Top 10 Things To Do in Elche, Spain
Elche is a Valencian autonomous community in the southeast of Spain, once home to Greeks, Carthaginians, and Romans. This alone is a testament to the amount of history, culture, and even art that is to be found there- a city perfect for a visit. The Palm trees for which Elche is famous dot the city in many places and you just may get to taste the groves’ dates which the city exports.
Here’s a list of the top 10 things to do in Elche, Spain.
1. Placa de la Glorieta
Elche’s main square has a number of other attractions clustered together that you could see while there. At the square, the monuments from the old town stand tall- you can look at these in detail and take pictures against them. The cinemas around the area play original versions of old movies that you can enjoy.
There are plenty of cafes as well that you can retire to for a much-needed meal or drink after sightseeing, or simply sit at to enjoy the ambiance.
2. Visit the beach
The beach especially in summer is always a great idea. Sunbathe in the sun or enjoy a swim in the mostly blue waters of the beaches of Elche, which are a few kilometers from the coast- this location has gifted Elche with plenty of great beaches to choose from. Los Arenales for instance is a popular beach with white sand and blue waters that are very inviting. There are also many snack bars at most of the beaches for that much-needed snack break.
Los Arenales Del Sol is another great beach found to the north of the town of Santa Pola, it’s a long, white sandy beach is perfect for swimming, with plenty of snack bars. To the south, the beaches of El Pinet, La Marina, and Les Pesqueres-El Rebollo are also popular.
The Playa El Carabassi is another of the popular beaches you could enjoy; the wooden walkway, beach bar with food, drink, loungers, and parasols all make for a cozy stress-free day at the beach.
3. Palmeral of Elche
Elche is known to have many palm trees; this is also a source of income for the city which exports dates and fronds. A visit to El Palmeral or palm grove is a sure way to experience incomparable nature- the palm groves of Elche are not found anywhere else in Europe. Away from the Elche heat at the Palmeral of Elche, you will be able to cool down and relax as you take in nature.
The date orchards found here amount to about 97 with at least 70,000 date palms!
4. Huerto Del Cura Jardin Artistico Nacional
The atmosphere at the Huerto Del Cura Jardin Artistico Nacional is worth the trip. This garden is all things palm trees and the Mediterranean and desert plants. The maintenance of the garden is top-notch, and walking among the trees is almost therapeutic. At this garden, you can also enjoy other Spanish Mediterranean plants like lemon, pomegranate, orange, carob, and jujube trees.
Elche palms and cacti are sourced from all over the world, in as many varieties as they come in. This garden has ensured their survival by adapting them to the climate in Elche. The rare Imperial Palm can also be found here- this palm has several of its branches born out of the same trunk that gives them life! It is very symmetrical, and a beautiful looking palm.
5. Rio Safari Park Elche
This is a fun animal park in Costa Blanca whose location is enviable; it is located in an oasis where at least 4,000 palm trees grow. At the Rio Safari Park Elche, is a view of at least 100 animal species, animal shows such as sea lion shows, camel rides, feeding the animals, swimming, and many more activities, which make a visit here worthwhile. If traveling with children they would definitely have a blast here- they would especially enjoy the farm animals section which has cows, pigs, goats, horses, and sheep.
6. Museo Paleontologico de Elche
This small museum of paleontology boasts a neat collection and reconstruction of items. At the museum, you will find an informative introductory video in English that will set the tone for your visit. This museum is interactive, and while children and adults alike enjoy it, children will have the time of their lives! The replicas of dinosaurs and remains of mammoths and marine reptiles are fascinating and make for an amazing experience.
You can buy as keepsakes, natural stones, and fossils sold at the museum to take home from your trip.
7. La Cuna Teteria
Before you leave Elche, you should experience its nightlife. The La Cuna Teteria is a vibrant part of this although you can visit the bar at other times. Everything about La Cuna Teteria screams ‘hangout’. This is a special pub that sells a variety of homemade teas. As you relax you can enjoy monologues, concerts or sit quietly and enjoy your drink or hang out with friends.
8. Basilica de Santa Maria
The Basilica de Santa Maria is a sight for sore eyes! This baroque church was built over the ruins of a mosque with an ornate baroque portal and square towers making for a beautiful outlook.
Its blue dome stands out, and you can see the city’s panorama from the tower. Be prepared, however, for the 177 stairs up to reach it! The views are however totally worth it.
Take a walk to the museum of the virgin at the back of the basilica, as there is more in this area to see as well.
9. Great Theater of Elche
The good thing about visiting the ‘Gran Teatro de Elche’ is the wide variety of items on its menu- from concerts in various styles, monologues, theater, dance, poetry, recitals, and others, there is something that will appeal to you. The beautifully built theatre is portico equipped with iron gates.
If you would like more entertainment in theatre, you may catch the Mystery Play of Elche that takes place in August. This is an event in itself that happens at Basilica de Santa Maria; a play entirely sung by Elche townsfolk accompanied by extraordinary acoustics. It depicts the death of the Virgin Mary and her crowning perhaps to glory.
10. Parque Municipal
This is a well-kept park in town, mostly known as the source of palms used during Palm Sunday processions. The palms are retrieved right from the park which has a large palm tree forest. Within the park is a Palm Plaiting workshop. You can marvel at the traditional palm crafting methods in an old Arabic mill and granary building also found at the Parque Municipal.
The Park has a museum you can visit as well as an open-air theatre and a windmill.
This park by virtue of its location in the middle of town will give you a much welcome break as you enjoy the vegetation, taking in the palm groves and other palms species and flora. The fountains, small ponds, and swans are simply delightful. The park is maintained by the city council.
Charming Elche will enthrall you with its beauty, and plenty of things to do there will not afford you a moment of boredom!