LLANES – With a coastline of about 8,000 kilometres long, it is logical that Spain has a wide variety of beaches. It is not for nothing that they attract millions of sun worshippers every year. Yet there is a good chance that you do not know this mini-beach.
It is called Gulpiyuri and is located on the Costa Verde in Asturias. You can walk from one side to the other in less than a minute. Gulpiyuri means “circle of water” in Asturian and is unique because the beach is not directly connected to the ocean. It lies about 100 metres inland and was created by erosion from the Cantabrian Sea, which created caves and channels. These underground channels allowed seawater to pass through. The result is a kind of isolated swimming pool in the middle of a lush green and rocky landscape.
The beach is around 50 metres long and looks more like a natural swimming pool. Because it has such a private location, it feels like you are in another dimension. Also, there are no waves which makes it a calm and serene oasis.
Of course, the beach is quickly full in the summer because many people want to see this special mini-beach with their own eyes. Furthermore, it is recommended to visit Gulpiyuri at high tide as sometimes it runs out of water at low tide. You can reach it via a path from the beach of San Antolín. From the cliffs, you then descend a staircase to get to the beach.
Although Gulpiyuri claims to be the smallest beach in the world, there is some debate about this. In Buelna, another place in Llanes, there is a similar beach called Cobijeru. This semi-circular beach, consisting of pebbles and sand, is smaller at about 30-40 metres in length and is surrounded by meadows, caves and forests. Nevertheless, Gulpiyuri remains a unique and enchanting place and worth a visit in the early or late season.