - if they wish to stay longer than a day trip - a handful of hotels and self-catering apartments.
The island contains a history museum - the Museo Neuva Tabarca, in the Almadraba Warehouse building - a church and the remnants of the fortifications and town walls and garrison from the Genoese and Spanish settlers of the 18th century. As a marine reserve, an island is also a great place for nature watching.
Travel to the island is available by ferry, with year-round trips from Alicante and summer seasonal trips from Torrevieja, Santa Pola and Benidorm.
Ferries from Torrevieja available from https://maritimastorrevieja.es/
Ferries from Alicante available from https://cruceroskontiki.com/
Ferries from Santa Pola available from https://www.islatabarca.com/ and https://tabarkeras.com/