Heading south from the great stretches of beaches around the Mar Menor lagoon, the coastline becomes increasingly more mountainous with just occasional isolated coves. South of Cartagena the scenery becomes ever more stunning as the road winds through the hills towards Mazarrón. Once you pass the Hacienda at the top of the pass the road falls away down the escarpment and opens up to a magnificent view of the plains and Mediterranean sea below. Just over the pass there is a Mirador (view point), where you can pull up in the car. A few metres further on there is a sharp hairpin bend in the road with a sign "Curva muy Peligrosa" (very dangerous corner). As you come down the last slope turn left to La Azohia at the junction with the fishing boat.
The pretty fishing village La Azohia is situated at the most easterly point of the Gulf of Mazarron, roughly 10 kms east from the bustling resort of Puerto de Mazarrón. The mountains finally recede behind a peninsula called Cabo Tinoso, giving way again to vast stretches of beach which go all the way to Puerto de Mazarrón and south towards Aguilas. The village is in a truly beautiful location, still closely bound by a backdrop of dramatic scenery before the gulf deepens further inland, which not only protects it from easterly winds, but also from further development. La Azohia is a picturesque fishing village, the name means "Refuge" or "Retreat" in Arabic. From Puerto de Mazarrón the village can easily be reached by either car or bicycle, although it is really too far to contemplate by foot.
A land mark of La Azohia is the tower of St. Elena at the far end of the village, clearly visible from Brisa Del Mar and lit-up at night. An ascent from the village to the tower is best tackled on foot although the track is good enough for a car. The drive from Puerto de Mazarrón east of the village is a pleasant experience with many scenic bays and sea views, those who want to try it by bicycle will find few steep hills apart from the one on the approach to Isla Plana.
On arriving at La Azohia take a look at these anchors, which are normally by the quay. They are not placed here simply to be a tourist attraction, but are regularly used by local fishermen to anchor there massive tuna nets. During a week day you may be lucky enough to see a few naval ships and submarines in the bay, on their regular naval exercises from the large neighbouring port in Cartagena.
The ascent to St. Elena tower is via the lane opposite the fishing quay, keep to the widest part and you can't miss the way. The ascent is easy and only takes 15 to 20 minutes providing you with a wonderful view of the bay, village and surroundings as you reach the tower at the top. The tower was build in the last years of the 16th century during the reign of Philip II and was constructed to give the local fishermen warning of approaching pirates, giving a good lookout from it's height of 70 metres. It was renovated in the mid 1980s and is a popular place with tourists and weekend visitors.
Below the tower are remains of a military installation a searchlight station built after the Spanish civil war (1936 - 1939), it's purpose being to provide illumination for night time engagements by the nearby batteries of Cabo Tinoso.
Higher up and not directly accessable by car from La Azohia is the old road to the now derelict military site with four of the largest 38.1 Vickers artillery guns ever made. Popular legend has it that the film "Guns of Navarone" was made here! For more information on the Guns see the following link. To get there by car take the E22 road towards Cartagena and just outside La Azohia take the first right turn to Collado de los Ballesteros. This road goes past Campillo de Adentro and winds slowly up the mountain towards Los Castillitos. The drive up presents magnificent views. You can also walk up to the top, but its a long walk if you start from La Azohia there and back, you are better off driving up part of the way and leaving the car in one of the lay bys to walk the last few kms.