Torreguadiaro was not always a thriving holiday town that it is today. When Joseph McMicking appeared on the scene with his plans to develop an exclusive community at Sotogrande, the coastal road, the N340 was a single-track tarmac road with dusty verges. The fishing village through which it passed had hardly grown, a collection of cottages housing the fishing families whose boats were drawn up in the sheltered bay at the eastern end of the village. The oldest part of the village surrounded the ruined tower that is now in the paseo the car park.
Torreguadiaro is distinguished in that it has two towers. The first and oldest, Torre Quebrada de Guadiaro, was built in the 15th century. It was a lookout to warn the surrounding farming families of any approaching pirates from the Barbary coast on the opposite shore of North Africa and a refuge for shepherds. The Torres are a feature on the Mediterranean coast occupying headlands every few kilometres.
In 1516 there is a report that the tower needed replacement due to it having been struck by lightning and split in two. A new tower, called, not surprisingly, Torre Nuevo de Guadiaro, was built on higher ground just south of the original tower. It is one of the most elaborate Torres on the coast with two floors, stairs, a chimney and an exterior door accessed by a rope ladder. The whole is roofed and is 14 metres in diameter and 16 metres tall. It can be seen next to the access road that leads from Torreguadiaro down to Sotogrande marina. In the late 18th century the Torre was equipped with a cannon and manned by a small company of soldiers who were housed in a small barracks building alongside. Later the building was used by the Guardia Civil. It was restored in 2015.
Gradually, as Sotogrande expanded, so too did Torreguadiaro. More modern houses and apartments were built, not to everyone’s taste but with breathtaking views, and the roadside properties became restaurants and bars.
Only 1 kilometre along the beach from Sotogrande, an easy walk, is the small town of Torreguadiaro which is a busy and relaxed town with an almost bohemian vibe to it. You will find a number of Tapas bars and restaurants here including:
- Cancha Tapas serving fabulously imaginative Tapas and Raciones (a little larger than a tapa) that are the creation of Rob Hibbert the Head Chef of both Cancha Tapas and the world class Argentine and a la Carte restaurant Cancha Dos located on the polo grounds in San Enrique de Guadiaro.
- Pura Tapa offering a vast array of modern Tapas in a lively bar setting.
- Inboca Gastrobar
There are also a number of Restaurants that offer both Tapas options and a full menu for dining:
- Sindikato offers a wide variety of tapas and a full menu. The Underclub nightclub is below this restaurant and Bahía Limón Chiringuito on Torreguadiaro beach are all run by the same management team.
- La Verandah offers a selection of tapas and a variety of local and international dining options
- El Trasmallo de Agostino specialising in Tapas, fish and paella with views from the main dining area across the beach and sea
You will also find the following amenities in Torreguadiaro:
- Mi Punto supermarket open 7 days a week
- Supermarket Alimentacion Bazar open 7 days a week
- Chambao Beach Bar/Chiringuito alongside Bahía Limón on Torreguadiaro Beach.