Eight easy routes on the Costa Blanca
There are numerous hiking routes that can be visited in the province of Alicante. Many are completely suitable for children or, simply, to travel them in a short time and dedicate the rest of the day to visit the nearest town. In addition, the eight simple routes proposed in this article do not require a great physical condition and have clear and busy itineraries, so it is difficult to get lost.
1. Faro de l’Albir, or Lighthouse of l’Albir (l’Alfàs del Pi).
It is located in the northeast corner of the Serra Gelada (or Sierra Helada), in the interior of the homonymous natural park that is also one of the most visited in the Valencian Community. The road to reach the lighthouse is suitable even for wheelchairs and allows you to observe a fascinating view of the bay of Altea, surrounded by beautiful mountains such as Puig Campana, Bèrnia or Morro de Toix, among others. In addition, next to the already automated lighthouse, which serves as an interpretation center, you can see the remains of the Bombarda Tower.
2. Font de la Coveta (Banyeres de Mariola).
It is the source that brings more water to the Vinalopó River, which springs up in the Racó de Bodí, not far away. The fountain springs inside a small cave, in the municipality of Bocairent (Valencia), but close to Banyeres de Mariola (Alicante). The mentioned river crosses different municipalities of the province of Alicante, whose corresponding castles are known as the Castillos del Vinalopó.
3. Cabo de Santa Pola.
It is a magnificent example of a fossil coral reef, since the current cape was formed on a gigantic coral atoll. On the same point we find different defensive structures of the Spanish Civil War, as well as two old coastal watchtowers. One of these was used for the construction of the current Santa Pola Lighthouse, from which a spectacular panoramic view of the island of Nueva Tabarca is obtained.
4. Natural Park of Font Roja (Alcoy).
Here is one of the most luxuriant oak forests of the Valencian Community. It is located in the Sierra del Menejador, whose summit is the fifth highest in Alicante, with 1356 meters above sea level. The source (Font Roja, or Red Source) owes its name to the reddish coloration of the surrounding clay soils. Next to this fountain is the Sanctuary of the Virgin of the Lilies, erected after the discovery of the image of the Virgin in some bulbs of the aforementioned plant.
5. Pantano de Elche, or Elche Reservoir.
Its arch dam, whose origin dates back to the seventeenth century, is one of the first of its kind built in Europe. Currently, the Elche reservoir constitutes an important wetland where different species of birds live. Also, next to it there are remains of an ancient Islamic settlement, known as El Castellar. In addition, a short distance away is El Cau, an open-air museum formed on an ancient quarry.
6. Cap d’Or (Teulada-Moraira).
Also known as Punta de Moraira. It is a small cape located east of the homonymous urban center. On the cape is the tower known as Torre del Cap d’Or, whose origin dates back to the sixteenth century. Also, in the surroundings is the cave of La Cendra (the ash), whose interior houses an important prehistoric site.
7. Natural Park of el Fondo d’Elx-Crevillent.
It was part of the disappeared Elche lagoon, which was drained in the eighteenth century to create new farmland and, around these, towns that still survive, such as Dolores or San Fulgencio. At present, the extensive natural park of el Fondo (or el Hondo) is one of the most important wetlands in the southeast of Spain, as many species of birds inhabit and nest there.
8. Natural Park of Penyal d’Ifac (Calpe).
It is, without doubt, one of the most emblematic natural elements of the Costa Blanca. The magical rock ascends to 327 meters above sea level, from where you can see a beautiful picture of the bay of Calp, the Sierras de Oltà, Bèrnia and Morro de Toix, among others. The visit is discouraged between the months of March and April (during breeding season), since it is crowded with territorial seagulls that can be somewhat aggressive. At the base of the rock we find an interesting archaeological site and an interpretation center.