Problems with living in Spain

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08 Aug 2012 11:23 by Tiberon Star rating. 13 posts Send private message

I have been here for 10 years and choose to live in an English community because the Spanish areas are so filthy. There is paper and chewing gum and all other sorts of rubbish all over the pavements and public areas, not to mention the abundance of dead dogs and cats.  I have worked in India and Nigeria and believe me these places are clean compared to Spain.

I am not saying that ther UK is much better but at least the streets are cleaned and the police will charge people with litter offences. We holiday in Dubai, what a difference, there is no litter, pavements look they have just been laid and why because you will go to jail if you drop as much as a cigarette end. The people dont resent this, on the contrary they have a pride in keeping the place clean. If they see anybody dropping litter they will jump on the perpetrator and hold them until the police arrive.

The spanish government could do well to follow their example.

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08 Aug 2012 11:51 by I_Love_Javea Star rating in Gibraltar / Morocco .... 125 posts Send private message

 On your next trip to Dubai - buy a property and live there - problem solved!

Have a nice day 


Shiny happy people - where?

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08 Aug 2012 11:51 by normansands Star rating in Kent. 1281 posts Send private message

Oh Dear,

This doesn't sound like the wonderful friendly people the happies are always telling us about??????

they all tell us they don't want to sell their places but is it all a marketing exercise?????

if that is the case then who is doing the cleaning are the brits rolling up their sleeves and doing it themselves????

surely all the happies are not so full of cheap drink and sunstroke that they cannot see it?????



N. Sands

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08 Aug 2012 12:07 by TP1 Star rating in Milton Keynes and Ca.... 161 posts Send private message

Amazed by your observations.

I am always so pleased to get to Spain and marvel at how clean and litter free the streets are and how clean the public transport is.  and always so depressed when i get back to Luton airport ....

Don't know what area you are in but it sounds awful and imho not typical.  Maybe your 10 years in Spain has dulled your memory of Blighty (or maybe it has got worse) but the litter here and the general disresprect shown by your average member of public is awful here in Blighty.

I know where i would rather be and if it wasn't for Educating my son here and my 'good' job that pays the mortgage then i would be off like a shot to Calpe on the Costa Blanca .

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08 Aug 2012 12:36 by marcbernard Star rating in Marina Alta; Alicant.... 251 posts Send private message

I agree with TP1. Here in the village of Benitachell, in Marina Alta, Alicante province, the streets are immaculate, the neighbours, both Spanish and others, very friendly and we have no complaints other than the odd noisy dog. However when one family of Brits come over for their holidays things deteriorate, behaviourwise. As said, it depends on where you live. Please do not tar all with the same brush. We have been in Marina Alta since 1985 and would never leave voluntarily.

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08 Aug 2012 12:58 by bobaol Star rating. 2256 posts Send private message

bobaol´s avatar

 Totally different experience from what Tiberon has had.  Yes, you do see some rubbish on the streets in the early evening but it has all gone by the morning.  Our community is multi-national and is constantly being cleaned and tidied.  Outside, the street sweepers come on a regular basis.  In comparison with places like Belgium (surely the dirtiest little country in the whole of Europe with Brussels being the dog-crap capital of the world, it's a good job it rains so much there to wash it away a little bit) or even UK (I once felt rather embarrassed with some American friends who pointed out all the rubbish on the motorway verges and central reservations) I find it very good here.  Even the verges on the roads are constantly being cleaned, tidied and the bushes and shrubs trimmed.  Travelling on the motorway from Madrid to Burgos a couple of months ago and cleaners were going up and down the verges picking up rubbish.  Coming back a couple of weeks later and they were there again ensuring the verges and central reservations were tidy and clean.  

Sorry, bit of a non-story here and I'm wondering whether Norman is doing his sock puppet act again and starting threads in one name so he can "talk to himself"  in his other guise.  Oh, and his disparaging jibe of "happies" is having a bit of a backlash.  Quite happy to be happy, thank you very much.  I'd hate to live a life of permanent melancholy as he appears to do.  

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08 Aug 2012 13:31 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5240 posts Send private message

I wonder where the Spain is that Tiberon is talking about ?


Our roadsweepers are there at work every day, including weekends, ferias and even Christmas day. 

Really nice, predominately Spanish area. 

No complaints really. 

But of course I exclude some of the holidaymakers, mainly British,  at this time of year.

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08 Aug 2012 15:03 by Lifeline Star rating in Murcia. 367 posts Send private message

Lifeline´s avatar

 Where We Live!

The Spanish ladies put us to shame. There homes are so clean and they brush and hose as far as the pavement. They clean the grids all the time. The road sweepers take the rest.

The dirty areas can be around our communal bins as they get raided by those who need more money to live and then there can be mess around.These bins are emptied six nights in the week.

However the Spanish around here mostly have not learned to pick up dog poo and that can be messy. 

Our greatest problem is dust and sand which seems to arrive from the Sahara whenever the wind blows.

We will take the sunshine and warm, dry weather any day.



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08 Aug 2012 16:18 by joe1949 Star rating in Manchester. 61 posts Send private message

 In my part of Murcia there was a huge pile of litter in November & it was still there next May. The Sea has plastic bags floating in it and there is a lot of graffiti and dog excrement everywhere. I find it quite depressing that the Spanish seem to take little pride in their environment as long as the tills in the bars & restaurants are chinging. I wrote twice to the Ayuntamento-no reply. However I was in Pt Andraix ,Majorca in June and everywhere was spotless. I guess its just like UK & depends what socio economic class you are amongst. 

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08 Aug 2012 17:00 by I_Love_Javea Star rating in Gibraltar / Morocco .... 125 posts Send private message

 Spain and the Spanish are clean by nature. On the few occasions I have seen areas of rubbish it is where the Expats congregate in their gettos. Our rubbish is collected daily on variuos occasions, the ayuntamiento offer free collection of large household items and white goods by prior appointment from your property. There are huge containers within a couple of kms of any property for garden waste. Our roads and beaches are cleaned every day.

Of course people will say that you are lucky you live in a good area, that may be true but I have travelled extensively throughout Spain and can honestly say that the only times I have seen any real signs of neglect is in a few expat areas of the Marina Baja, Murcia and Almeria.

Life is like a shit sandwich

The more bread you have the less shit you have to eat!


Shiny happy people - where?

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08 Aug 2012 17:59 by joe1949 Star rating in Manchester. 61 posts Send private message

 Its certainly not the Expats at fault in my area. I regularly see them cleaning up around the area. Go into any spanish bar and examine the floor below where the locals have been sat having tapas.  I just think if Bar/Restaurant owners took the trouble to clean outside their individual premises the place would be a whole lot cleaner. There are a lot of Moroccans and South Americans in the area and they clearly have different standards of cleanliness. With mass unemployment they could easily utilise this to smarrten up the area.

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08 Aug 2012 18:44 by Patty_1 Star rating in Hertfordshire. UK. .... 1062 posts Send private message

 Well have to say our area is kept lovely and clean road sweepers round all the time and bins emptied every day. The Spanish in the village are always cleaning and very particular Cleaning and cooking for their older relatives and taking meals to  them.     

Even by the river the flower beds are kept immaculate the roses are lovely, the trees are cut to different shapes it looks very well kept.





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10 Aug 2012 16:15 by ohnoes Star rating. 14 posts Send private message

 Sounds completely different to when I was last there. Pretty much everywhere I can think of in Spain was freakishly clean, especially Torrevieja city centre. Lots of graffiti,  but no litter at all. Cannot recall seeing any dead dogs in the street. Closer to Singapore than Lagos, in my opinion! 

I remeber the woman on the block accross the street from us used to clean the railing on her balcony a couple of time a week. She actually went around every single with a toothbrush FFS. It was embarassing since we just slopped a wet mop along the railing after those weird dust storms. 




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10 Aug 2012 22:28 by Tiberon Star rating. 13 posts Send private message

It sounds like you all live in wonderful parts of Spain, lucky you. Here in Mazarron, especially the Port and surrounding areas, effectively all the way to Cartagena, there is a sea of waste matter. Pavements almost completely coverred in chewing gum, spanish bars with the sea of nut shells on the floor and cigarette ends everywhere, no smoking has not caught on here yet. On our urbanisation we all pay towards street cleaning which is carried out by a regular team of residents and we carry out our own road repairs and maintenance of green areas.

Dubai would be a lovely place to live except for much of the year its too hot and foreigners are not allowed to buy property. We are lucky to have the use of our sons apartment, quite nice but only 2 bed and the rent £1200 per WEEK. My pension wont stretch to that.

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10 Aug 2012 23:15 by ojosazul88 Star rating. 171 posts Send private message

Tiberon, Puerto de Mazarron is not as bad you describe, have been many times ,As for Dubai, fake in so many ways, sub standard building quality on many new builds,construction  workers treated appallingly, medieval stone age laws, of course foreigners can buy property there, where have you been for the last 10 years, thousands of "investors" purchased "luxury" property and many have lost deposits on properties not completed in Dubai,   


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11 Aug 2012 00:57 by ohnoes Star rating. 14 posts Send private message

 Tiberon, if you measure cities by clenliness, then Dubai really isn't what you imagine. You are aware that most of the sewage from all those gleaming new buildings gets dumped, untreated, straight into the sea? Sea being the small, shallow (50m average depth) and near landlocked Persian Gulf, which is also where your desalinated drinking water comes from. 

That's also the place with debtors prisons,  no workers protection of any kind, and almost literally feudal government and citizenship arrangements. Plus, you can find yourself divorced by text message. Even as a one-time Muslim, I'd certainly feel out of place there.

I think I'll stick with the EU. Better to step on street gum that get led to secret prison by a gun ;)

If you want sterile clean and no crime, then Singapore is probabaly a better bet, and though the government is fairly draconian, at least there are fixed laws and procedures (however slewed in favour of the PAP they may be) rather than just the personal whim of the local prince. I quite liked it, but I was more ready to follow orders without question back then. I think now I'd find the comformity annoying.


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11 Aug 2012 09:03 by Daniels Star rating in Waterlooville & Pent.... 220 posts Send private message


I live in the Middle East and visit the Mazarron at least 4 times a year (I own an apartment in the area) and do not agree with your view on Dubai or Mazarron.

Dubai might be great in the 5 and 6 star hotels and new shopping malls, but step outside of that zone and you will see the real Dubai. If you're not the right colour you will be left in the street after an accident. The build quality as said previously is appalling, some of the high rise have to use tape to stop the glass from rattling and keep the dust out. Look 500 yards off the beaten track and see a very different Dubai.

As for Mazarron, I love the place, haven't noticed the sea of waste in the last 4 years. The bay at Bolnuevo is renowned for scuba diving; many of the beaches are packed tight with family groups all having a great time. The Puerto de Mazarron is a fantastic place to eat and walk around, chill out. I don't remember seeing gum, cigarette ends everywhere in May, June or July but will keep an eye out in Oct. Yes they do eat sunflower seeds and leave the cases on the floor, could be a culture thing.

Would rather be in Spain than anywhere else. Just my opinion


May be tomorrow.......... Always better today!!

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12 Aug 2012 11:54 by Tiberon Star rating. 13 posts Send private message


You obviously dont get out much. Both the litter and the chewing gum splattered streets are still there this morning. I would be very upset if I was mooring a boat there. Take a drive around the back roads and villages and count how many dead dogs and cats you see and we always seem to encounter spanish men urinating at the side of the road, an arrestable offence in most other countries. Compare this to when I walk out from our apartment building on Jumeirah Beach, you could eat off the pavement though you wouldn't be allowed to.

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12 Aug 2012 12:05 by I_Love_Javea Star rating in Gibraltar / Morocco .... 125 posts Send private message

 Hey Sharky

You are obviously a troll and not a very funny one at that!

Sad that you have nothing better to do than try to be clever without effect.

Dictatorships do not allow people to relieve themselves on their own land but are responsible for releiving themselves on their own people.

All arab countries are filthy in huge swathes, the parts where the priviledged families do not tread.

You do not need to justify your gibberish to me or anyone else though I think you probably will continue to do so. I for one could not care less for your drivel and I do not expect you to bear any heed to mine.

Don't take offence - Have a nice day in your apartment in your grime ridden area.


Shiny happy people - where?

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12 Aug 2012 17:26 by camposol Star rating in Camposol. 1408 posts Send private message

Tiberon - I agree with a lot of what you say. T he council have spent millions improving the port and marina and it looked lovely with its new paving, seating etc, but the whole area has been spoilt by blackened chewing gum, cigarette butts, which the owners don't regard as litter.  There are many rubbish bins, apparently ornamental.On the beach, disposable nappies, plastic bottles, dog mess( thought dogs  were banned from the beach) The town of Mazarron used to be quite clean but now the main pavements are very stained with? Every corner is stained dark with dog/ human urine and it smells.  Loads of chewing gum too.There's a lot of dog mess down the side streets. It could do with a good pressure wash.  Perhaps the council have cut down on the street cleaner.  Undoubtably some areas are kept clean, while in others rubbish is just dumped where there's a space. I hate, it when after a fiesta, the area is awash with litter, especially plastic bottles-I know they eventually clean it all up, but why can't they use black bags and clean as they go? I once took relatives to see the town of Aledo, a very pretty place, only to be embarrassed by the sea of litter following a fiesta. I've lived here 11 years and have seen things get worse.

I love Javea- sometimes you have to take off the rose coloured glasses and accept that others know what they are talking about!

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