This traditional Spanish coastal town has a towering rock as its landmark and is a relaxing destination to enjoy soft-sand beaches, scenic trails and ancient ruins.
Visit historic sites or enjoy a cruise from the marina during your visit to Calpe, a small town on the coast of southern Spain. If you are feeling active, climb up the town’s landmark, the towering Ifach rock (Penon de Ifach), and hike through the surrounding national park. Calpe has a beautiful beach, so dive in to cool off after sightseeing.
The strategic location of Calpe, or Calp to the locals, has attracted human civilization as far back as the Bronze Age. The Romans used the distinctive Ifach rock, which stands out from the Calpe Peninsula, as a lookout when they set up camp here.
To get to the rock, walk through the town and follow the signs to Ifach National Park. Climb 1,090 feet (332 meters) to the rock’s peak for spectacular views, which are most stunning at sunset and sunrise. If you are driving, note that the park is not open to cars at night.
Kayaking or sailing tours and other boat cruises that leave daily from the Calpe marina are alternative ways to admire the rock and coastline.
Delve into Spanish history with a visit to the ruins of the Queen’s Baths (Los Baños de Reina) from Roman times. Other heritage sites are the old Torre de Moli flourmill, built on top of a former watchtower, and Calpe’s Gothic church.
Join the locals for a meal at the Fossa o Levante beach with its promenade full of cafés, bars and restaurants. You might see sand sculptors at work, creating intriguing art works for all to admire. If you happen to be visiting in August, catch a cheap open-air movie show at night.
Venture beyond the township and visit the free Cactus Garden with its collection of 1,000 species. The attraction is located 5 miles (8 kilometers) towards Altea on the coastal road from Calpe to Benidorm.
Calpe, in the province of Alicante, is situated northeast of Benidorm, about 30-40 minutes away by car. You can also reach Calpe by bus, train or boat.