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Costa Blanca Town/City
Denia and La Sella:
the capital of the Marina Alta, is a modern cosmopolitan city located in
the heart of the Costa Blanca's famous "White Coast". It owes its
current importance to its being the historical city of the region, a
city that was known in medieval times as the Marquesado de Dénia. Its
name derives from the Latin name Dianium; Daniya was its Islamic name.
The city experienced its period of urban and cultural glory when it
became an independent Taifa following the division of the Caliphate of
Córdoba during the 11th century. The historical centre of Denia contains
the symbol of the city, its castle. The commercial centre is located in
the calle Marqués de Campos and the adjacent streets.
the surrounding area there are Gothic ruins from the period of the
Conquest and caves where potholing is carried out. This is much more
than a holiday resort and you'll find it a busier place than its coastal
neighbours, Oliva and Javea. As well as being a magnet for tourists,
mainly British and German, Denia is also a thriving commercial centre.
It boasts modern supermarkets, an extraordinary number of banks, some
top quality shops, tax consultants, lawyers, doctors, dentists, the
area's biggest hospitals and the courts of justice. But Denia's initial
growth was as a seafaring town and it's still a working port. The old
fishermen's quarter preserves its delightful cobbled streets and
whitewashed buildings but nearby you'll find a modern yacht marina and
the ferry terminal serving the Balearic Islands of Ibiza, Menorca,
Mallorca and Formentera.
focal point is its impressive 16th century castle, which dominates the
town from a height of 58 metres. You can park on the outskirts of the
town and walk through a tunnel under the castle into the main shopping
centre. Head for the main central street, Calle Marques de Campo, named
after the Marquis of Denia who used to reside in the castle. This is a
wonderful place to sit and people watch a Parisian style tree lined
avenue peppered with street cafes on both sides.
in Denia is a sheer delight. Besides offering all the high street
essentials, there are some top of the range clothes shops with designer
wear for both men and women and beautiful gift shops specialising in the
unusual and exquisite (we're not talking sticks of rock and giant
sombreros here!) A myriad of restaurants offers some of the best
regional and international cuisine on the Costa Blanca. There are some
great tapas bars, seafood restaurants with a mouth-watering selection of
produce fresh from local waters, Indonesian, Mexican, Italian and Greek
restaurants. As for the beaches, they stretch for 20 kilometres either
side of Denia and consistently win the European Blue Flag for safety and
Things to do:
There's a huge range of places to visit both in and around Denia, whether you're interested in the region's culture, history, nature or
you just want a fun day out. A visit to the 16th century castle which
dominates the town is a good starting point. You pay a small entrance
free but then you're free to roam through the castle at leisure. There
are refreshingly few restrictions on the areas you can explore so you
can clamber over the ancient walls at will, a little hazardous for small
children though so keep them on a tight rein.
castle houses a fascinating collection of treasures in its Museum of
Archaeology where you'll find an array of human remains, coins, pottery
and ancient artefacts unearthed in and around Denia after remaining
hidden from human view since 200 B.C. Still within the city boundaries
you can visit the toy museum, the municipal food market with its
colourful collection of fresh local produce (from olives to octopus!) or
head down to the port for the traditional "Lonja del Pescado" fish
auctions. The fishermen's quarters of Baix la Mar and Les Roques are
charming with their cobbled streets and whitewashed buildings. Or visit
the Tower of Gerro, built as a look out post as part of the war on
piracy in the 17th century. Take a ferry trip over to the Balearic
Islands of Ibiza, Mallorca, Menorca or Formentera - they're only a
3-hour journey away by fast-ferry so you can squeeze in a day trip or go
for a night or two.
Denia at night:
Denia is as busy by night as it is by day. This is not an all night club
land like Benidorm but the hundreds of bars and restaurants, many with
live entertainment in the summer months, ensure that the town's more
energetic visitors are kept amused until the small hours. It's also a
town big on fiestas and there are some spectacular ones at regular
intervals throughout the year, so if you want to party Spanish-style,
book your holiday around one of the main fiestas, listed below.
of Denia's biggest "parties" takes place between March 16th - 19th. This
is the fiesta of the "Fallas" when huge papier mache effigies are
erected on street corners throughout the town, then burnt to the ground
in a spectacular bonfire party the like of which you could never hope to
see in the UK (the authorities would never allow it!). The effigies are
beautifully designed and painted tableaux giving a satirical look at the
main issues of the day, social, economic and political. The satire will
pass over the heads of most tourists but the burning of these elaborate
effigies is a sight to behold. Wander the streets and admire their
beauty by day, then join the throng at night and watch them reduced to
a heap of cinders.
June 20th-24th sees the
"Fogueres de San Juan" fiestas with yet more burning. This time it's
giant bonfires on the beach echoing the pagan rituals celebrating
midsummer night. The Spanish simply love fun, fire, fiestas and
fireworks. From August 14th-16th there's the big Moors and Christians
fiesta with spectacular street parades recalling the many hundreds of
years of Moorish occupation of this part of Spain. There are many other
smaller religious feasts throughout the year which give Denia the chance
to let its hair down, close the banks and shops and party the night
The Blue Bars, on the
Javea-Denia seafront road, is a popular nightspot and Paddy O'Connell's
Irish pub (between the town centre and the castle) is a magnet for young
music lovers and Guinness drinkers; the pub provides regular live
entertainment with rock, soul and blues music. In the summer months the
long tourist stretch of Las Marinas, the coastal strip heading north out
of Denia, bursts into life with live music, discos and various shows
until the small hours.
Beaches and water sports:
Denia normally enjoys 320 days of sunshine a year with an average
temperature of 19C, so what better place to be than down at the
beachfront? Dénia is a coastal city located to the north of the province
of Alicante and has a 20km coastline, made of small, beautiful coves.
To the north there are the fine sandy beaches of Les Marines and Les Bovetes and the shingle beaches of Les Deveses and L' Almadrava
(shingled) beaches which are craggy and rocky; to the south is the Les
Rotes beach. The mild temperature, the annual average being 18º C, means
that it is a pleasant place to stay. A monument was erected to the
climate in the eighties.
sandy beaches start in the centre of Denia, down near the ferry
terminal, and stretch for miles northwards - the beaches of Les Marines,
Les Bovetes, Les Deveses and Els Palmars provide an ideal family day
out. The waters are clean and safe, patrolled by lifeguards during high
season and boasting the European Blue Flag for water quality. All the
main beaches have the full benefits of foot showers, sunshades and beds
to hire and a generous sprinkling of "chiringuitos" beach bars
selling alcoholic and soft drinks, ice creams and snacks. Bars and
restaurants of every price and persuasion line the seafront so you've
always got somewhere to go when the going gets hot. And there are times
when it can push 40C here!
There are plenty of
beach-based activities both on and off the water. There are climbing
frames, volleyball nets and huge expanses of spare beach set well back
from the sea - ideal for football and other team sports. You can hire
sail boats, dinghies and pedaloes. Go fishing from the rocks at Les
Rotes which also provide the perfect environment for snorkelling and
scuba diving. The wealth of Mediterranean marine life makes these waters
perfect for diving. Contact Aquatic Denia for advice and equipment (telephone
+ 34 964425215).
the ferry from Denia to one of the Balearic Islands; Ibiza, Mallorca,
Menorca of Formentera. If you're a diver, you can explore the wrecks of
two Roman vessels which sunk off the coast of Mallorca in the third and
fourth centuries BC.
During its Christ of the Holy Blood
fiesta in July Denia holds its famous "Bous al Mar" (literally "Bulls to
the Sea"). It's listed as a fiesta of National Tourist Interest and it's
a sight to behold - though some British visitors find the taunting of
the bulls unappealing. The bulls are turned loose on the quayside (with
protective barriers around to protect the public) and then tormented by
young would-be matadors until either side (the bull or the bully!) ends
up in the sea. The Spanish go wild with excitement but be warned it's
enough to turn the stomach of many an animal loving Brit.
La Sella is located inland between the Costa Blanca coastal resorts of
Javea and Denia. The area covers 300 hectares of beautiful scenery,
gently rolling hills and pine forests, as well as orange and almond
groves. Scattered around and amongst this natural habitat are a variety
of private villas and small complexes with residents pools and gardens.
Conveniently situated for easy access by road or by plane being only
minutes from the main A7 motorway and within easy reach of both Alicante and Valencia international airports. La Sella is sheltered to the north by the
well known geographical feature the Montgó mountain, otherwise known as
the ‘elephant mountain’ because of its remarkable elephant like shape.
It is a nature reserve, a protected environment of beautiful countryside
enjoying the wonderful warm Mediterranean climate of the Costa Blanca.
Sella Golf Resort is a perfect destination for golfers and non golfers
alike. On site there are
restaurants, spa facilities, tennis and horse riding.
However, the jewel of the development is the modern Golf Course. Opened
in 1992, this is a professional 18 hole, par 72 course (currently being
expanded to 27 holes) with a length of more than six thousand metres.
Designed by José María Olazábal, the course is reputed to challenge all
types of players, from beginners to the more experienced. The trail has
an international reputation for it's excellent conditions to play golf
during the entire year. The lush fairways are laid in the valley are
well maintained and offer a great day's golf.
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