Calpe: Memorable experience north of Alicante
Calpe is the ideal vacation destination on Spains Costa Blanca along the Mediterranean Sea. This beautiful, small village is only a short twenty minute drive to the very popular vacation hotspot of Benidorm. Some have called Calpe by its name Calpe to reflect its tall, jagged-edge rock while the Phoenicians called the town Ifach meaning north. Ultimately, the entire town of Calpe was known as the north craggy rock with Gibraltar as its most southern point. It is located north of Altea and south of Denia and took advantage of its prime location along the coast when it inducted its first hotel. Celebrities, such as Hemingway, have been known to stay at the hotel.
Once you are in Calpe, you will note that the beautiful beach is not its main attraction but rather the Penon de Ifach, the steep rock formation referred to above. The Penon de Ifach is one of Spains smallest natural parks. It was declared a natural park in 1987 due to its three hundred types of vegetation and colonies of birds in need of protection from this small fishing villages rapid growth. The park is about thirty-five hectares in size and has a beautiful landscape. The martin birds, silver seagull and plants unique to this park are closely protected due to their close call with extinction. The top of this rock formation provides an unforgettable view of the Costa Blanca, though not everyone will feel comfortable nor capable of climbing to the top. You can reach the top by changing directions in a zig-zag pattern as well as utilizing a tunnel built in 1918. Admission to the park is free, but note that during Easter week and the summer season you must obtain a ticket due to a limited number of people who can go up each hour. If you have always wanted to try mountain climbing, climbing the Penon de Ifach is definitely something you will want to try as it is a breathtaking view and experience.
If your travel plans to Calpe included catching a flight to the Valencia airport, you will have approximately a sixty-five mile (105 kilometers) drive to the town of Calpe. If your flight takes you to the Alicante airport, your trip to Calpe will be significantly shorter at approximately thirty-eight miles (61 kilometers). Regardless of the airport you choose, you can use the National Highway N-332 which is no charge to use or the A-7 Pay Highway which is a much safer and faster drive. The bus service from either airport is also a transportation option in reaching Calpe.
As in all areas in the Costa Blanca, there are many accommodation types from which to choose. For nature lovers or those with a limited budget, camping or basic hotels may be the way to go. Clean, economical hotels costing about 45 euros would cost about 80 euros directly by the Penon de Ifach with beach front hotels costing up to 150 euros.