Hotels / Spain Travel
Guide / Valencian Community Travel
& Accommodation Guide
The capital city of the Baix
Vinalopo District as well as the second largest city of the Alicante Province,
Elche is a charming tourist destination, situated within the Valencian
Autonomous Community, in the Costa Blanca Spanish region. Elche has a prosperous
history dating back to the times of Iberian, and hence it is home to a
plethora of historical sites.
as the ‘The City of Palms,’ Elche is much famed for its expansive palm
tree grove, also known as the Palmeral of Elche, which is credited to be
the only Palm forest in Europe, consisting of over 10,000 palm trees, of
which majority of them are date palms. Covering an area of more than 3.5
sq km, the grove is believed to have been planted by the Phoenicians during
the 6th century BC, although cultivated and designed by the Moors between
8th and 13th century. Most spectacular of the forest’s sight is the Imperial
Palm, boasting seven stems and taking after the shape of a Candelabra.
Further, many of the areas within the grove have now been developed into
beautiful gardens and parks. Another interesting thing regarding this grove
is that it is still watered by the irrigation system of the River Vinalopó,
devised during the 10th century. The forest has been now declared as a
World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.
Equally fabulous is the Mystery
Play of Elche, which is conducted annually. Declared as the masterpiece
of the Oral and Intangible Heritage in 2001 by the UNESCO, the play is
a sacred cum lyrical program dating back to the 15th century. Further,
it is the only proof of the medieval religious European theatre.
Apart from these, Elche boasts
a continuum of museums, such as the Municipal Festa Museum, Pucol Agricultural
Museum, and La Alucida, all of them housing a range of rare artifacts.
Popular among the city’s monuments are Torre de la Calahorra, Basilicca
de Santa Maria, Town Hall, and Torre de Calendura. In addition, excellent
options are available for nature as well as wildlife lovers, such as El
Honda Nature Park and Clot de Galvany.
Attractions in Elche also
cover some fabulous white beaches like La Marina, El Carabassi, L’ Altet,
Arenals del Sol, and El Penet, each of them coupled with excellent facilities
for a range of water sport activities. Further, Elche hosts a variety of
fiestas, including Palm Sunday, The Hallelujas, Fiestas of the Virgin’s
Arrival, and Nit de l’Alba.
Besides being home to a range
of stunning as well as historically significant places, Elche is one of
the leading producers of footwear in Europe.
The city’s gastronomy is
usually Mediterranean in style, al though a continuum of restaurants serving
international cuisine such as Valencian, European, and Spanish can be seen
Elche is within easy reach
of almost all popular tourist destinations in Costa Blanca. For instance,
Elche is only an hour’s drive from Alicante, which is at its northwest
and half an hour drive from Benidorm – one of the most prominent tourist
resorts across the shorelines of the Costa Blanca.