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Calpe - villas to rent holidays in Calpe

Calpe, the artist's town. An oasis in the most popular tourist region of the Costa Blanca.Calpe is the town of connoisseurs, the town chosen by the whole of Europe as its summer retreat. A privileged enclave beside the calm blue waters of the Mediterranean, where outstanding natural beauty, gastronomy, culture, the sea and the mountains are part of the everyday life of its inhabitants all year round. There are Museums, picturesque little streets and squares and many bars and restaurants, most of them with a lively outside terrace, an ideal place to spend a pleasant summer evening. Calpe will surprise you with its daring contrasts, where modern buildings and wide avenues harmonize with an ancient fishing village, where locals are proud of their past, yet welcome tourists and visitors with warm-hearted hospitality.

Calpe is a town which is full of history and culture. Its strategic location on the coast has attracted many voyagers and settlers throughout history. Remains of Iberian tribes were discovered around the Rock of Ifach. Later, the Romans founded a prosperous colony on the coastal plain whose main activity was commerce in dried, salted fish. During the Medieval period, the farming population was spread out in a number of independent settlements. Christians and Moors lived peacefully for a time, but the local population suffered continual attacks by pirates during the 14th to the 17th centuries. Calpe entered a period of redevelopment during the 18th century, consolidating the town in the 19th century and laying the foundations for its current prosperity as a major attraction for both national and international tourism. In the ancient town center, next to the Moorish quarter (Arrabal) there is a group of monuments comprising the Torreo de la Peça, the Town Walls and the church known as the Iglesia Vieja, the sole surviving example of Mudejar-Gothic architecture in the province of Valencia. Along the coast, there is the Moli Tower and the remains of an ancient Roman salted fish industry which have only just recently been found.

Calpe facts and figures:

* Inhabitants: 13,000
* Access: Motorway A7 exits 63 and 64. National N332 Valencia, Calpe, Alicante, Altea - Alicante. Alicante airport "El Altet" 70km. Railway "Trenet de la Marina" Denia - Alicante.
* Nature: The Peñon de Ifach (Rock of Ifach) nature reserve. If you're feeling fit there's a path to the summit. The Salinas: A natural salt lake with Flamingos and Herons.

* Restaurants: 168 including traditional Valencia, Calpe, Alicante, Altean (typical dishes - "Cruet de Peix", "Putxero amb Pilotes", "Fideua"), Greek, Lebanese, Dutch, German, Indian, Chinese etc.

* Sports: Sailing - Calpe yacht harbour. Max. 5m.
Golf - Golf Don Cayo. Panoramic views of the mediterranean. 3078m, 9 holes, par 36. Urbanizacion Sierra de Altea. Club de Golf Ifach. Panoramic sea views from the clubhouse. 3406m, 9 holes, par 60. Urbanizacion San Jaime.
Tennis - Calpe Tennis Club. 6 clay courts open to the public. Altea Hills Tennis Club. 4 clay courts open to the public.
Mountain Walking - The "Costa Blanca Mountain Walkers". Twice a week with an easier walk on Saturday.
Scuba diving - Puerto Blanca harbour. Urbanizacion Maryvilla. Specialist shop and diving club. Basetes harbour.
* Fiesta calendar: January 5th - The Three Kings. The children receive their presents from the three kings at the Plaza Colon.
March 19th - "Fallas" Giant papier-mache statues on satirical themes that are ceremonially burnt.
June 24th - "San Juan" Hogueras de San Juan. Chapel of La Cometa.
July 16th - "Fiesta de Carmen" in honour of the Virgin and in remembrance of fishermen lost at sea.
August 5th - "Virgen de las Nieves". A centurys old fiesta with an impressive firework display. Offering flowers to the Virgin.
October 9th - German Beer Festival. Beer and music with German bands.
End October - "Moors and Christians" in honour of the "Santisimo Cristo del Sudor" patron saint of Calpe since 1682. Starts with an invasion of the beach by the Moors. Defense of the town by the Christians with a gun battle. The locals are members of Christian or Moorish clubs "filas" eg. Almogávares, Almorávides", "Templaris" and dress up accordingly. Spectacular firework display and parade.
* History: Calpe has been inhabited since the earliest times and until recently has made its living from fishing and almond and olive crops. It occupies a strategic position on the coast (the Peñon and Mascarat pass). B.C.: Neolithic, Iberians, Phoenicians, Carthaginians. A.D.: Romans, Visigoths, Arabs/Moorish until the 1254 Christian re conquest by Jaime of Aragon. The coast was attacked by North African pirates until the 17th century, accounting for the town walls and watchtower.

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