A hike up Calpe's Peñón de Ifach really rocks!

 Calpe is a small and charming seaside town on the Northern Costa Blanca, located between Altea and Javea and since the dawn of time has been dominated by the mighty rock outcrop of the Peñón de Ifach, the Costa Blanca's very own mini Gibraltar!

Calpe - Peñon de Ifach

 The photo above probably reinforces the "mini Gibraltar" nickname, however it is only the British expatriates and English visitors who call it that, the locals would not dream of using the name for obvious reasons!

This is not just a 332 metre high rock though, its designated a national park in it's own right and has a special protected status so no development can ever take place, retaining its charm and beauty for future generations.

The rock itself is actually a limestone outcrop rising from the sea and is linked to the shoreline naturally by years of sediment and by debris that has fallen off the rock over a period of thousands of years.

Not just a rock

Calpe - Peñon de Ifach 

This amazing landmark is home to numerous rare examples of local plant life, 300 different species of animals, and a yearly nest site for many colonies of seabirds and is by far one for the list of the most interesting things to do in the area.  Even for the holiday maker for whom if hiking and walking is not something they would normally do, it's well worth a trip to the top.

This enormous and awe-inspiring rock has inspired generations of people, both local and visitors, to climb to the top to see what must be one of the best views on the whole of the Costa Blanca. 

There is much evidence of human activity since early times in the area and this was a favourite strategic stronghold from everyone from the ancient Iberians to the Romans, and then the many smugglers and pirates that patrolled the glistening blue seas below.

The view from the top of the Peñón de Ifach

Calpe view

The Peñón de Ifach is probably best not climbed if heights are not your thing as this view of the town and marina of Calpe, from the top of the rock, neatly and elegantly suggests!

You don't have to be a mountain climber to access the rock either because there are paths which snake up the mountain side, although of course a certain level of fitness and stamina is called for.

There are of course no facilities on the rock so planning a climb in advance, with good hiking boots, sun-cream, drinks and a snack are best prepared beforehand. The rock is NOT accessible or suitable for wheelchair users or for young children and more official information is available here.

Guided tours are available and a qualified and experienced guide will take your party up to the top, which takes about an hour, but it's well worth the exertion just for the view, one that few people forget in a hurry!

What else is there to see in Nearby Calpe?

Calpe is a great place to base yourself on holiday here and there are numerous opportunities to rent quality holiday accommodation in Calpe and the surrounding areas. Calpe itself is a small-ish town with plenty of facilities for a great holiday all year round.

Calpe - historical center

There are some lovely old Spanish churches to see, plenty of shops and bars to try the delicious local food, and what would be better than to wander around the old streets and mix with the locals, or fellow tourists if visiting during the hot summer months, but Calpe is good to visit the whole year round.

How to find Calpe's Peñón de Ifach

The rock, and of course the town itself,  can be reached either by taking the AP-7 (toll) motorway or the N-332  road, and although well signposted, to be honest, it's large enough to see from most places in the area!

A stay in Calpe can satisfy the most seasoned of traveller and if you are looking for the "real Spain" this year then its a must see!