The Costa Blanca is a spectacular stretch of Mediterranean coastline, world-famous for its stunning beaches and fun-filled resorts. But there’s much more to this beautiful Spanish region. Why not take a break from the beaches, and head inland to find timeless villages, valleys carpeted with blossom, gardens, mansions, waterfalls and natural swimming pools? Here’s our pick of the 5 most overlooked sights in the Costa Blanca! (PS But if it’s beaches you’re looking for, check out our list of the top 10 beaches on the Costa Blanca!)
The Sierra Helada (known as Serra Gelada in Valencian) is a beautiful natural park located just a few miles from Benidorm. Grab some picnic supplies, throw on your trainers and get out of town – you won’t regret it! There are spectacular cliff walks, a host of trails to suit hikers of all levels of fitness and some breathtaking picnic spots to enjoy.
Locals flock to the Fonts de l’Algar (Algar Waterfalls), a series of natural pools and small waterfalls located near Callosa d’en Sarrià, about 10 miles from Benidorm. The water is icy-cold – but heavenly on a hot summer’s day! There are picnic areas, and the higher you go, the fewer people you’ll see.
Casa Museo Modernista
Novelda is a typical, rather ordinary, little Spanish town, which is home to something extraordinary: the Casa Museo Modernista. This beautiful mansion was built at the turn of the 20th century in the Modernista style – similar to French Art Nouveau – and is lavishly decorated throughout. If you know and love the famous Modernista buildings in Barcelona (such as Gaudí’s Sagrada Familia), you won’t want to miss out on this enchanting gem!
Cherry blossom in the Vall de Gallinera
If you’re visiting the Costa Blanca in early spring, take a drive through the glorious Vall de Gallinera (Gallinera Valley) to see the cherry blossom. A gorgeous haze of pale pink and white blossom carpets the hillside and the air is heady with the scent of the blooms. The valley is home to a string of pretty, traditional villages (Benirrama, Benialí, Benissivà, Benitaia, Carroja, Alpatró, Llombai and Benissili – total population: 600), where you can tuck into some tasty local food at one of the old-fashioned restaurants. Come June, don’t miss out on the cherry harvest festival – and make sure you try the cherries, which are the sweetest and most delicious you’ll ever taste!
Klein-Schreuder Sculpture Garden
This beautiful sculpture garden in L’Alfàs del Pi is a two decade-long labour of love by Johannes Klein and his wife Johanna Schreuder. The tranquil terraced gardens are shaded by palms, and are dotted with more than 30 sculptures. They occasionally host concerts, exhibitions or other events, but are always a delightful place to while away an hour or two in perfect peace.