DEHESA DE CAMPOAMOR'S Barranco Rubio beach is something of an enigma. There's no doubting that the beach is a jewel in the Orihuela Costa crown, a coastal sliver of white sand that stretches almost as far as the eye can see.
In fact, with a total length measuring 655m Barranco Rubio is the longest beach on the entire Orihuela Costa, but it´s not the largest. That accolade goes to neighbouring Playa de la Glea, and sometimes it feels like Barranco Rubio lives in its sister's shadow.
Playa de la Glea seems to be universally loved by those who visit her idyllic shores, whereas Barranco Rubio attracts mixed and contrasting reviews – people either admire or dislike the beach in equal measure.
You'll need to look no further than the beach's reviews on TripAdvisor to appreciate the Marmite effect in action. Many reviewers praise the beach for its beautiful sands, its clean safe waters, and its suitability as a prestigious family holiday destination.
Whilst others cite the overbearing rocky cliffs that leave the beach in an undesirable perpetual shadow each afternoon, and overdevelopment of the coastline, with apartment blocks casting their shadows over the sands below at any time past midday.
Barranco Rubio, the longest beach in Orihuela Costa
Additionally, some comments blame the location and the shape of the beach for the unsightly build-up of seaweed during the height of the summer. It would seem that, just like the venerable British savoury spread, some people really do either love it or hate it.
The beach takes its name from the gully that brings rainwater from inland areas to the sea. Translated as “Blond ravine”, the terminology might be considered unbefitting considering the vibrant red colouration of the ancient rock that dominates the coastline.
At the south end of the beach, the headland reaches the water's edge concealing part of the beach, and at certain times of the day, the tide makes walking to neighbouring Mil Palmeras beach impossible without wading through knee-deep water.
Like all Orihuela Costa beaches, Barranco Rubio receives the Blue Flag award year after year assuring the quality of the beach, with 30.785 m2 of fine white sands and crystal clear Mediterranean bathing waters.
Barranco Rubio has a lifeguard service during the summer season and the beach is well served by bars and restaurants, including a chiringuito beach bar on the beach itself that provides refreshments and full bar service.
First-class services on and off the beach
The Delpuerto Restaurant at the northernmost end of the beach offers some outstanding Spanish dishes and an extensive tapas menu, with an elevated terrace that offers spectacular views of the beach and sea.
Special mentions should go to Fish Bowl Restaurant and Restaurante Los Ángeles. Visitors can find Fish Bowl just a short walk from the beach adjacent to the Campoamor Marina.
Restaurante Los Ángeles is located in Club Náutico Campoamor and boasts spectacular views across the sea and the marina. Both venues offer exquisitely prepared fresh food and beautifully appointed dining rooms suitable for special occasions and formal dining.
Accessibility to Playa Barranco Rubio is good, with gentle slopes toward the fine sand permitting access by wheelchair users and families with push-chairs and younger children.
However, parking can be problematic particularly in the summer months, with parking prohibited by yellow lines on many of the smaller roads closest to the beach. Calle Concha Espina and the neighbouring residential roads offer limited on-street parking, with access to the southern end of the beach via a slope with steps.
Despite its critics, Barranco Rubio beach has plenty of benefits to attract visitors and it is undoubtedly among the finest beaches the local South Costa Blanca area has to offer. But don't take our word for it, take a day out of your summer holiday this year and go see for yourself.
Looking for holiday ideas and travel inspiration? Find out more about our favourite recommended things to do on the Orihuela Costa or join the La Zenia community Facebook group and find out what's going on in the local area.
Photo credit: Piotr Piosik / LaZenia.com