Calpe in Spain: All you have to know!
Calpe, the popular holiday destination in Spain, is a real highlight in the province of Alicante. The town is particularly famous for its mighty rock, the Peñon de Ifach mountain, which shapes the landscape there and gives the beaches of the coast the particularly unique backdrop. But in addition to this natural wonder, there are other exciting things to do in Calpe. A colorful old town, picturesque beaches, pink flamingos and spectacular viewpoints are just a few of the most beautiful attractions that can be experienced here. Due to the central location, you can also be part of unforgettable excursions in the areas around Calpe and explore the most beautiful spots of the Costa Blanca.
In this travel guide we will provide you with all the important information and holiday tips for a visit to Calpe in Spain. We also show you the best attractions, the most beautiful beaches and where you find the best places to stay.
General information about Calpe
Calpe, often known as Calp, is considered one of the most popular resorts on the Costa Blanca in Spain. The fairly mild winters make the town a popular holiday destination for outdoor activities such as cycling, hiking and climbing, and the warm summers guarantee a perfect beach holiday. Calpe is most famous for the so-called Peñón de Ifach, an imposing rock in the sea that gives the resort its distinctive appearance.
The history of Calpe dates back to the Valencian Bronze Age around 1,500 BC. Later, the Romans founded the first settlement directly beneath the Calpe rock. Archaeological sites, such as Baños de la Reina can still be visited today. And the Salt Lake with the famous Calpe flamingos is said to have once served the Romans as salt pans for salt extraction.
Things to do in Calpe
During a holiday, there is a multitude of exciting things to do in Calpe and there are also a few real highlights and brilliant attractions waiting for you in the area close to Calpe. Here are the most beautiful places to visit in Calpe, summarized at a glance.
Old Town of Calpe
One of the most beautiful attractions and a must-see is the charming old town of Calpe. While strolling through the colorful city center, you will discover interesting sights at almost every corner. One of the many highlights here is the colorfully decorated staircase of the Carrer de Puchalt, but also the Plaça de la Villa and the surrounding alleys fascinate with magnificent wall mosaics and the colorful wall paintings. Also really worth seeing is the Torreó de la Peça, a well-preserved bastion from the 13th-14th centuries.
Sunbathing at Playa de la Fossa
The beautiful Playa de la Fossa is one of the most beautiful beaches in the resort. This fine sandy beach offers unique bathing pleasure in a long bay with a wonderful view of the rock Ifach, the most important landmark of Calpe. The promenade is also picturesque, where countless restaurants and cafés are lined up and where you can relax and enjoy your time.
Watch Flamingos at the Salt Lake
One of the most impressive places to visit in Calpe, which probably already dates back to Roman times, is the beautiful salt lake with its countless pink flamingos. Located in the middle of the city, this natural landscape serves as a resting place for numerous migratory birds. Visitors are amazed when they suddenly discover countless pink flamingos strolling through the water just a few meters away while they walk through Calpe.
Hike to the Peñón de Ifach
The Peñón de Ifach, a 332-meter-high limestone cliff, is located on the coast of Calpe and with only 47 hectares it is the smallest nature reserve in Spain. Thanks to its spectacular shape and breathtaking location right on the coast, it has become the ultimate symbol of the entire Costa Blanca. One of the best things to do in Calpe is to hike up to the summit of Ifach Mountain, wherefrom you can enjoy a spectacular view of the holiday resort.
Tip: A good fitness level is required for the hike to Ifach. For the quite steep tour, you should plan a total walking time of 3 hours.
Playa del Arenal-Bol
Playa del Arenal Bol is the main beach of Calpe and a real magnet for visitors, especially in the high season. Not only the fine, light sand and the crystal-clear sea are beautiful, but also the fantastic backdrop with the amazing view of the Ifach rocks is unique. Along the palm-lined 1.5 kilometers long promenade are restaurants, shops and beach bars, from which you can always enjoy a beautiful view of the uniquely beautiful Playa del Arenal-Bol beach.
Tip: Directly at Playa del Arenal-Bol is the Gran Hotel Sol y Mar, a popular Adults-Only Hotel with an infinity pool and a great view of the sea!
The picturesque port of Calpe is situated at the end of the approximately 2 km long waterfront promenade, the Paseo Infanta Elena. This includes a fishing port and a harbor for leisure boats. In a pleasant atmosphere, you can stroll past beautiful sailing boats and enjoy the view of the Ifach rocks. In the area surrounding the harbor there are some excellent fish restaurants that serve fresh seafood for affordable prices.
Mirador Monte Toix Viewpoint
The probably most brilliant viewpoint on Calpe is the Mirador Monte Toix. It is located on a hill west of the city and can be driven up to the last 400 meters by car. Once at the top, you can expect the most fascinating view of Calpe, the spectacular rock Ifach and the deep blue sea. A panorama that you will remember for a long time.
Visit to the Fish Auction
The fish auction takes place at the port of Calpe every day of the week starting at 5 p.m. You shouldn’t miss this spectacle if you spend your holiday there! It is a long tradition where local fishermen sell their fresh goods. You can watch this hustle and bustle from the viewing platform and get an impression of the traditional fish trade in Calpe.
Baños de Reina
A historically important place to visit in Calpe are the baths of the queen, the Baños de Reina. This Roman site was built between the 2nd and 4th century and then served as a royal spa. Today, you can also swim in this historic site and enjoy the crystal-clear sea. The Banos de Reina are located directly at the waterfront, around 200 meters from the end of the long Playa del Arenal Bol and can be visited free of charge.
Cala El Raco
Cala El Raco is a breathtakingly beautiful bathing bay and a real highlight in Calpe. It is located directly at the foot of the Penon Ifach rock, which gives the bay a spectacular setting. The turquoise blue sea colors are also uniquely beautiful, which together with the white round pebbles conjure up a panorama like something out of a glossy magazine. Directly behind it is the Paseo Ecológico Príncipe de Asturias, an interesting ecological nature trail that runs along the mountainside.
Excursions around Calpe
Calpe is located in the heart of the province of Alicante and is the ideal starting point to explore the beautiful Costa Blanca and the best attractions in the surrounding area:
We recommend a trip to Altea, with its snow-white old town and enchanting alleyways, which is only about 12 kilometers from Calpe.
Also exciting is a trip to Benidorm, a gigantic resort with high-rise buildings, a lively nightlife, several amusement parks and the Sierra Helada nature park.
Probably one of the most popular destinations for a day trip from Calpe is the mountain village of Guadalest, with a wonderful view of the cobalt blue lake.
Worth a trip is Villajoyosa, which enchants with a colorful old town. A day excursion to the provincial capital Alicante, 60 kilometers away, is also worthwhile.
Where to Stay in Calpe
The good range of fantastic hotels and a great choice of apartments make a holiday in Calpe perfect. Most of these accommodations are located directly on the dream beaches of the coast. If you are not yet sure which hotel to choose, we can give you these accommodation tips…It’s worth a look!
- Adults only Hotel: The Gran Hotel Sol y Mar delights its guests with its prime location directly on the beach, with a great view of the Peñon de Ifach and with a fabulous breakfast.
- 4-Star Hotel: The Suitopía – Sol y Mar Suites Hotel is the perfect hotel for the whole family. Guests love the cool Sky Lounge Bar with a 360-degree view, breakfast and fantastic facilities.
- Beautiful Apartment: The Apartamento con excelentes vistas is a beautiful and modern 2 room apartment with a view of the promenade and the rocks.
- Apartments with View: The Apartamentos Vista Bella offers apartments right at the beach with wonderful views and beautiful furniture.
Find the best accommodation in Calpe:
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