May 2008 Archive

Spanish Property Market

The Spanish property market has been experiencing difficult times over the past couple of years and many Estate agents have gone out of business and many more are set to follow. The exchange rates for sterling are at an all time low against the euro and predicted to get worse. Some are saying one for one over the next twelve months. At that time the UK will probably join the euro if it’s not already been orchestrated!

The doom and gloom of the British economy is having a negative effect on everything, especially the spanish property market that was once booming. There are still people buying property in Spain but the trend seems to be people leaving the UK and selling up to seek a new life. It’s understandable, especially with the recent events with the new PM Gordon Brown and his crew.

Some of the property prices here are reflecting a bad situation and those who need to sell are reducing there prices accordingly. There are a few good deals to be had if you know what you are doing. It’s certainly the time to buy and have recently seen an influx of private investors swooping up some of the worthwhile deals to be had. Some are not worth having if it’s a fast profit you want!

Finding the right property is a very time consuming task and most people simply do not have the time , let alone the expertise , in finding the best deals and a property worth investing in.

There are areas in Spain that should be avoided mainly due to the mass developments that have been allowed along the coast, many of which continue to cause financial problems for the investors and more recently the short sighted developers who built them!

To shop smart, you really need an expert property finder that is well versed in such a task and can fast track you to the best deals worth seeing.

Here is a general property link

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Posted by on Saturday 31st May 2008

Caves at Vall d'Ebo

A beautiful day out can be enjoyed in the mountains just 30 kilometres from Denia. Take the road to Pego, off the N 332, and from there continue towards Val d’Ebo, a beautiful winding road, passing the ravines of la Canya and l’Infern.

On arrival at the village you can visit the marvelous cave “Cova del Rull”, with its spectacular stalactites, stalagmites and rocks.

Visiting hours: April – September, fron 10.20 a.m. to 8.30 p.m. November – 14th January from 11.00 a.m. to 5.00.p.m. 16th February – March and October from 11.00 a.m. to 6.30 p.m.

Entry tickets will be sold until 40 minutes before the daily closure. The cave will be closed on December 25th and January 1st and from 15th January to 15th February.

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Posted by on Friday 30th May 2008

Turron Museum

An interesting day out is a visit to the Turron Museum at Jijona. This can be enjoyed in conjunction with taking friends or relatives back to the airport at Alicante or just as a day out.

Just north of Alicante on the A7 take the N340 which will take you to Jijona, approximately 24 kilometres from Alicante. The museum is in Carretera Jijona-Busot, km 1 and is open from 10.0 a.m. to 1.0.p.m. and from 4.0 p.m. to 7.0 p.m. Mondays to Saturdays and from 10 a.m. to 1.0 p.m. and 5.0 p.m. to 7.0 p.m. Sundays and Festival days.

The museum is a private institution showing the technology related to the making of turron and marzipan. This was a very important activity during the XXth century but its roots date back to the Middle Ages.

The museum has three floors, the top floor displays the raw materials used, the middle floor shows the processes of making the turron and the lower floor the commercialization of the product.

Visits are carried out in the company of a guide. Brochures are available in several languages.

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Posted by on Friday 30th May 2008

Guided Tours in Denia

There are various guided tours in Denia, free of charge at certain times of the year.

One is a walk through Denia and the Castle. This tour lasts for two hours and can be reserved before departure, telephone 96 642 23 67. Entrance to the castle is €1.55 for adults, 75 centimos for children.

Another walk is through the Parc Natural del Montgo, leaving from the entrance of the market of Yorrecremada at 9.0 a.m., reservations can be made for a maximum of 20 places, telephone 96 642 32 05 or 679 196 461.

There is also a tour of the Fallas on the 17th and 18th March only, maximum 30 places, telephone 96 642 23 67.

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Posted by on Friday 30th May 2008

Walking in Denia

Stroll by the water’s edge!

This walk is a delightful flat stroll along the coast in Denia. A very pleasant way to travel to Denia is by train which travels from Benidorm, stopping at Altea, Calpe, Benissa, Teulada, Gata and La Xara.

When you arrive at Denia, walk towards the coast, just a hundred yards or so and turn right, walking south until you arrive at the fork, the right hand fork continues towards Javea. Take the left hand fork and turn left at any of the lanes on the left which will take you to the sea.

Here you can continue walking along the water’s edge for about a mile and there are a couple of restaurants and bars along the way. The whole return walk from the station is approximately four miles.

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Posted by on Tuesday 27th May 2008

Javea International Festival

very year there is an International Festival held in Javea and this year it is from the 12th to the 14th June. There are representatives from Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and others, also Holland, France, Ireland, Germany, Morocco and Canada.

The festival began 13 years ago in order to promote the integration of the many nationalities that live in this area. Now 27 countries participate.
There will be theatre groups, jazz bands, ethnic music, rock music and many others.

On Saturday there will also be activities for children, with workshops and games.

On Thursday night there will be a spectacular procession of the Moors and Christians, followed by popular rock/pop band Dark Horse.

On Friday there will be EnDanza, music from Hungary and Uruguay, followed by singer Niko Costello and on Saturday the finale will be jazz and the Ciutat Big Band.

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Posted by on Tuesday 27th May 2008

Costa Blanca Entertainment

For anyone visiting or living in the area between Denia and Calpe there are very many varied types of entertainment and below are listed just a few:

Castle Theatre, Denia.

This theatre group perform many plays at the Castle Theatre but on 31st May they are performing at the Town Hall Theatre in Rafol de Almunia. There will be two one-act plays, the first called Golf War Widows, – 3 golf widows at the 19th hole, discussing their lives. The second play is called Outrageous Pleasure, a comedy about a Shakespeare play in the Park. Tickets are €10 and are available from the Booking Office at Rafol Town Hall or call Christine on 626 201 636. The Castle Theatre Group are looking for new members.

The Javea Players

This group perform regularly in Gata, but on Monday, 9th June until Saturday, 14th June they are performing two comedies at La Micheta, next to the Ifach Golf Club, off the Moraira to Calpe road. There will also be a barbecue with wine and the inclusive price is €16.50. The two plays are called Darling You Were Wonderful and What·s For Pudding. To make reservations call 96 649 1276.

The World of Music, Calpe

On Friday, 6th June at the Casa de Cultura in Calpe there is a musical show featuring different styles, ranging from Musical Theatre to Rock and Pop and from the quiet villages of Cornwall to the carnivals of Latin America, also students from Marcia·s Dance Centre in Calpe. Tickets are €12 and are available from The Kamala Centre (Tennis Club, Calpe), The Book and Card Shop in Calpe, The Bodega, calle Las Americas, Orba, Kelly·s, La Xara and Bar 23, Jalon or call 96 558 1483.

International Moraira Music Festival

This will take place on the stage by the castle in Moraira on Sunday, 8th June at 18.45 hours. The festival will be part of the Moraira Moors and Christians Fiesta Celebrations.

The bars and restaurants that surround the castle have outside terraces with reserved seating or bring your own seat. Should it rain the concert could be delayed or cancelled.

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Posted by on Tuesday 20th May 2008

Moors and Christians

The fiesta of the Moors and Christians is one of the most spectacular throughout the whole of Spain and is celebrated at different times in different towns and villages.

The Moors ruled Spain for seven hundred years from the 8th to the 15th century and the fiesta celebrates the re-conquest of Spain by the Christians.

The fiesta is celebrated in Moraira in June and this year it will be held on the 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th June. On the first day there are processions along the streets with bands and orchestras and fancy dress. On Friday, a mock battle is staged when the Christians reconquer the town and this is held on the Ampolla beach with the Moors and Christians in magnificent costumes. There is much shooting and fighting and is well worth seeing.

On Saturday there will be processions in the streets with flower displays and fancy dress.

On Sunday, the final day there is the most fantastic and spectacular procession in the evening, beginning around 19.00 hours and lasting for two to three hours. Seats are provided in the streets for which a nominal charge is made.

The costumes are out of this world and cost many thousands of euros. Usually there are horsemen, sometimes camels, gym displays and floats and many other attractions. When the procession is ended there is a magnificent firework display ovder the beach.

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Posted by on Wednesday 14th May 2008

Medieval Show in Alfaz

Entertainment for all the family. There is a beautiful castle at Alfaz which gives spectacular medieval shows with jousting and many attractions, including dinner. One child goes free with each family.

The castle is situated off the N332 on the left hand side driving towards Benidorm.

For further information and reservations telephone 902 99 54 26

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Posted by on Wednesday 14th May 2008

Calpe Attractions

The town of Calpe on the Costa Blanca has many attractions, the first one being the Ifach Rock.

This is the smallest Natural Park on the Mediterranean and it is possible to climb it.

This walk takes approximately two hours and the trail starts in El Aula de la Naturaleza, which houses an exhibition hall exploring the protected natural spaces and displaying specimens of flora and fauna from the park itself.

The path to the summit is bordered by lavender, pine trees and other shrubs.

The route passes by the remains of an ancient wall rebuilt in the 14th century and continues on to a tunnel which cuts through the rock and opens up on the north east side.

There are some glorious beaches and coves in and around Calpe, some of the rocks form sculptural figures and also here are archaeological sites.

Just below the rock there is the fish auction and port and if you visit this area in the afternoon you will see the fishing boats coming in with their catch and unloading, ready to start the fish auction at 5.0 p.m. You can watch the auction from a special walkway. There is a screen which shows information on each crate of fish with its lot number, the type of fish, the weight and the starting price, which is gradually lowered until a buyer presses the Purchase button and stops the process.

Just behind the fish auction all the fishing nets are lined out to dry in the sun and behind this again are several fish restaurants, all vying for your custom. They are all very competitive and a very good three course meal, including wine can be bought for as little as €8.50 plus VAT.

The centre of Calpe is a long street starting at the sea and climbing to the top, with many shops, cafes and restaurants and the old town at the top on the left hand side also has many tapas bars and restaurants.

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Posted by on Wednesday 14th May 2008

Pinos Walk

For a delightful walk of 9 kilometres this one takes some beating. Drive to Benissa and at the end of the village on the N 332 in the direction of Calpe you will see on the right hand side a fork road signposted Jalon. Take this road and when you reach the T junction cross straight over towards Pinos.

This road is a little winding and there are spectacular views of the Calpe rock. When you reach the village of Pinos drive past the restaurant on the right hand side and cross the bridge. You can park here.

There is a right hand fork, take this road and it is a gentle ascent for approximately 3 kilometres. You pass the Iris gardens on the left after about one and a half kilometres and continue through the pleasant valley of Marnes.

At the top of the valley, you will see some farm houses called Partida del Cao. Follow the track on the right hand side for about two hundred yards and when you see the red painted sign on the left take the narrow track which climbs to the top between two peaks.

At the top there is a plateau which is a lovely spot for a picnic. Here there are splendid views of Calpe rock and the sea. From here cross to the other side and turn right with the mountain on your left and follow the track for about 2 kilometres. You will see splendid views on your right looking down to where you have walked.

After the 2 kilometres take a sharp right, almost a U bend and continue on this track which will bring you back to the same road you came on.

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Posted by on Saturday 10th May 2008

Adventure Park in Orba

There is an adventure park in Orba, next to the garage, which has many attractions.

There is a high rope pathway, archery, facial fancy dress, paint ball, shooting, and many other attractions. The entrance fee is €30 and for more information telephone 96 558 4451.

To reach Orba from Moraira, drive to Teulada and on to the N 332, through Benissa and just north of Benissa take the right fork signposted Jalon, continue through Jalon and Alkalali and You will see the Orba signpost.

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Posted by on Saturday 10th May 2008

Corpus Christi

The fiesta of Corpus Christi is held on the 25th May in the square of the Town Hall in Teulada.

There will be a procession with traditional dancers in the Historical Centre of Teulada, commencing at 19.30 hours and from 18.00 hours there will be foliage and flowers in the streets.

This is organised by the Church of Santa Catalina.

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Posted by on Saturday 10th May 2008

Library in Moraira

There is a library in the new town hall, the Espai La Senieta building, and it does have some English books.

It is open Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10.0 – 13.00 hours and on Mondays and Fridays from 16.30 – 19.30 hours. It is closed on fiesta days. Their telephone number is 96 649 0976.

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Posted by on Friday 9th May 2008

Moraira Excursions 4x4

There is a company which organises excursions by land rover to all sorts of interesting venues.

The land rover is totally equipped and insured and there are many routes, some with the option to spend a night in a casa rural. There is a guide, lunch, drinks, photos and video of the day and the trips visit mountain villages, lakes and many interesting places.

For more information telephone 600 759 041

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Posted by on Friday 9th May 2008

Walk to the Lookout Tower above El Portet

To walk to the tower above El Portet drive to the car park at El Portet and walk down towards the beach. Just before you reach the beach there is a turning on the left hand side, take this road and follow the S.L. (local pathway signs).

These local walks are shown with S.L. and do not exceed 10 kilometres. They have two stripes, one white and one green and indicate both the location and the direction of pathways.

Where the path divides in two continue towards “Cova de la Sendra”. Here there is a steep slope, do not leave this path as it is a protected area for flora. There is a variety of shrubs and plants, rosemary, heather, esparto grass etc. all of which must be respected.

At the end of this steep slope we reach a flat area where the pathway divides in two, to the left it descends towards the “Cova de la Sendra”, a steep slope. To the right the path continues on a plain towards the “Torre Vigia” (look out tower).

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Posted by on Friday 9th May 2008

Tabarca Island

The island of Tabarca is the largest inhabited island in the Valencian Community. There is a daily service in May, leaving Alicante at 11.0 a.m. and returning from Tabarca at 17.00. The return fare is €17. During the summer months there are more services. Details can be obtained from Empresa Kontiki on 96 521 6396 or if you wish to leave from Santa Pola the you can telephone Cruceros Baeza Parodi on 608 330 422.

The island is 11 miles south east of Alicante and only three miles from the cape in Santa Pola. It is 1,800 metres long and 400 meters wide. It is a beautiful place for a weekend or a day trip. The trip takes 60 minutes from Alicante and only 30 minutes from Santa Pola.

The island dates back to the XVIII century. In 1741 the king of Tunisia invaded the island and took as his prisoners the people living there, who happened to be Genoese, but later became the prisoners of the Sultan of Argelia. In 1768, Carlos III, king of Spain paid a fee and freed them. They stayed on to make the island a military lookout, especially from the pirates who used the island to attack the Costa Blanca.

In the centre of the island is a beautiful hotel which used to be the Governors house. The area was declared a Protected Historic Artistic monument in 1964. In 1986 the island was declared a Protected Marine Reserve, covering over 1,400 hectares. There are all sorts of water activities allowed within this area. Fishing can be done with the correct permits. Scuba diving and collecting of flora or fauna is prohibited, as also are motor boats.

The island is one of the best places to sample various fish dishes.

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Posted by on Friday 9th May 2008

New Ice Rink in Benidorm

Ice World Spain has now opened an ice rink at the La Noria (water wheel) shopping centre on Avenida de Europa.

There are special prices for parties, groups, birthdays, etc. It is also planning future ice hockey events for children and lessons for indivuals and groups. The cost of a two hour session, including skate hire is 7.50 euros per person.

There is also a terrace serving drinks and snacks and there are parking facilities below the ice rink.

For bookings telephone 615 361 178.

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Posted by on Friday 9th May 2008

Modern Jive Classes

Modern Jive classes for beginners is beginning on Tuesday, 13th May at the Bar Mediterraneo, Teulada and the opening night is free.

The classes will be held every Tuesday, from 8.0 p.m. for a two hour lesson and practice and the cost after 13th May will be €5.

Absolute beginners are welcome and partners are not necessary but are welcome.

The Bar Mediterraneo is on the dual carriageway near the bottom on the left hand side driving from Moraira.

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Posted by on Wednesday 7th May 2008

Aqualandia Benidorm

There is the most fantastic water adventure playground in Benidorm called Aqualandia.

From Moraira take the A7 motorway in the direction of Alicante and exit at the junction marked Levante Beach.

Follow the signs and when you reach Benidorm Palace on the right hand side you will see the sign to Aqualandia on the left.

This opens at Easter. If you visit the Tourist Office in Moraira you can pick up a leaflet which offers discounts of €5 for adults or €3 for a child.

There are 3 shows, sea lions, dolphins and parrots. There are penguins, and other animals, there is the opportunity to swim with sea lions and a fantastic big bang water shute.

Another attraction which is new this year is the biggest jacuzzi in Europe. There is also a beautiful pool with waterfall, and a series of slides, plus a funny jungle.

There are also cafes and restaurants.

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Posted by on Wednesday 7th May 2008

Cliff Walk to Cala Moraig

This is a short walk following the cliff path and is extremely picturesque. To begin the walk, drive towards Cumbre de Sol. Leaving Moraira and driving towards Benitachell can reach this.

Drive to the crossroads in Benitachell, turn right in the direction of Javea and about 100 yards down on the right hand side there is a right fork which will take you to Cumbre de Sol. Just before you reach the beach at Cumbre de Sol there is a sign on the right hand side pointing to Cala de Moraig.

Just a little further on you can park your car and walk back to the path. There is a sign with information about the route.

Just follow the footpath, which wends its way along to the bay with the sea on your left. The way down to the beach is a little steep so take care.

Along the path there are signs S.L. These signs indicate that the walks do not exceed 10 kilometers and have two stripes, one white and one green, which indicate the location and direction of pathways.

The object is to recover the routes, which run through the heart of nature, following old paths, which, in the past, were the communication between places and towns.

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Posted by on Wednesday 7th May 2008

Iris Gardens and Labyrinth

A delightful couple of hours can be spent by visiting the Iris Gardens and Labyrinth. These are situated on the road to Marnes. To reach them from Moraira drive to Teulada and turn left at the junction on to the N 332, drive through Benissa and take the right fork at the end of the village signposted Jalon.

When you reach the T junction cross over towards Pinos and 1 kilometre past Pinos there is a blue bridge. Take the right fork and the Gardens are about two kilometres up on the right hand side. The entire drive takes about 45 minutes.

These gardens are only open for six weeks every year from mid-April to the end of May and are free. There are approximately 5,000 iris, 100 different hybrids, a riot of colour, also a few other plants, such as sweet peas and lavender but mainly iris.

You can buy the plants and the advantage is that you see them in flower before buying. The whole garden is pesticide free and the owners inform me that they never water the plants. The telephone number of the gardens is 96 597 3520.

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Posted by on Wednesday 7th May 2008

Excursions and Boat Trips

Along the coast of the Costa Blanca there are various boat trips

From 21st March onwards Return fares:

Denia 9.15 a.m. 14.15 Denia/Javea €15.00 Javea 10.0 a.m. 17.00 Denia/Calpe €20 Calpe 11.l5 a.m. 18.15 Denia/Altea €15 Altea 12.00 a.m. 19.00 Javea/Altea €20 Calpe 12.30 19.30 Calpe/Altea €12 Javea 13.30 20.00 Denia 14.00 21.00 Children 4 – 10 years 50%

Catamaran trips.

Denia Javea Calpe Altea Return fares: 9.15 10.0 11.15 12.00 Denia/Altea €30
16.15 17.00 18.15 19.00 Denia/Calpe €25 Denia/Javea €15 Altea Calpe Javea Denia Javea/Calpe €20
12.00 12.45 13.45 14.15 Javea/Altea €25 19.00 19.45 20.45 21.15 Calpe/Altea €12

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Posted by on Wednesday 7th May 2008

Bioparc Valencia

There is a new Safari Park opened in Valencia which is probably as near to Africa as you can get without going there. It begins at the river bed at Campanar where there is a new white bridge across the lake and there are boats shaped like swans which families can enjoy. Across the bridge the area looks like an African Safari and there are paths leading to different animal enclosures.

In the first area there are zebras, rhinos and ostriches living as if in the wild and the whole area is full of large rocks, red dust on the ground and masses of foliage including acacia trees.

The Bioparc is as open as possible with animals walking round the visitors. The area is very safe as there are deep moats to stop the animals charging and escaping.

The bird enclosure is full of African birds, including the guinea ford and hamerkop.

There are giraffes, flamingos, lions, hippos, water hogs and in the caves are tortoises, scorpions and lots more.

There are also picnic areas, cafes with thatched roofs and here you are at the water·s edge.

The Biopar is open Mondays to Fridays from 10.00 – 17.30 and weekends from 10.00 – 18.30. The telephone number is 902 250 340

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Posted by on Wednesday 7th May 2008