Murcia is located in southeastern Spain, inland but not far from the coast, it tends to be calm during the holiday season when people move to the sea.
The city of Murcia was founded in 831 by Abd-Al-Rahmann II, in the center of the Segura river valley in south-eastern Spain. Murcia remained under Arab rule until 1296 when the city and the surrounding area were transferred to the Kingdom of Aragona. The remnants of this Moorish rule can be seen in the still visible city wall, which contrasts strongly with the city's numerous churches. Murcia flourished in the 18th century, mainly due to the boom of the silk industry. Many of its churches and monuments are from this period.
Today Murcia has a population of around 450,000, and the population of the metropolitan area is about 750,000 ranking it as the twelfth largest metropolitan area of Spain.
Murcia city itself is not very cosmopolitan. It is more of a peaceful place to live with lots of pedestrian streets, very kind people and some excellent restaurants.Until recently Murcia has been one of the least developed regions of coastal Spain. It was only the area around Mar Menor, Europe's largest salt water lagoon, that attracted developers interest.
This is about to change, not only because other coastal areas are running out of development potential, but also because there has been a relatively extensive investment into the infrastructure in the area, financed by EU funds. However, so far the coastline remains relatively unscathed by tourism and the major towns and small inland villages are still today Spanish in character.