PANTANO DE ELCHE – COSTA BLANCA
The Elche dam known as the “Pantano de Elche” was built in the 17th century on the Vinalopó River as a means of retaining its waters. It was the first dam to be built in Europe in the shape of a vault, and is even considered to be the first arch shaped dam built since Roman times. Today it has become a popular trekking route for nature lovers, as the ambience is tranquil and picturesque with waterfalls, lakes, wooden bridges and local wildlife. The walking route has sign posts to guide you along the trail and there is a parking area with picnic areas, to relax, have a snack and continue enjoying the views after your walk. The best place to park up and start is at Aparcamiento Pantano de Elche, 03205 Elche. Tel: 966 658 751 www.pantanodeelche.es
EL HONDO NATURAL PARK – ELCHE
The protected nature reserve of El Hondo is located on the border of Elche and Crevillente where the rivers Rio Vinalopó and Rio Segura channel together to form a great natural lagoon. El Hondo landscape is dominated by reeds, ponds and an abundance of wildlife such as different species of birds, ducks and flamingos. With various walkways and shaded observational spots along the route, you will comfortably get to know the reserve, appreciate some bird watching, and experience spectacular sunsets. El Hondo natural park has a picnic area and a visitors information centre with walking route suggestions, giving you the chance to discover as much of the park as you like at your own pace. Parking and route starting point: Finca el Rincón 03158 Crevillent Tel: 966 678 515
PARQUE DEL MOLINO DEL AGUA – LA MATA
Parque del Molino del Agua is a hidden gem of Torrevieja and makes a spectacular walking route on the Costa Blanca. The park gets its name from the original Water Mill (Molino del Agua) that was used years ago in the production of salt. This simple walking route starts at the Queen Mississippi Restaurant and ends up at La Mata beach, where you can continue a beautiful walk along the seafront to the town of La Mata. Parque del Molino del Agua is laid out with pathways running alongside a picturesque waterfall, and there are shaded seating areas along the way to take rest or enjoy a picnic. Parking at the start of the route can be found on Calle Morera, 03188 La Mata.
ORIHUELA COSTA PROMENADE
This extremely picturesque walking route follows the Mediterranean coastline of the Orihuela Costa and covers 16km of breathtaking views with cliffs, coves, beaches, crystal clear waters and golden sand, as well as two marinas located in Cabo Roig and Campoamor. The pathway is a mixture of paving stones, steps and promenades with resting viewpoints along the way, giving you the freedom to do as much walking as you like. The ideal route starts at Playa Flamenca beach, continues through La Zenia, Cala Capitan, Cabo Roig and ends at La Glea beach in Campoamor. This superb walking route is the perfect opportunity to discover some of the natural beauty the Costa Blanca has to offer. The Orihuela Costa walking route also has many health benefits, like energizing the body and clearing the mind as you take in the fresh sea air and admire the impressive vistas.
TORREVIEJA PIER – DIQUE DE LEVANTE
The Torrevieja Pier on the Costa Blanca coast, known as the Dique de Levante, is a beautiful and refreshing walking route with panoramic views of the Mediterranean sea. The pier is located at the start of the Torrevieja promenade where the Paseo de la Libertad and Paseo Juan Aparicio join. This picturesque walk along the Dique de Levante is just under two miles long, taking about 30 minutes to walk one way at a gentle pace. There are shaded resting spots about half way, after which the route continues until you reach the lighthouse at the end of the pier. From here you can see, on a clear day, much of the eastern Murcian coast and Cabo de Palos, and by night, experience some breathtaking sunsets. As you arrive back to the Torrevieja promenade after the walk, there are plenty of cafes, bars and restaurants on the seafront to take a well deserved rest and enjoy a drink with some tapas, whilst soaking up more amazing views of the Torrevieja coastline.
LA FONT ROJA – ALCOY
The Natural Park of La Font Roja in Alcoy is one of the most beautiful landscapes in the Valencian region. Across more than two thousand hectares of untouched natural beauty, you can enjoy a picturesque and peaceful hiking trail. The park is home to a varied and abundant plant life and wildlife, with species such as oaks, maples and pines. Autumn time brings a more authentic delight to this nature trail, with water features, vibrant colours and autumnal scents. Amongst all this, there is a large population of wild badgers and birds. It is recommended to start your walk at the Visitors Centre located in the Santuario Font Roja where you can park the car and obtain information on the different walking routes.
DUNES OF GUARDAMAR
The pine forest area in Guardamar del Segura, also known as the Dunes of Guardamar, is a natural park covering 800 hectares and was originally a vast collection of sand dunes. Over the years it has invited various plant species such as pines, palms, cypresses and eucalyptus, creating a beautifully landscaped environment of ecological, touristic and cultural appeal. As you stroll around, the aromas of the greenery alongside the fresh sea air, makes it a perfect place to unwind and disconnect. This peaceful and picturesque park which links Guardamar town centre to the coast, is an ideal location for fresh morning walks, bike rides, dog walking, or simply chilling out with a picnic. There are plenty of shaded areas, resting benches, and comfortable wooden walkways which lead out to delightful sea views. The best place to park the car is at the Reina Sofia Park, from here you’ll cross over the road and see the entrance sign to “Parque Alfonso XIII” where the route begins.
PANTANO DE RELLEU – MARINA BAIXA
The spectacular views from the footbridge of the Relleu Dam allows you to experience the magnificent rock formations and takes you on an unforgettable journey over the bed of the ravine. The 40 meter high wooden plank walkway known as the Pasarela del Pantano, has a route of 212 meters, with a daring glass floor viewpoint at the end. Relleu and its 17th century reservoir, is one of the best kept treasures of the Costa Blanca. It is situated about a 45 minute dive inland from Benidorm, in the Marina Baixa region. A typical Spanish town nestled in the hills, Relleu is surrounded by nature in an environment of great beauty and value. The route begins at the Town Hall where you will find ample free parking and information to guide you through the walk. www.relleuturismo.com
PARQUE NATURAL DE LAS SALINAS – SANTA POLA
The Natural Park of Santa Pola, located in the province of Alicante, is a picturesque, protected nature reserve with marshland, salt mines, freshwater pools, bird watching observation points, sand dunes and a beach. The park is well known for its native flamingos and 16th-century landmark watchtower. The best place to start your venture round the park is at the Salt Museum where you can pick up information on the various walking routes to take. The Salt Museum is located in the facilities of an old salt factory within the Natural Park. Here you will discover the process of extracting salt and its history, gain useful information about the park, and enjoy a special observation point to view the flamingos. Tel: 965 938 590 Museo de la Sal, Av. Zaragoza 45, 03130 Santa Pola, Alicante.