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A l i c a n t e      Savouring the Seavalencia

 

History 

You have now arrived in a city with three thousand years of history behind it. ali geschAnd in order to understand it and enjoy it all the more, we should consider not only its present but also  its past, so as to delve a little more deeply into the idiosyncrasies of the city and its inhabitants. 

The first settlements in the area were centered around the slopes of mount Benacantil, occupied today by the castle of Santa Bárbara, which combined the privileges of being close to the sea yet offering the protection of being high above the surrounding land.

Another settlement was located in the Benalúa area, where the Roman city of Lucentum was built, the predecessor of the city of Alicante today. Other villages from the same period have been located at the Albufereta and in the Serra Grossa. With the arrival of the Moors, the present-day city was built under the protection of the castle. Alfonso, later to become the 10th, known as the Wise, conquered the city in 1246 for the Castilian crown, and in 1308 Jaime II incorporated Alicante in the Kingdom of Valencia 

Beaches

ali strandThis is undoubtedly one of the city’s strong points. Alicante’s mild climate makes beach-life feasible practically all year round. You certainly have a lot of beaches to choose from. An open beach? La Playa de San Juan, with seven kilometers of golden sand flanked by a road enabling you to stop wherever you want.

 

 

Fiestas 

The calendar in Alicante is fuller than usual as far as festivities are concerned. Depending on the season in which you happen to be staying in the city, you can take your pick from an extensive variety of fiestas. 

The most important of these are undoubtedly what Alicanteans call Les Fogueres de Sant Joan held at the end of June. This is the time of year which Alicante becomes completely transformed. Dozens of monuments made of wood andpapier-mâché are assembled the streets throughout the city. Humor, satire and criticism of daily life bring many a smile to the faces of spectators. On the night of 24 June, after a shattering palmera, or  fireworks display, all monuments are -summarily consumed by the flames. 

These festivities, however, last until 29 June, overlapping with the Feast of San Pedro, featuring colourful processions, fantastic fireworks and revelling in the popular barracas, makeshift fiesta houses constituting the center of attraction for locals and visitors -alike, with live outdoor music and dancing every night. 

Another prominent festivity is the romeria, or pilgrimage, to the neighbouring village of Santa Faz, held on the second Thursday following the eighth week after Faster and attracting thousands of "pilgrims".

 

Congress and Trade Fair Centre 

If we add to all of the above the fact that Alicante is also a city with excellent road, air and sea links offering a complete range of services, with its own Congress Centre and a wide choice of hotels, there can be no doubt that it is an ideal convention and congress centre. 

Alicante province is also strong on trade and industry, as reflected in its trade events held throughout the year in thePalacio Ferial of Alicante such as the International Fair for Footwear Fashion and Technology (MODATEC), the Automobile and Caravaning Fair (FIRAUTO), the Building Materials Fair (FIRAMACO), the Mediterranean Tourism and Hotel Trade Fair (MEDITUR), the Real Estate Promotion and the Consumer Goods Fair (FIRALACANT).

 Parks and Gardens

Alicante look towards the sea, and does so from its famousPaseo de Ia Explanada, one of the most beautifulali gruen seafront promenades in Spain. There is nothing as pleasant as strolling along this quayside promenade lined by four rows of palms, tessellated with marble in Alicante red, cream and black in imitation of the neighbouring waves of the Mediterranean. Along the Explanada there is a music pavilion where the Municipal Band gives concerts on feast days. 

Alicante Nights 

Due to its mild, inviting climate, Alicante has an easy, carefree nightlife all year round, although the summer season obliges it to continue into the wee hours of the morning. 

There are many places to have a drink or a bite to eat around town, but we can particularly recommend the old city centre, known as El Barrio. You'll find bars, cafés, taverns, cervecerías, pizza joints, mesones... each with its own style and personality, where the music never stops, from salsa, to jazz, not to mention rock, sevillanas and others. The "modern" zone (between Alfonso El Sabio and the Explanada) offers other types of entertainment, with elegant pubs, restaurants with tamed cuisine, discotheques and dance salons, all with the most sophisticated of décors, where the nightlife is no less enthusiastic than elsewhere.
In Summer, enjoy the nightlife in the Playa de San Juan. 

Sportsali sport

This City offers an extensive range of sports facilities, with installations for football, volleyball, basketball, tennis, shooting, a riding school, swimming pools, gyms, the Real Club Naútico de Regatas Alicante marina and the Alicante-Costa Blanca Nautical Club, with over 800 moorings and two golf courses in the vicinity. In the nearby town of Muchamiel there is a local airport for private sports aircraft and ultralight aircraft. 

Culture 

The City offers an interesting range of cultural activities taking place in various centres around town, such as the Casa de la Cultura (cultural centre), which has a well-stocked library, a historical archive and keeps locals and visitors abreast of cultural movements by staging expositions, conferences and films. The Teatro Principal a neo-classical building of the middle 19th century, with an extensive programe, the exhibition centre Lonja del Pescador ..

In the month of September the Spanish Festival of Contemporary Theatre is held, along with the International Contemporary Music Festival. In December there is an International Puppet Festival. 

What to do?

For abstract art, pay a visit to the Eusebio Sempere Museum in the Casa de la Asegurada, where you'll find an art collection donated to the city by this local sculptor and painter.
Panoramic views of the city and sea from 166 m. high, surrounded by castle walls? Go up the Benacantil mountain and visit the Castillo de Santa Barbara. By road or using the lift from the Postiguet beach.
Music lovers can attend a concert next to the sea on the Paseo de la Explanada. In summertime, the concerts are given on Sunday afternoon and in winter in the mornings.

Don't miss the magic and charm of Les Fogueres do Sant Joan. On the night of 24 June, the flames from blazing bonfires illuminate the Alicante sky.

 

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