8 Best Things To Do In Lorca, Spain

Welcome to the Baroque city of Lorca, a place full of history, traditions, as well as colorful and passionate celebrations. From Paleolithic times Lorca was home to a wide range of cultures that left evidence of their existence. During Muslim domination over Spain, the city was a frontier between Christians and Moors and saw many fierce battles and bloodshed which only enriched its history. Lorca also has experienced many natural disasters, like floods, plagues, and earthquakes. A recent earthquake from May 2011 seriously damaged the city and the castle and killed 9 people. All of the past events gave Lorca the form we can see today. So come, let’s discover the best things to do in Lorca, Spain in one day. 

Interesting fact. Thanks to many Baroque monuments in the old town, Lorca was declared a Historic and Artistic Site in 1964. 

Best Things To Do In Lorca, Spain
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Lorca, Spain FAQ

Where is Lorca located? 

Lorca is a Spanish city located in the Region of Murcia in the south-eastern part of the country, about 60km from Murcia. Fun fact: Lorca is the municipality with the second-largest surface area in Spain, and its area extends up to the Mediterranean Sea which is around 35km away!

Why is Lorca famous? 

Lorca is most famous for being called a “Baroque city”, due to the high number of baroque monuments in its historical center. It’s also famous for its spectacular fortress overlooking the city, the only church in Spain dedicated to St. Patrick, and Easter Week celebrations. 

Is Lorca worth visiting?

Visiting Lorca might be a good idea while traveling in the Region of Murcia, especially for those interested in history or religion. If you already visited places like Cartagena, Murcia, or La Manga del Mar Menor and still have time for more add Lorca to your list. Overall, there aren’t many things to do in the city and it’s easy to see all of them in just a few hours. 

When is the best time to visit Lorca? 

The best time to visit Lorca depends on your preferences. City enjoys a pleasant Mediterranean climate with mild winters and hot summers. If you want to avoid crowds and high temperatures above 30°C visit during the low season, between September and May (excluding Easter time). If high temperatures and crowds don’t bother you, you can visit the city during the high season. 

How far is Lorca from the sea?

Lorca is located about 35km from the sea, in a straight line, ~40km on foot, and ~50km by car. The closest beaches are located in the Aguilas area. 

Things to do in Lorca - explore Lorca Old Town
Things to do in Lorca - visit Lorca Castle
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Things To Do In Lorca, Spain 

Lorca Castle – Fortress of the Sun

The number one thing to do in Lorca is to explore the impressive Lorca Castle (es. Castillo de Lorca), also known as The Fortress of the Sun (es. Fortaleza Del Sol). This main city landmark of medieval origin was built between the 9-15th centuries. Thanks to its strategic location on a hill that provided a good view of the surroundings, the castle served for around 900 years for both Moors and Christians. Lorca Castle is one of the largest castles in Spain and is a National Historic Monument since 1931. 

Lorca Castle was recaptured from Moors by the Christians in 1244 and became an important defensive point against the Kingdom of Granada for the next 250 years, up to the conquest of Granada in 1492. During the rule of the Christians, more towers and walls were built in order to strengthen the defensive system. After 1492, the castle ceased to be of great importance, and over time it was abandoned. Due to the Spanish War of Independence in the 19th century, the castle was repaired and cannons were added. 

Things To Do In Lorca, Spain - visit Lorca Castle
Explore Lorca Castle - Fortress of the Sun
Main square in Lorca Castle, the Fortress of the Sun
Main square in Lorca Castle in Spain

Unfortunately, an earthquake in Lorca in 2011 damaged some of the walls and towers. Nowadays, the castle is a popular place for holding various celebrations, exhibitions, and shows. It also serves as a background for re-enactments of the various battles. 

Entrance to Lorca Castle is free, although the entrance to towers, Archeological Park, or Synagogue is not, price – €3.5 (August 2023). For current prices and opening hours please visit lorcatallerdeltiempo.es website. 

Views over Lorca surroundings from Lorca Castle, the Fortress of the Sun
Views over Lorca city from Lorca Castle in Spain

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Lorca Old Town 

Discovering Lorca’s old town is a great way of getting to know the town. Here, especially those who love history will be delighted by strolling among its streets, squares and by visiting Lorca museums. In Lorca’s old town, you’ll find many points of interest like Plaza de Espana with St. Patrick’s Church, Archaeology Museum, Palace of Guevara, or Embroidery Museum. Let’s go and take a closer look at them. 

Beautiful mural in Lorca Old Town Streets
Lorca, Spain - Old Town Streets
Discover Lorca Old Town Streets
Explore Baroque City of Lorca in Spain

Plaza de Espana with Collegiate Church of St. Patrick 

Plaza de Espana is the town’s main square, located in the heart of Lorca’s old town. Back in time, it was called Plaza de Afuera (outside square) as it was located just outside the city walls. In the square, you’ll find many buildings built between the 16-18th centuries, including the Collegiate Church of St. Patrick and Lorca Town Hall. Plaza de Espana has been declared an Asset of Cultural Interest. 

Without a doubt, the Collegiate Church of St. Patrick is the most striking monument on Plaza de Espana. It was built between 1533-1780 in Baroque and Renaissance styles. The most interesting fact about it is that it’s the only church in Spain dedicated to Saint Patrick (yes, the famous one from Ireland). All because of the Battle of Los Alporchones that was fought on 17th March 1452 (St. Patrick’s Day) in the area around Lorca. The Collegiate Church of St. Patrick was declared a National Historic-Artistic site in 1941.

Guevara Palace

Guevara Palace (es. Palacio de Guevara) is one of the most emblematic Baroque buildings in Lorca, also known as the “house of the columns”. It was built at the end of the 17th century by the Guevara family. What stands out the most it’s the facade with impressive doors with four Solomonic columns and a huge coat of arms. Guevara Palace was damaged in the 2011 earthquake and completely restored in the following years. It was declared an Asset of Cultural Interest in 2008.

Guevara Palace is temporarily closed (August 2023). For the latest information visit turismoregiondemurcia.es website. 

Right next to Guevara Palace, you’ll also find San Mateo church, one more example of a Baroque-style building in Lorca.  

Plaza de Espana with Collegiate Church of St. Patrick in Lorca, Spain
Source: pixabay.com

Archaeological Museum of Lorca

Archaeological Museum of Lorca (es. Museo Arqueológico de Lorca) is located in the old town, in the beautiful 17th century House of Salazar. Inside you’ll find exhibits that will allow you to dive into Lorca’s history, from Prehistory to the end of the Middle Ages. Museum was damaged in the 2011 earthquake and completely remodeled with earthquake-proof exhibition cases to protect the artifacts. Entrance to the museum is free (August 2023). For current prices and opening hours please visit museoarqueologico.lorca.es website. 

Lorca Embroidery Museum

A visit to the Embroidery Museum (es. Museo de Bordados del Paso Blanco) is quite an interesting thing to do in Lorca. It showcases over 1500 hand-embroidered pieces in silk and gold that were used by brotherhoods that organize famous Semana Santa celebrations in Lorca. Museum treasures pieces from the end of the 19th century, including six that were declared Assets of Cultural Interest. In the Embroidery Museum, you’ll also be able to see videos showcasing celebrations during which the embroideries were used at. 

General ticket to Embroidery Museum costs 3€ and €2.5 reduced (August 2023). For current prices and opening hours visit mubbla.org website.

Archaeological Museum of Lorca in Spain
Museo de Bordados del Paso Blanco in Lorca, Spain

Festivals in Lorca, Spain

Semana Santa in Lorca

Many consider Semana Santa celebrations in Lorca to be the best in the whole of Spain. In fact, it’s even considered an event of International Touristic Interest and part of the Cultural Heritage of the city! In March or April, depending on the year, Lorca comes alive with a profound display of religious devotion. 

Parades with floats adorned with stunning sculptures that depict scenes from the Passion of Christ, chariot races, Brotherhoods processions with hundreds dressed in characteristic robes… You’ll find all this, and more, during Holy Week celebrations in Lorca. Semana Santa in Lorca is a unique opportunity to witness a centuries-old tradition that embodies the heart and soul of Spanish culture.

How to get to Lorca, Spain? 

Lorca is located about 70km from Murcia, 90km from Cartagena, 140km from Alicante, and 110km from La Manga del Mar Menor. The most convenient way to get to Lorca is by car, bus, or train.

Where to park in Lorca?

If you’re traveling by car you can choose from some parking lots available in the city center. Most of them are paid. We left our car in this paid parking lot located just a few steps from most attractions in the old town. Lorca Castle has its own parking which tends to be free of season.

Airports near Lorca

The closest airport to Lorca is located in Murcia, about 70km away from the city center. The next one is located in Alicante, about 135km away. Both airports offer bus connections to Lorca. To learn more about connections that might interest you visit rome2rio.com website.

To Lorca by bus

You can easily reach Lorca by bus. For example, a trip from Murcia will take about 1h (€5-16) and 2.5h from Cartagena (€9-28). To learn more about bus connections that might interest you visit rome2rio.com website.

To Lorca by train

Lorca has a train station so you can get there by train from cities like Alicante, Cartagena or Madrid. You can check out a map of available connections on acprail.com website.

Camping Lorca

If you’re traveling by camper, places like Area Autocaravanas Lorcaturismo, Camperstop Sierra Espuña or Camping Totana might interest you. All of them are located in close proximity to Lorca. 

How to get to Lorca, Spain?

Things to do in Lorca, Spain – Summing up 

Now you know what are the best things to do in Lorca, Spain. It’s definitely a great destination for those interested in history or religion. If you’ve already seen other places in the Region of Murcia like Cartagena, Murcia, La Manga, or Bateria De Castillitos you can give Lorca a try. If not, visit them first and then decide if you also want to explore this town. We hope you’ll enjoy it.  

Our video from Lorca

Our opinion about Lorca

For us, a visit to Lorca was a day trip from La Manga del Mar Menor. We visited the city in late April and during that time it was very quiet. During about 4h we managed to visit each place we had on our list, so it was quite a fast trip. 

Unfortunately, we didn’t really enjoy our time in Lorca that much. We found its old town quite boring and we didn’t really find many spots that amazed us. On the other hand, we loved Lorca Castle, and if not for it, we’d left very disappointed. In retrospect, we would have visited the city during the Santa Semana celebrations as they seem to be very interesting to experience. 

Things to do in Lorca, Spain - Happy Little Traveler opinion
Discover best things to do in Lorca, Spain

Restaurants, accommodations, and map

Check out various recommended places below.

Where to eat in Lorca?

Here are your best, high-rated options in Lorca:

Where to sleep in Lorca?

Parador de Lorca in Lorca Spain

Parador de Lorca

Nestled in the historic city of Lorca, "Parador de Lorca" offers a unique blend of modern comfort and cultural richness. Housed within the impressive Lorca Castle complex, this luxurious hotel provides guests with stunning panoramic views of the city and surrounding landscapes. With its elegant rooms, excellent dining options, and a serene spa, it's an ideal choice for travelers seeking a captivating blend of history and relaxation.

El 32 apartment in Lorca Spain

El 32

"El 32" in Lorca is a a great apartament that offers a unique blend of modern comfort and historical charm. Located in the heart of the city it provides well-designed space with contemporary amenities, making it an ideal base for exploring the local attractions.

Hostal Casa Juan in Lorca Spain

Hostal Casa Juan

"Hostal Casa Juan" in Lorca offers a charming and welcoming stay for travelers exploring the region. Conveniently located in the heart of the city, this cozy hostel provides comfortable rooms and a warm atmosphere. With its attentive staff and proximity to Lorca's cultural attractions it's an excellent choice especially for budget travelers.

Accommodations photos source: booking.com

Lorca, Spain - Map of places

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8 Best Things To Do In Lorca, Spain

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