Beach and mountain, the privilege of living on the Costa Blanca
NOTE: this article is an adaptation for English language made by Fernando Prieto, author of the original content published in LinkAlicante.
Welcome to the good weather! We love how the days are extending little by little. We love to enjoy those blue skies crossed by traveling clouds that could tell a thousand stories. The perfect time of year comes to go out to enjoy nature, the outbreak of flowering, the fantastic diversity of our province!
We love the mountain, but also the beach, our Mediterranean Sea! That’s why today we propose you these 10 hiking routes along the coast of the province of Alicante; because we have the privilege of being able to combine both things in one place!
Thanks to the excellent climate of our province, these proposals are ideal for any time of the year, although personally I love to enjoy them in the months of May-June, and September. There are not as many people as in July-August, but the sea is at a perfect temperature to combine the routes with baths, being the perfect occasion for snorkeling.
We have to apologize to the southern area of the province, our great forgotten! We know that there are excellent places for the beaches of Orihuela, Torrevieja, Santa Pola … but we must recognize that the northern part of the province pulls us out more, and that is why most of our routes take place in that area. But we promise to keep changing this, and pay more attention to the forgotten south !!
That said, we go with these fantastic (and it’s not palaver, they really are) 10 hiking trails to enjoy the Costa Blanca.
1. Ascent to the Penyal d’Ifac
We startefrom the top, and never better said: this unique rocky mass reaches 332 meters in height and allows you to enjoy extraordinary views from its summit. The “Peñón de Ifach” (Penyal d’Ifac in Valencian) is a symbol of the Costa Blanca, a first-class landscape landmark. It was declared a Natural Park in 1987, being today the most visited protected area in the Valencian Community.
This figure of protection, fortunately, has allowed the conservation of endemic flora species, which only grow here, defying gravity, winds and marine saltpeter. It has also allowed the rock to be a refuge for many species of birds, whose habitat is unfortunately decreasing as the urbanized area of our province increases. For all this, and much more, without a doubt the Penyal d’Ifac deserves to occupy a place in this list of routes to enjoy the coast!
See route Ascent to the Penyal d’Ifac » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
2. Serra Gelada crossing
From Calp, we move south to visit another of our protected natural areas: The Serra Gelada Natural Park. This impressive coastal mountain range, whose cliffs are among the highest in Europe, offers different routes to enjoy its varied flora and fauna. On this occasion, we will make the crossing along its entire ridge, which provides stunning views over the sea. A demanding route from the physical point of view, but also one of the most satisfactory in the province.
See route Serra Gelada Crossing » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
3. Albir Lighthouse Route
We stay in the Serra Gelada Natural Park, to enjoy another of its routes: the pleasant and accessible walk to the Lighthouse of l’Albir. A route suitable for all audiences, an “old acquaintance” of our blog, but which we like so much that we can not stop recommending. Like the previous route, it starts at the visitor reception center of l’Albir. From here, two and a half kilometers of asphalted track separate us from the beautiful lighthouse. Throughout the tour, we will enjoy excellent views of the Bay of Altea, as well as the mountains of the area, and the Penyal d’Ifac itself on the horizon. Essential!
See route Faro de l’Albir » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
4. The Coastal Path of the Vila Joiosa
continue our journey south to reach Vila Joiosa, a beautiful town with seafaring tradition. This linear path will allow us to enjoy a stretch of undeveloped coastline, about 4 kilometers long, between Platja el Torres and Cala de Finestrat. A very simple route with many attractions, such as the beautifulnaturist cove El Racó del Conill, or the old lookout tower for the defense of the coast: the Torre del Aguiló.
See route of the Coast and Vila Joiosa Trail » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
5. La Cova Tallada
We return to the Marina Alta region to recommend a route that at this point and many know. The Cova Tallada is an impressive cave next to the sea, partly natural and partly excavated by man. The wonder is hidden among the cliffs of the Marine Reserve of Cap de Sant Antoni, halfway between Dénia and Xàbia. It is a destination that, sadly, has been news due to the overcrowding it has suffered in recent years, especially in the summer months.
We suggest you visit it now, out of season, and if possible one day during the week. We propose to access it as what it is: a sacred place, a temple of nature, a gateway to the interior of Mother Earth. Try to cross its threshold in silence, letting the murmur of the waves be the only sound that resounds in the high vaults of the grotto. Listen in silence, let yourselves be invaded by the echo of its rocks, because only in this way will you discover the true treasure it houses …
See Cova Tallada Route » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
6. Granadella castle
A few kilometers further south, in Xàbia, we find one of the most famous and beloved coves of our province: the Cala Granadella. This is the starting point of a short route but somewhat complicated technically, because we found a couple of climbs equipped with chains. Nothing really difficult for people with mountain experience, although probably not appropriate for children. In any case, like most routes in this list, it is the perfect combination between beach and mountain. The PR-CV 354 trail will take us to the Morro del Castell, where we can visit the ruins of an old tower, which was built in the 18th century for defensive purposes. Here we also offer you a game: let yourself be soaked by the history of the place, let the stones speak, and imagine that you are the watchmen of the tower, attentive to the possible entrance of corsair ships, in communication with your companions of the Tower of Ambolo , on the other side of the bay …
See route Castell de la Granadella » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
7. Cap Prim and Sardinera cove
Closing the Bay of Xábia to the south, we find the formidable Cap Prim, a narrow tongue of land that juts out into the sea, giving shelter to Cala Sardinera. The simple walking tour starts at the Mirador de la Creu del Portitxol, and provides great views of the Montgó and its extension to the sea: the Cap de Sant Antoni. In addition, in this singular portion of the coast of Xábia, we find some of the best coves in the province, such as Cala Barraca or Portitxol. The latter can also be visited on foot, also starting the path of the Creu del Portitxol.
See Ruta Cap Prim and Cala Sardinera » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
8. The Cliffs of Benitatxell
We continue moving to the south, and thus we reach the coast of El Poble Nou de Benitatxell, famous for its impressive cliffs and beautiful coves with crystal clear waters. This route has become very popular in recent years, and deservedly: it is a simple route that will allow us to enjoy excellent views and, if time goes along, bathe in one of the last virgin coves of the province: CalaLlebeig.
Due to its popularity, we recommend again to visit it out of season, and avoid holidays or weekends. As in the Cova Tallada, we are in natural environments subject to high environmental pressure, so it is important to take care: do not leave trash, damage the flora or fauna, do not leave the path, etc.
See route of the Cliffs of Benitatxell » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
9. Cap d’Or ancient watchtower
A little further south, entering the coast of Teulada-Moraira, we reach the Cap d’Or. The point where the impressive cliffs of Benitatxell end, which in turn gives shelter to the beautiful Portet de Moraira. The Cap d’Or is an impressive watchtower that reaches 165 meters high, the place chosen for the construction of a watchtower in the sixteenth century. This simple route will take us to one of the best viewpoints of the Marina Alta, with views of the Penyal d’Ifac, among other reliefs.
See the watchtower route of the Cap d’Or » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)
10. The ecological path of the coast of Benissa
Wethis tour very close to where we started it: in Benissa. This ecological trail will take us to visit some of the most beautiful coves of the Marina Alta (and the province), such as Cala Baladrar. A very simple and suitable route for all audiences, with explanatory panels to better understand and value our environmental heritage, and realize how privileged we are to live in such a place.
See route Benissa Ecological Trail » (in spanish in LinkAlicante)