With Penon de Ifach
Just a day in Calpe is not enough to see everything it has to offer. There are so many things to see such as the Peñon de Ifach, and the salt lake as well as the medieval and Roman ruins. In addition to the white coves surrounded by crystal clear water.
How to get to Calpe?
When you come by car you can only get to Calpe over the N-332, as Calpe does not have a direct access to the AP-7 Toll motorway. Either exit this motorway in the north at Benissa or in the south in Altea. If you decide to use public transport you can choose the tram-via line 9 that travels between Benidorm and Dénia. Do you prefer the bus? Then take the line from ALSA that travels between Dénia and Benidorm just like the tram-via.
Things to see in Calpe?
Obviously, the symbol that towers over the city, the Peñon de Ifach, you will see this landmark even long before you arrive in the town. It is an ideal place for lovers of nature, hiking, and photography. The sea breeze and the sounds of the sea help everyone to disconnect from daily chores.
The higher up the mountain we go, the better we see the port that connects the promenade with this rock. The conservation center appears in front of us and offers an exhibition about the different cultures that used the rock during history.
We recommend climbing the Peñon early in the morning, in order to see the sun come up from the sea. This is a magical moment that you can enjoy almost alone before more people start arriving.
The Racó cove (Cala de Racó)
Calpe indisputable is a beach town and one of the wonderful beaches of Calpe is in Cala del Racó. It is a small cove that is accessible through the port, just behind the entrance of the Nautical Club. There is also a chiringuito to sit and relax after having climbed the Peñon de Ifach. It is definitely worth walking along this small beach of pebbles with crystal clear water.
Eco walk “Prince of Asturias” (Paseo ecológico Príncipe de Asturias)
Next to the Cala del Racó starts this walking trail, it is possible to walk or cycle this route and enjoy the views of the sea and the Peñon de Ifach.
The Salt Lake (Las Salinas)
In line with the other natural spaces, Calpe offers we must mention Las Salinas as well. The Peñon de Ifach made it possible for this salt lake to form. At the present day, this lake is situated surprisingly close to the urban area of the town. This natural space is of important ecological value because of the bird species that live there, especially pink flamingos. A curious fact is that residents extracted the salt from the lake to conserve the fish that arrived in the port.
The queen´s baths (Los Baños de la Reina)
The queen’s baths are Roman ruins that over time turned into a fish farm. However, nowadays they are used as “natural” pools where you can take a dip in summer. Many people take pictures with the big rock as background. After this, it is time to leave the coast and move to the tranquillity of the historic center. For this, we will have to pass the remains of the defensive walls of the town that were built during the fifteenth century.
Standing fiercely next to the walls is the Peça tower, one of the defensive systems of the citadel. It was discovered after the wall was partly demolished in the 1950s. Today it houses a Museum, where temporary public and private collections are exhibited.
The church of Nuestra Señora de las Nieves built in the twentieth century stands on the other side of the wall. It has beautiful stained glass windows and a mosaic front. The gateway (el Portalet) to the citadel used to be where the exhibition hall “Ajuntament Vell” is located today. Before this new building became an exhibition hall it served as a town hall, judicial office, and even as a jail.
The walls decorated with lots of pots with flowers characterize the historic center and give it a special charm. The entrance to the Hermitage of San Salvador, constructed in the eighteenth century, is located at the other end of the old town. It is worth going up the steps to reach it and enjoy the great views of the city from up there.
It is very interesting to visit the fish market and the auction of the fresh catch in the port of Calpe. You get to know and enjoy the authentic spirit of the fishermen of Calpe. The auction is held from Monday to Friday after the fishing vessels have arrived, around 17.00 hrs.
As in many other villages on the coast in the Costa Blanca, the main ingredients of the gastronomy of Calpe are fish and rice. The restaurants closest to the port offer the freshest products for lunch or dinner. The seafood and fish are brought in straight from the boats. It is worth paying a little more than usual for such fresh food. The most typical plate of food in Calpe is Senyoret rice.
Another typical dish is the Llauna de Calp, which has potatoes, tomatoes, and fish as the main ingredients.
We invite you to go and visit Calpe and to share your experiences and comments with us. Leave your comments for us and other readers to enjoy.
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