San Miguel de Cabo de Gata
San Miguel de Cabo de Gata is the full name of a small fishing village located 10km to the north of the important Cape (Cabo de Gata) on the Spanish Mediterranean coast. Although there are only a few houses, a small general store and a few beach bars here, its a good place to stock up on refreshments. The hamlet is withing the municipal district of Nijar.
The cape features a rocky coastline with a few inlets and very little sign of human development. It gives it name to the large Natural Park Cabo de Gata - Nijar.
Cabo de Gata village, Cabo de Gata cape and Cabo de Gata lighthouse can be visited by car taking the AL-3115 off the A-344 north of Almeria city at Retamar near the Almeria Airport. The A-3115 passes the small hamlet/village of Cabo de Gata, then passed the salt lagoons, then Iglesia de las Salinas the abandoned church with eerie restored tower. The road continues along the rocky coast to the lighthouse. Information boards advise visitors about the location and the wildlife. There is a small car park and photo oportunities. The unmanned lighthouse is not open to the public. there is a viewpoint looking over the interesting coastal rock forms of the Arrecife de las Sirenas (Mermaids Reef). Driving Route Description
At Cala de Coralette there are a few houses, car parking and a beach.
The ALP-822 road continues a few kilometer further east past some small rocky coves to the barrier where you must continue on foot or bicycle. The path cuts inland to traverse a couple of steep ravines. Small paths lead down to a number of interesting coves and beaches. After 3km you reach civilisaton and the Car park for the better known Playa Monsul, further on is Playa Genoveses before continuing to the delights of the popular village of San José.
If you are suitably equipped and organised this would be the excellent walk that most tourist miss out for the logistics. Draw straws for one of the party to drive round to Playa Monsul car park to meet you on arrival.
Torreón de San Miguel
The Torreón de San Miguel also known as or Torreón de Cabo de Gata is an 18th-century military watchtower. It is currently abandoned and awaiting a restoration project.
The construction of the structure was begun on 29 March 1756 by order of King Fernando VI to protect the town of La Almadraba de Monteleva and its salt flats. The design was carried out by the architect Tomás Warluzel d'Hostel.
The central tower has two floors plus the roof. The second floor is accessed by stairs with a bridge, rather than the simple rope ladder as most of the defensive towers along the Andalucia coast. According to soldier Antonio María de Bucareli, in 1762 the tower was garrisoned with two keepers, an infantry corporal, four soldiers and an artilleryman who controlled two cannons.
After the Peninsular War (War of Independence), the tower was abandoned, leaving the cannons in the sand. It possibly had some use during the Spanish Civil War. After the defunction of the ‘Cuerpo de Carabineros’ in 1941 it became the headquarters of the Civil Guard. In the 1980s the outer wall with turrets on the corners was built. It was finally abandoned in 2000.