Calpe – Climate and landscape
Calpe is situated in the northern region of Valencia, Costa Blanca. This area has an average daily temperature of 20 degrees, reaching up to 40 degrees in the summer and 12 degrees in the winter.
The local climate is known to boost health. Furthermore there is the large salt lake situated in the centre, which is believed to have many beneficial properties including improving breathing problems and reducing asthma. The high concentrations of salt in the air, circulating through Calpe provides a natural air filter creating a healthy microclimate. You will find flamingos and other beautiful birds on and around the lake and if you fancy a stroll there are walkways surrounding it.
Calpe rests on the foot of the Sierra Bernia mountain range. The coastline is surrounded by blond sandy beaches with crystal clear light blue seas. There are dramatic rock outcrops portraying the history of this area, a now dormant volcanic region, responsible for the soils fertility and breathtaking scenery. Calpe also falls onto a small peninsula, with a volcanic rock the ‘Ifach’ at its outmost point and most pictured landmark, which is now a recognized nature reserve. As you approach Calpe from Alicante you will drive through spectacular mountainous roads and further North of Calpe you can follow the winding coastal roads which are regarded as the ‘Spanish Riviera’.
Calpe – Cuisine
You will also find Calpe a great place to indulge in the Spanish cuisines. There is a vast variety of colourful dishes, such as tapas, seafood & paellas. Weekly markets bring to light the high quality of food produce for very reasonable costs.
There is a large fishing port with a lively fish market next to the marina which supplies daily fresh catches to the many seafood restaurants throughout the town. In addition to all the seafood restaurants there are Italian, French, German, Greek restaurants and US styled steak houses. ‘Menu del dia’s’ are set menu’s for very low prices and offer a more favourable option, for around ten Euros’ you will find a starter, main, dessert, half bottle of wine and bread to accompany. Local Cervesa’s and Vino’s add to the culinary delight of meals out or delightfully priced refreshment after strolls around this historic town. Why not try one of the many cocktails on offer along the sea front and enjoy the lovely warm evenings, nightlife and varied entertainment that Calpe enchants with.
Calpe – Festivities
Calpe has many Spanish Festivals throughout the year. These include week-long precessions through the old town celebrating Easter, the famous Bull Run in the summer, Moors and Christians Parade late October and Octoberfest in the autumn and finishing the year with Christmas parades through the old town. There are regular Fiesta’s and organized outdoor entertainment in the local squares in the summer months and in the Casa de Cultura the outdoor theatre, (see picture opposite) they hold many shows and evening entertainment from local bands, musicians and much more there are also plenty of fireworks displays and parades that take place. You can find the dates from visiting one of the Tourist Information offices around Calpe. All ages play a part in every festivity bringing together families across the area.
The Bull Run
Held in the ‘old town’ in early August is a week-long festival not to be missed. A spectacular fireworks display starts the week’s events held on the sandy beaches of Calpe. There are two bull runs in Calpe, which occur three times in the evening throughout the week. The first Bull Run involves a group of six to seven bulls charging through fenced cobbled streets, past bars and doorways for half an hour or so. The fences provide a safety barrier for onlookers and security for the ‘matadors’ jumping out of the way! The first run can be experienced by the faint hearted – a taster but entertaining non-the less. The second route Bull Run involves individual bulls charging up and down a different street, which is lined with vertical barred cages. Young children and families sit on tiers above the cages. People who wish to have a closer experience watch from within the cages and often dart in and out to see where the bull is and retreat back into the cages when the bull is seen approaching. The tradition is that bravery is shown by anyone who faces the bull, receiving loud cheers. However caution is needed at all times as this can be quite dangerous you need to stand well back in the cages and be aware of the bulls presence at all times.
The Moore’s & Christians Festival
This is held in mid October in the evening and is a massive parade stretching through the main high street ‘Gabriel Miro’. Over three hours with varieties of dance groups and marvelous costumes, bands, floats and other surprises light up the town – a joyful, colourful display, where thousands of locals come out to enjoy the evening. Following the parade the next day the festivities continue onto the beach where you will see traditional costumes, reenactment and hear gunfire, which then slowly heads up into the old town enveloping you into Spanish tradition.
Calpe – Exploring the Local Area
Calpe is a great place to explore. As well as being a popular holiday destination you will find Calpe a very clean place. Both the town and the beach are cleaned every evening, maintaining the beauty of the area. The town centre is busy with people shopping, dining or relaxing in cafes and bars. Further up the high street you will find yourself walking into the old town of Calpe. Walking around is delightful through the mazes of narrow streets, sand coloured buildings, amazing architecture, painted murals. You will also find many unique bars and more traditional Spanish restaurants offering delicious Spanish Cuisine and large selections of wines and drinks. Prices are very reasonable throughout. The locals are always friendly and enjoy giving advice. Don’t be shy to chat to the locals – a great way to pick up a bit of Spanish and learn
new things about Calpe.
Calpe is just twenty minutes away from Benidorm – far enough to get away from all the hustle and bustle but near enough for a trip or two. There are trains and buses directly from Calpe to Benidorm, renowned for its nightlife, activities and shopping. Day trips include Aqualandia the water park, Terra Mitica the famous theme park and Benidorm Palace for spectacular evening shows. If you prefer to indulge yourself more into the Spanish way of life you can take a visit to Altea, Denia, Moraira and Jevea which are neighbouring towns of Calpe, full of history, cobbled streets, murals, great restaurants, historic buildings, beautiful beaches and breathtaking views.
Calpe – Activities and sports
There are plenty of excursions and activities in Calpe covering an array of sports.Local water-sports offered include scuba, snorkeling, paddle boarding, kite surfing, jet-skiing, sailing, cave excursions via speed boat, fishing excursions, catamaran sunset sailing with Champagne, snorkeling and water canyoning. Dry sports include golf, tennis, cycling, quad biking, abseiling, rock climbing, horse riding, mountain walks and dry canyoning.
You could hire a moped or rent a car and take a short drive to Fonts de l’Algar – a series of stunning blue waterfalls, followed by lunch and a swim in the restaurants pools nearby, and then go on to visit any one of the beautiful surrounding towns.
Calpe is a great place for cycling. From January to April hundreds of cyclists come from all over Europe both professional and amateur to train. There are many varieties of routes from strenuous mountains to more scenic. There is also a large Tennis Centre, which offers Tennis Coaching and within these grounds they have a large outdoor pool and a restaurant serving food and drinks.
If you are feeling brave enough you can have a go at rock climbing and try climbing the Ifach, which is 332m height and on a clear day you can see Ibiza. Although the first stage of the climb up to the tunnel is exhilarating and will take just over an hour, the views over Calpe on the way up are spectacular, however be careful as the second stage of the climb involves a path above the tunnel which has no safety features and can be very slippery. It is not recommended for children, the elderly or for people who are unfit.
There are also 2 main beaches in Calpe the Levante Beach and the Arenal Beach which are both separated by the Ifach Rock, these beaches are well maintained and the sea is crystal clear, you will also find in August there is hardly a space left as this is the Spanish Holidays and both beaches are completely full with a stunning array of different sun umbrellas, quite amazing to see, you will also find the restaurants packed to the brim and Calpe turns into a very busy town with a wonderful holiday atmosphere and many things going on throughout the day and night.
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