Calpe and Altea
From Dénia to Calpe, if you go by car, take the motorway AP-7 (exit no.63), or use the main road N-332, via Gata-Teulada-Benissa-Calpe. Calpe is located 30 kms. from Dénia.
The imposing Peñón de Ifach (the Ifach Rock), Spain declared this a Natural Park in 1987. Climb up to the summit of the rock to enjoy the beautiful views (Altitude 332m). At the start of your climb you will find the Aula de la Naturaleza, (The Visitors' Nature Centre) where information is displayed about the Natural Park in exhibitions and audiovisual shows.
The archaeological remains of "Los Baños de la Reina" (The Queen´s Baths"), dating from IV-V centuries AD, are located between Calpe town and the Peñón; these remains of a Roman villa formed part of a fish factory which, as you will see, is still in a good state of preservation.
In the old town you will find the "Torreó de la Peça", which houses the architectural remains of a military fortress dating from the end of the 14th century. These remains were reinforced in the 18th century by order of Felipe III and further restored in 1981. Nearby are the "murallas" (XIV and XV centuries), and the"Forat de la Mar", which is a gateway into the town opened by the French troops in 1813. "La Iglesia Antigua" ("The Ancient Church", is the only example of Mudéjar Gothic architecture in the Valencian Community, and "la Iglesia Parroquial Ntra. Sra. de las Nieves" ("The Parish Church of Our Lady of the Snows") is of great interest for its stained glass windows and its façade decorated with mosaics.
Coastal walk. Parallel to the coast are the promenades and walkways known as the Infanta Elena promenade, -along the Arenal-Bol beach- and the Infanta Cristina promenade –along the Levante or La Fossa beach. The Prince of Asturias Promenade is situated at the foot of the Peñón de Ifach, bordering the southern slope.
Altea, our next stop, is located 10 kms from here (N-332), a bohemian village atmosphere living and breathing art and culture round every corner.
The Old Town stands out: the Portal Vell will tell us that we are in the walled enclosure. On Costera dels Matxos you will see the Fundación Scholter (Scholter Foundation) exhibiting paintings. You should also pay a visit to "El Palau" a beautiful modern concert hall, also containing the Museum of World Musical Instruments. Go up the Calle Mayor (Main Street) and admire the cobbled and stepped streets, and the balconies with their wrought iron balustrades.
Before you know it, you have arrived at the outstanding Plaza de la Iglesia de la Virgen del Consuelo (Church of the Virgin of Consolation square). A typical Mediterranean atmosphere fills this charming part of the town, with the church of the Virgin of Consolation crowned with unusual blue and white tiled domes.The Craft Fair is held from 7.30 pm until midnight during the summer season and at Easter, with stalls selling glass objects, puppets, hand made gold jewellery, silver, leatherware, etc. Beside the square you can enjoy magnificent views.
Continue your walk, going down the Calle Costera del Mestre de la Música towards the Paseo del Mediterráneo promenade, where you will find lovely gardens and a wide selection of cafés, restaurants, and shops – in fact everything to help you enjoy a gentle stroll.
There are other very interesting places around this area that you may wish to visit on another day: for example, the "Villa Gadea Museum" , the village of Altea La Vella and the Sierra de Bèrnia mountain, also accessible from Altea. How to get there. Taking the road to Altea La Vella you will find the Villa Gadea, a UNESCO International Centre, 3 kms. from Altea.
After visiting the "Villa Gadea" go on to the Caserío de Altea La Vella, situated at the foot of the Sierra de Bérnia mountain. This hamlet is welll-known for its typical village houses clustering together around the church.
Not far from Altea la Vella , on the main road to Callosa d'Ensarrià, a side turning will take you up to the summit of the Sierra de Bérnia mountain, to the Fort de Bernia (ruins of an old castle), to the fuente del Runar (Runar Waterfall) and to the Forat, a needle of rock through which you pass to the north side of the mountain. Hiking is very popular in this area. There is also a special picnic area for the use of visitors.