European Programmes Department

Version Español

About Murcia

Ayuntamiento de MurciaMurcia is the capital of the Region of Murcia, self-governing region located in the southeast of Spain, and bathed by the Mediterranean Sea.

With more than 400.000 inhabitants (this was exceeded in October 2004), it is the seventh most populated city in Spain , with a population density of around 450 inhabitants per square kilometre. Less that half the local population lives in the urban area, and the rest are unevenly spread through the 54 municipal districts, into which the municipal area is divided.

» View the map of Murcia and its districts

Murcia has an important infrastructure and a network of roads and railways that connects the city with the rest of the districts of the region and with the bordering regions. It has an airport in San Javier, and another one under construction in Corvera.


The city of Murcia is located in the valley formed by the confluence of the river Segura and its tributary Guadalentín. This locates Murcia in the geographic centre of an influential area. In its origins, the agricultural exploitation, thanks to an exhaustive regulation of its water resources, made people to settle down; firstly, the Muslims, and from XIII century, the Christians. Historically, the development of the city and also of the region of Murcia (called Reign of Murcia during many centuries) has been determined by two facts: to be a bordering territory during many centuries, and to be part of the geographical periphery, which also means, political and economic periphery. Nowadays, the socio-economic strength of the Mediterranean coast brings new chances to develop the city, due to its central position in this territory.

Murcia is bounded by the municipal districts of Santomera an Beniel, and the region of Alicante to the East; by Fuente Alamo, Torre Pacheco and San Javier to the South; by Alhama de Murcia, Librilla, Mula and Campos del Río to the West; and by Las Torres de Cotillas, Molina de Segura and Fortuna to the North. Murcia is the capital of the Region, focusing on its administration and its public services. Nowadays, Murcia has a network of roads and railways that connects the city with the rest of the districts of the region and with the bordering regions.

Approach Roads:

    Situación de Murcia respecto a Europa
  • By car: coming from Madrid and Albacete , motorway N-301. From the East, the toll motorway A-7 (Autopista del Mediterraneo) connects Alicante and Murcia. The motorway N-340 connects Murcia and Almeria. From the West, the motorway N-342 connects Murcia and Granada, Sevilla. And the motorway N-332 connects Murcia and Cartagena.
  • By plane: there are flights to the San Javier Airport and El Altet Airport, which are respectively 47 and 68 kms far away from Murcia city. Both are perfectly connected to Murcia by using the motorways. A new airport is currently under construction in the Corvera district.
  • By train: the local train service and long-distance train service, provided by RENFE, connects Murcia with other cities and towns of the region (Lorca, Totana, Alhama, Librilla, Águilas, Puerto Lumbreras, Cieza, Cartagena,.), and with other cities like Albacete, Madrid, Alicante, Valencia, Barcelona.

Territorial information

The municipality of Murcia stretches along 881'8 km2, which constitutes the 7.8% of the regional territory and it is, therefore, the 3rd biggest municipality of the region.

Geographically, several mountain ranges, Carrascoy, El Puerto, Villares, Columbares, Altaona and Escalonam, divide the municipal area into two well-defined areas: the Contryside of Murcia (Campo de Murcia) and the fertile region of Murcia (Huerta de Murcia).

In Murcia, tourists can enjoy the wonderful landscape, which makes Murcia a region of great interest and of environmental value: dry-farmed crops and irrigated crops, woods and herbaceous growing, mountain ranges with pine forest and scrubland, ravines, dry riverbeds, rivers, brackish and desert-like areas.

Thanks to the Mediterranean climate, the temperature in Murcia reaches an annual average of 18º degrees, with hot summers and mild winters, and with scant and irregular rain. The wonderful climatology turns Murcia into the place chosen by many tourists, who want to visit it, to enjoy the people, its traditions, and its gastronomy, all in all, its charm.

In contrast to the urban structure of many other municipal areas in Spain, Murcia population is not mainly set up in the city centre. Throughout the municipal area, there are many centres of population called municipal districts. Nowadays, the municipal area is divided into 54 municipal districts, excluding the two neighbourhoods into which the San Benito district is divided. Besides, the build-up area is made up of 28 neighbourhoods.

Murcia is very accessible for visitors, who can enjoy it by walking, visiting its parks, squares, gardens, bridges.It's a city full of history and traditions, and at the same time, it is a modern and dynamic city. Murcia means initiative, change, transformation.together with the respect to its origins, and its cultural and popular expression. Murcia has a varied monuments heritage and a wide cultural offer, as well as a good network of urban infrastructure and community services.

Its inhabitants

Murcia is the main centre of population of the Region of Murcia. With more than 400.000 inhabitants (this was exceeded in October 2004), it is the seventh most populated city in Spain , with a population density of around 450 inhabitants per square kilometre. Less that half the local population lives in the urban area, and the rest are unevenly spread through the 54 municipal districts, into which the municipal area is divided.

In the last years, the population of Murcia has undergone some important changes: a growth over the national average, rise of immigrants from different countries, and a fall in the rate of ageing of the population.

Murcian people are dynamic, welcoming and with an open character, which allows them to live together sharing and respecting this cultural and social diversity.


Murcia has a marked administrative and commercial character, which turns the city into a place where the main economic activity is the service sector. Therefore, its streets and avenues are full of shops (catering trade, estate agents', companies.) Murcia is orientated to offer the services required to make it a place to live and visit, full on offers and options. Other economic sectors related to industry, building, and agriculture, are also present in Murcia . Industry mainly focuses on product manufacture, and the most developed sectors are; food industry, chemical industry, transport materials, material producing and changing, and textile. Companies that work on this manufacturing sector are situated in industrial and economic zones, which have good location, infrastructure, equipment, and management, in order to fulfil the requirements of these companies.

On the other hand, fruit and vegetable production is successful due to their high quality, and the products are appreciated in the national and international market because of their careful process of production and transformation.

Murcian economy shows a progressive growth and its labour market is increasing. Thanks to our enterprising and dynamic people, many new business initiatives are emerging, and they facilitate the socioeconomic development of the municipal area and the welfare of its inhabitants.

Quality of life

If you look at the characteristics of Murcia, as a city and as the capital of the region, it is easy to prove the good quality of life of its inhabitants.

This city is not too big and it is very accessible to its citizens and visitors; in the middle of a very dynamic area and with a climate which invites you to be on the street, this lively, dynamic and modern city opens its doors to everybody.

Murcia offers many different community services, related to training and education, work integration, public health, and special attention to the different social groups that constitute it. Moreover, the city has a wide rage of leisure and cultural offers for all ages. In fact, many events, organized by public and private entities take place in Murcia. Apart from its modernity, Murcia preserves its origins, traditions and temperament; which turns Murcia into a singular place. Different groups of people and clubs celebrate Murcian culture, its past, history, life style and values. Some of these clubs are; farm clubs (peñas huertanas), folk clubs, bullfighting clubs (cuadrillas), "agrupaciones sardineras" (group of people who organize the spring festival) and brotherhoods. There are many projects are being set in motion to improve the social assistance, to adapt to new social demands and to adapt to technological innovations.

Murcia and its municipal districts

When we talk about Murcia, we do not only refer to the urban area. In order to describe Murcia completely, it is essential to mention the landscape, cultural, social and economic richness of its 54 municipal districts.

They constitute the 98.55% of the municipal territory, with more that 869.10 km2, and they have the 55.8% of the total population. Each of these districts has its own distinctive features; however, there are some common characteristics and interrelations, which allow us to classify them in groups as it follows:

Southern coast-Fertile region (Costera Sur-Huerta de Murcia)
This area gathers the most municipal districts, it takes 113.9 km2 and it is located in the eastern belt of the city. It constitutes around the 24% of the municipal population. It is made up of these districts: La Alberca , Algezares, Beniaján, Casillas, Los Dolores, Garres y Lages, Llano de Brujas, Puente Tocinos, El Puntal, Los Ramos, San Benito, San José de la Vega, Santiago y Zaraiche, Santo Ángel, Torreagüera, Cañadas de San Pedro y Zarandona. This is a fertile area, which is in the last years becoming a residential area.

Northern Belt (Cinturón Norte)
It is situated in the north and it takes 101.4 km2. 11% of the population lives in this area, and the main connection is the road to Alicante. It is made up of these districts: Alquerías, Cabezo de Torres, Cobatillas, Churra, Esparragal, El Raal, Santa Cruz, y Zeneta. It focuses on agribusiness and, it is the area towards the city is expanding.

Traditional Fertile region (Huerta Tradicional)
It is situated in the west of the capital, and it is made up of La Albatalía, Aljucer, La Arboleja, Era Alta, Guadalupe, Javalí Nuevo, Javalí Viejo, Nonduermas, La Ñora, Puebla de Soto, La Raya, Rincón de Beniscornia y Rincón de Seca. It takes 414.4 km2 and it represents the 9.5% of the total population. It is characterized by population stagnation, with the highest level of old age, compared to the other districts.

Industrial Focus (Polo Industrial)
It is located in the southeast of the capital, it takes 117.2 km2, and it represents the 8.4% of the inhabitants. It is made up of: El Palmar, San Ginés, Sangonera La Verde , Sangonera La Seca, Barqueros and Cañada Hermosa. This district stands out because of two main facts: high number of building workers and a great industrial specialization. In this area, it is located an important part of the total industries of the municipal area.

Countryside of Murcia (Campo de Murcia)
It involves the most rural areas of the municipality
(Carrascoy-La Murta, Baños y Mendigo, Corvera, Gea y Truyols, Jerónimo y Avileses y Balsicas de Arriba, Lobosillo, Los Martínez del Puerto, Sucina, Valladolises y Lo Jurado), where the intensive horticulture coexists with the traditional exploitation, like almond trees and barley. Despite its wide extension (344.7 km2), since it takes half of the municipal area, it is currently a sparsely populated area.

Things visitors cannot miss

It is difficult to enumerate and describe in detail the numerous natural and landscape spots of Murcia, as well as its artistic and cultural heritage, its diverse activities, the charm of its folk events, or many other activities of great interest for its inhabitants and also for visitors. Walking around in Murcia, we can see how history has left its mark on its streets, monuments, buildings, medieval neighbourhoods, churches, convents, baroque palaces, gardens and bridges.

The religious buildings -with a predominantly baroque style- that visitors can not miss are: the Cathedral, the Monastery of Saint Clara (el Real Monasterio de Santa Clara ), the Bishop's Palace (el Palacio Episcopal), and Saint Lorenzo, Saint Pedro, Saint Bartolomé, Saint Catalina and Saint Nicolas Churches .

The civil buildings that make the city more attractive are the Almudi Palace, the Saint Esteban Palace (this is currently the seat for the regional government), the Casino, the Romea Theatre, and the City hall.

Other sights of the city are its numerous open areas, like Floridablanca, Malecón, Pólvora and Seda gardens. The city has a wide network of museums: City Museum , Hydraulic Museum, Salzillo Museum, Sciences Museum, Ramón Galla Museum, Beaux-arts Museum, Archaeological Museum, Bullfighting museum, and different exhibition halls and galleries.

10 things you cannot miss in Murcia:

  • To walk around the fertile area/farm (Huerta) and enjoy its smells and colours.
  • To visit the cathedral.
  • To hang around the streets and have some "tapas" in the city centre.
  • Visit its numerous shops (and buy something)
  • To cross over the "Los Peligros" Bridge
  • To sit down on a terrace, weather permitting.
  • To have some snacks in Las Flores Square, or any other little street nearby.
  • To visit some municipal districts.
  • To eat something in an inn (or roadside restaurant)
  • And, if any festivals or celebrations are taking place, get integrated and enjoy them.

Murcia has a natural protected area, the El Valle and Carrascoy Natural Park that covers 16.724 hectares and posses a great natural richness. Here we can find several kinds of eagle and other diurnal and nocturnal birds of prey. Among the mammals, the stone marten, the weasel and the wild cat stand out. We can also observe reptiles like lizards, and different kinds of snakes. The vegetation of the area is characterized by pine trees, kermes oaks, thickets, palmettos, junipers, wild olive, lentiscos, tarays, and a great diversity of aromatic plants. The geomorphologic structure of the land is also of special interest, since we can find dry riverbeds, mountain ranges, shady spots, rocky places.some places you have to visit are " La Cresta del Gallo", "El Relojero" and "The Majal Blanco"

Throughout the year, there are many festivities celebrated in Murcia, which have a very popular character, and where the inhabitants as well as the visitors can get easily integrated to enjoy, since most of them are open-air celebrations. Some of them have a religious origin, for example the Nativity Scenes at Christmas, or the famous processions at Easter, in which the Fuensanta Virgin, and also very important artistic sculptures (by Salzillo) can be seen

There are other non-religious celebrations, like "Feria de Septiembre", with its traditional "huertos", stalls where you can eat or buy craftworks in different gardens, the Moros y Cristianos Feasts, The Spring Festival, with its famous "Bando de la Huerta " (special day characterized by parades around the city) and the "Entierro de la Sardina " (a parade in which a fake sardine is burnt). Also, the Carnivals of the Cabezo de Torres district are colourful, full of splendour and elegance.

The cultural scene of the region is enriched by other activities and events that take place throughout the year, like expositions, exhibitions, festivals, competitions.

When visiting the city, it is compulsory to stop at our traditional restaurants to taste the murcian gastronomy. Our dishes meet all kinds of palates. Meat, fish, vegetables, cereals and fruits are the group of ingredients of which our main typical dishes are made up: "pisto murciano" (ratatouille), "zarangollo" (vegetables sautéed with egg), filled aubergines, "perdices" (seasoned lettuce trunks), "michirones" (typical stew with broad beans), "migas" (breadcrumbs fried in garlic), "conejo al ajo cabañil" (garlic-style rabbit), meat pie, vegetable, rabbit or ribs paella, "olla gitana" and "potaje" (stews). These delights can be tasted in our restaurants, inns, bars, and in the "huertos" and "barracas", stalls located in different areas of the city in the Festivals of spring and September. Before finishing, you have to taste our typical desserts, like "paparajotes" (battered lemon tree leaves), and a delicious "café de olla" (coffee cooked in a traditional way). And of course, we cannot forget about the typical "meat pies" (sweet ones) that you can find in many cake shop.


The European Programmes Department • Edificio Agencia de Desarrollo Local· C/ Azarbe del Papel, 22 · 30007-Murcia
Tel.: +34 968 200 293 · Fax: +34 968 202 908

© Ayuntamiento de Murcia, 2001-2009. Glorieta de España. s/n - 30004 Murcia-España. Tel.: 968 358 600