A ring on the finger and sand between the toes . . .


Many couples dream of a beach wedding: walking barefoot in the sand, hand in hand into a new future together.

And now, those couples can fulfil their dreams on the Costa Cálida, Spain, after legislation was passed to make such ceremonies legal on the beaches of Santiago de la Ribera and La Manga del Mar Menor.

Previously the beaches were designated reserved for ‘necessary and convenient’ services. But the declaration of beach weddings as an item of ‘local tourist interest’, in the San Javier locale, legalises the ceremonies and is expected to add around €3m to the local economy each year.

A spokesman explained: “Those wishing to get married on the beach will be granted a temporary licence to occupy a limited area exclusively for the wedding ceremony, and will be allowed to install a floor, chairs and easily removed decorative items.”

The region is well served with accommodation options for all budgets, and enjoys year-round sunshine, meaning wedding groups can take advantage of ‘low-season’ flight costs.

British couple Darren, 39, and Marion Messenger, 36 – who now live in the Region of Murcia – thoroughly enjoyed their beach wedding, which was a year in the planning.

Marion, who was originally from Edinburgh, explained: “We looked at a number of different places but we felt the beach wedding was something different – not too formal and suited our personalities.

“We thought it was ideal as we were bringing family over from the UK, it would be very relaxed and in the sunshine. Plus there would be kids there, who could play on the beach after the ceremony. And the location just made the pictures super special memories for us.

“I’d thoroughly recommend it to any British couple considering it. We absolutely loved it – and so did all the guests, many saying it was the best wedding they’d been to. It was ideal for them but, importantly, it was exactly what we wanted.”

Access to Costa Cálida, Región de Murcia, is simple as it is served by Murcia-San Javier airport all year round, while Alicante airport is also nearby. Both airports are served by numerous airlines flying from a wide variety of UK and Irish airports with return flights costing from just £52.

For further information on weddings on the Costa Cálida, visit www.colladosbeach.com or www.areaeventos.es.

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