Have you heard of the Costa Blanca? It's the area of the Mediterranean Sea that belongs to the province of Alicante (in the southern Region of Valencia). With more than 3,000 hours of sunshine a year and an average annual temperature of 18ºC, it is a great destination for getting away from your routine. The Costa Blanca has 170 fine sandy beaches and rocky coves along 200 kilometres, with tourist-magnet towns like Benidorm. This time we propose four specific destinations if you are looking to get in touch with nature and relax: Calpe, Altea, Jávea and Dénia. These are places of pure Mediterranean essence with beautiful landscapes, the option to practice activities such as sailing or diving, and a cuisine closely linked to the sea.
One of the most beautiful towns on the Costa Blanca, its great symbol is the Peñon de Ifach, an iconic mountain next to the highest cliff in the Mediterranean. There is a route to climb to the top and enjoy the breathtaking views. There is also a pleasant ecological walk along the south of the rock for you to contemplate its steep walls. Other landscapes that will surprise you include the salt flats (where you can observe birds such as flamingos), and the nearby Oltà mountains.Several civilisations have passed through Calpe over the centuries and there is ample proof of this in its beautiful old town centre, heritage buildings like Torreó de la Peça, and the Roman archaeological site at Baños de la Reina. Of course, you can't forget its beaches such as Levante or La Fossa, Cantal Roig and Arenal-Bol. In addition, less than 10 minutes from the town centre, you will find three marinas with a total of 460 moorings where you can take part in activities such as sailing, marine excursions, etc. To enjoy the local seafood, take a stroll around the fishing port and visit the fish market. In addition, you will enjoy the traditional handmade sweet cakes, authentic delicacies.
If you are looking for peace and quiet, Altea is the place for you. It is known as the "dome of the Mediterranean", as the structure of the Church of Nuestra Señora del Consuelo stands out from afar. You can get to this church on a stroll through the old town with its cobbled streets, white houses decorated with flowers, and charming viewpoints such as Portal Vell. Altea is also known for its pebble beaches (L'Olla, Solsida, Cap Negret, Albir, Cala del Mascarat and La Roda) where you can spend a whole day in the sun. A stroll along the promenade and the marina is also not to be missed.If you fancy hiking, you will find several routes in the nearby Serra Gelada Natural Park. At lunchtime, among its typical dishes you can order paella with boquerones (anchovies) or arroz del senyoret (seafood rice). If you also want to explore inland, you can take a trip to El Castell de Guadalest (half an hour's drive away), recognised as one of the most beautiful villages in Spain.
Fall in love with Jávea
Jávea (Xàbia in Valencian) has such magical views and viewpoints that you will never want to leave. To give just one example, Cape San Antonio has some amazing cliffs and from there you can take some incredible photographs. Spending the day on its magnificent beaches (such as El Arenal) and coves (such as Granadella or Portitxol) is always a pleasure. You can also try fresh fish in the restaurants near the harbour or go on a boat or kayak trip to see the different capes and caves such as Cabo de San Martín, Cabo de La Nao or Llop Mari cave, and take a swim in the crystal clear waters. On a walk through its medieval old town you will see whitewashed houses with stone doors, windows and balconies, walk through narrow streets decorated with plants such as the Estret alley, see the Church of San Bartolomé or the Mercado de Abastos, and you can make stops in different shops and restaurants. You can also plan an excursion to the 14th- and 18th-century windmills of La Plana or a hiking route through Montgó Natural Park.
It has around 20 kilometres of coastline where you can choose between extensive and well-kept beaches or rocky coves such as Punta del Raset, Les Marines, Les Deveses, Les Bovetes and Els Molins.One of its most beautiful natural areas is the Cova Tallada, between the cliffs of Cape San Antonio. Keep in mind that it is difficult to access and that in the summer months you usually need to make a reservation in advance. Also, in summer you can usually sign up for easy guided walking tours at dusk or at night to discover some of its most beautiful landscapes, such as Montgó Natural Park. Many include tastings of local products. In addition to a stroll through the old part of the town, a visit to its castle, which is more than 2,000 years old (it houses an archaeological museum inside) and a tour of the Baix La Mar fishermen's quarter and the marina are not to be missed.At lunchtime, there are many seafood products such as its delicious red shrimp (try to visit the fish market). Here you will find the 3 Michelin Star restaurant of the renowned chef Quique Dacosta. As all these towns are very close to each other, we recommend you to rent a car to get to know them in a nice, relaxed road trip along the coast.