The city is surrounded by water on every side but one and has a beach that's a byword for fashion all year round. Peñíscola is one of the most popular tourist resorts in the province of Castellón. The castle, perched on a large ridge overlooking the sea, offers a glimpse of its past at a time when knights and battlemented fortresses occupied the lands of El Maestrazgo. Pope Benedict XIII, known as 'Papa Luna', chose this as a place of seclusion and to launch the fight for the unity of the Catholic Church. The fortress stands on the highest point of the peninsula. The parade ground offers as a delightful balcony over the Mediterranean, and its keep makes the perfect place to see a panoramic view of the coastline. In spring and summer this walled enclosure hosts a Spanish comic film festival and a festival of old and Baroque music. But this jewel in the heritage of the small peninsula and the site of the historic quarter is only a part of the town as it is today. Outside the defensive walls there are numerous hotels, apartments and residential estates which are a testament to this fashionable beach venue's reputation as a tourist resort. Visitors may also like to see the lighthouse and the Museum of the Sea, or go hiking or mountain biking in the Sierra de Irta nature reserve.
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