The name of this town means “St Peter of the Pinewoods”, reflecting the surroundings of the area in the past. Today, San Pedro has a population of 15,200, Although this can swell to 60,000 in the summer months. Located on the dividing line of the Mar Menor, to the north, its famous mud baths in the salt flat area are said to heal skin complaints and rheumatism.
There is a nature reserve on the salt flats that is one of the prime areas of ecological importance in Murcia, serving as a resting place for migratory flamingoes on their way to Africa. This spectacular event can be witnesses each September, along with numerous other species of nesting and migratory birds.
The main attractions of San Pedro are concentrated around the beach and shore. Here you will find Lo Pagán, a lively tourist centre which has all kinds of holiday facilities, such as hotels, bars, restaurants and shops. Next to the long promenade facing the Mar Menor are extensive beaches such as La Puntica or Villananitos. This watery setting, combined with the facilities at its marina, mean you can do a great many sports, such as sailing, scuba diving or windsurfing.
In the Mar Menor, the beaches of Villananitos and La Curva (formerly known as La Puntica), offer low depth waters, like an incentive to take bath or practice any kind of water sport. La Puntica is a beach where water sports are possible, such as sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, there are even floating pitches on the water. It has a wide variety of services, such as open-air bars, showers and restaurants.
The beaches bathed by the Mediterranean are El Mojon and La Llana with 400 and 2,500 meters long respectively. El Mojon is a typical Spanish village near the Mar Menor, (the famous saltwater lagoon), and the San Pedro Nature Reserve (were you observe many species of flora and fauna).
It has clean safe beaches and a lovely promenade with walks leading to the reserve and marina near the salt lakes (there are a couple of restaurants on site to try) or in the opposite direction to the next village of Torre. It has a marina and a lovely square with a few locally run bars and restaurants.
San Pedro has a good shopping centre and a weekly street market takes place every Monday. The town enjoys an excellent location next to the Mar Menor with the airport just outside the town. Its lovely church and narrow streets make it a pleasant town to wander through. With a population of 16,700, it is a medium sized town with a number of conurbations that continue to develop.
The town has all the usual banks, supermarkets and shops, as well as a hospital.
San Javier airport is directly adjacent to the town. Murcia is a half hour drive. Torrepacheco Golf Club is less than 20 km away, Las Ramblas and Campoamor about the same.
San Pedro del Pinatar Salt Works Nature Reserve is a unique Mediterranean coastal spot. Within a relatively small space (700 Ha. -about 1.800 acres-) you can see terrain formations such as salt works, dunes, salt marshes, reed beds, large and wild sand beaches, pine trees growing in the sands and “encañizadas” (traditional fishing system in Mar Menor).
It aids the catching of the fish that swim through the small natural channels from Mediterranean Sea to the Mar Menor Sea; the fish are forced to pass through a complex labyrinth of reeds and wooden lattices.
The bird’s fauna is especially important. Flamingos are the kings of the area, because of their spectacular nature; they arrive at the Nature Reserve at the end of the summer to hibernate. There are two bird watching areas from which you can observe the flamingo’s and many other birds, such as herons, eaglets, owls, storks, storklets (himantopus , seagulls, charranes (sterna hirundo), chorlitos patinegros (charadrius alexandrinus) and avocetas (avosetta recurvirostra) among other species.
The existence of salt works in this Nature Reserve is as old as the human being’s presence. Fourteen Century documents mention them. The two windmills that remain were used to pump up the salty Mar Menor’s water to the salt ponds, they have been replaced by electrical pumps, but the windmills are still part of the landscape.
The Nature Reserve is a very fragile and delicate environmental system, therefore keep in mind to follow the established tracks and not walk on the dunes or vegetation, do not disturb the birds. Unleashed dogs, bonfires, camping, car parking (outside the established parking sites) and picnic (except in the established picnic area) are not permitted.