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Vistas of Valencia Walk

from $1,949.00

The deserted mountains behind Valencia form a varied region where traditional villages, perched on sharp ridges and valley sides, are a world away from the popular Mediterranean coastal resorts just 20 minutes distant. Superb flowers, birds and butterflies, and a fabulous day out in the city of Valencia!

  • Reviews 77 Reviews
    5/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Guided
  • Activity Level Moderate
    5/8
  • Group Size Small Group
    2 - 12
All about the Vistas of Valencia Walk.

Just south of Valencia’s architectural splendour, the spectacular mountains of the high Marina Alta guard citrus valleys, vineyards and steep almond terraces blossoming with pink in early spring. It’s a contrasting and dramatic region where traditional villages, perched on sharp ridges and valley sides, seem a world away from the popular Mediterranean coastal resorts nearby.
The walks are led by your hosts Sue, David and their trusted guides and mostly follow the extensive network of ancient Arab trails and mule tracks that lace the surrounding sierras and villages. In spring and autumn, the paths are awash with daisies and spectacular orchids perfume the hillsides dotted with ancient ruins of deserted dwellings, farmhouses and inns. Spectacular views of coast and country are a constant and there is a wealth of flora and fauna to discover whilst a variety of wild birds circle overhead, including choughs, peregrine falcons, bonellis and short toed eagles. You’ll also visit Valencia, a cosmopolitan city with an abundance of historic and futuristic buildings to discover.
Based in the heart of hilltop Parcent, a colourful Spanish pueblo where tourism is virtually unknown, a warm welcome is always waiting at Casa Carrascal, an exquisitely restored, traditionally decorated C17 hotel. There are just six en suite bedrooms, each lovingly adorned with antiques and a comfy lounge/library area where you can enjoy an aperitivo from the honesty bar. David presides in the kitchen and his mouthwatering menus are served either on the terrace or in the rustic dining room.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
  • All continental breakfasts, 6 lunches and all evening meals, with wine
  • 7 nights center-based accommodation (see accommodation section)
  • Map provided
  • Managed locally by hotelier
  • Led by experienced local guide
What is not included in this tour?
  • Flights
  • Room upgrades and extra nights at selected hotels (inquire for prices and details)
  • Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)

Highlights

  • Excellent contrasting walking with majestic mountain and coastal scenery, panoramic views at every turn
  • Spectacular peaks, dramatic gorges, tumbling waterfalls, ancient Arabic trails
  • Traditional white villages, stunning turquoise bays, citrus groves, olives, almond blossom
  • Intimate, exquisitely restored hotel in a quaint wine village with wonderfully friendly hosts
  • Over 200 varieties of wild flowers, butterflies and rare birds of prey
  1. Day 1 Day 1 Arrive in Parcent

    Arrive in Parcent where a light lunch is provided. You can then enjoy a stroll around the village before dinner.

  2. Day 2 Day 2 El Somo Circuit 12km/7.5mi/5hr

    Today’s walk winds between three inland gorges each more spectacular than the last! Farm paths through cherry orchards lead over open ridges, with ever more expansive views of the coast before we picnic in a ruined farmhouse below a castle on a ragged vertical peak. From here, we wind past bright pink valerian above a sunken chasm, and descend through almond terraces perfumed with camomile back to the start.

  3. Day 3 Day 3 Caballo Verde 15km/9.5mi/5.5hr

    A ferocious battle between the Moors and Christians, the last on mainland Spain during the Spanish Reconquest, took place on the Caballo Verde Ridge high above Parcent village in 1609. Today we follow a steady stepped trail cut centuries ago by Arab traders through almond terraces leading up to this ancient battlefield, marked by a lonely cross on the rocky hillside. We picnic with views out to the distant Balearic islands before descending from a rocky ridge into Benichembla village for a drink in the lively local bar.

  4. Day 4 Day 4 Coll de Rates 10km/6.5mi/4.5hr

    We walk through orange groves into the Carrascal range, ascending the Barranco Negro and picking wild blackcurrants as bee-eaters wheel and chatter overhead. Look out for jonquils, perfect tiny daffodils, while thyme and wild Angelica line the mountain path almost all the way to the summit, from where we have views over several surrounding sierras. On returning to the village in the late afternoon, look out for the pelota players thrashing a ball to and fro along the main street to the cheers of local supporters!

  5. Day 5 Day 5 Independent exploring in Valencia

    After breakfast, we give you a lift to the station to catch the 45 minute train (tickets included) to the splendid city of Valencia. Visit the Plaza de Mercado, cathedral, Museo de Bellas Artes, with original works by Goya and El Greco, and the UNESCO world-heritage site of the Llotja de la Seda (Silk Market). The landmark of the city is undoubtedly the City of Arts and Sciences, an architecturally futuristic museum complex that attracts in excess of 4 million visitors a year.

  6. Day 6 Day 6 Smugglers' Cove Walk 7km/4.5mi/4hr

    Many coves and beaches near Parcent were well used as smuggling depots in olden days. Our route winds down a rocky, narrow gorge filled with lavender and wild fig to a stunning turquoise bay, where the surrounding cliffs are honeycombed with illicit storage caves connected by mule tracks. We ascend to a superb seaside trail beneath the soaring cliffs and walk below tumbling waterfalls, before returning to the beach for a swim, and a transfer back to the hotel.

  7. Day 7 Day 7 Bernia Ridge 12km/7.5mi/4.5hr

    Few walks offer as many high impact views as today’s circular route around the 1000m high Bernia Ridge near the coast where a steady ascent leads to an amazing natural cave. After ducking through (it’s just 15 metres), fabulous coastal views stay with us to our picnic spot, a ruined C16 Moorish fortress! After exploring the extensive ruins we pass over a ridge to Echo Gorge and follow a breathtaking traverse to the sound of cicadas and skittering lizards, before an easy descent back to our starting point. Tonight David cooks a huge wagon-wheel sized paella on the terrace to round off your week!

  8. Day 8 Day 8 Leave Parcent
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Where you stay
Casa Carrascal
Parcent is a traditional Spanish village in the Marina Alta region near Valencia. The area is characterised by high limestone sierras and plunging valleys full of almond terraces and orange groves and vineyards. Parcent is a working village, and staying here for the week lets you enjoy a truly authentic experience of village life. Casa Carrascal is a converted town house in the centre of the village, around a one hour drive north of Alicante airport. It has 6 double rooms and an apartment on the top floor with 2 bedrooms, all furnished with heavy antique furniture, beams and attractive tiled floors. The restaurant and lounge are on the ground floor along with the honesty bar and a small library of books. Dinners are also served on the terrace at the back of the house.
Eating and Drinking

All continental breakfasts, 6 lunches and all evening meals, with wine.

All the food at Casa Carrascal is sourced locally and is prepared with flair and originality. The menu changes weekly so that it can reflect the best and freshest food available. Everything is cooked to order and so individual needs can be catered for and a vegetarian option is always available.

When you think of Spanish cuisine, probably the first thing many people think of is paella. Valencia is the home of this national dish. Traditionally served at lunchtime, it is cooked either de carne, with chicken and rabbit, or de marisco – a seafood version. Every good Spanish home has their own special recipe for the perfect paella and Sue and David are no
exception!

Although fish is not used in the Valencian paella, it is still a very important part of the local cuisine. A huge variety of fresh fish is available including fantastic sardines, mackerel, sea bream and sea bass and all these find themselves on David’s menu regularly.

Other regional dishes include arròs amb fesols i naps (rice with beans and turnips) or arroz negro (rice cooked with squid turned black by the squid’s ink). An alternative to the ubiquitous rice is fideuá which is a paella made with noodles. These dishes are often accompanied by a portion of alli oli, a delicious garlic mayonnaise.

This trip is Activity Level 2 (leisurely/moderate) with 5 days of walking.

The walks on this holiday are on uneven mountain tracks, and paths are stony in parts. Walkers should be confident and moderately fit and have hill walking experience. Short stretches of Smuggler’s Cove and the Bernia Ridge are unsuitable for people with a fear of heights. Walking boots are essential, walking poles are recommended.

The walks are led by your hosts Sue, David and their trusted guides and mostly follow the extensive network of ancient Arab trails and mule tracks that lace the surrounding sierras and villages. In spring and autumn, the paths are awash with daisies and spectacular orchids perfume the hillsides dotted with ancient ruins of deserted dwellings, farmhouses and inns. Spectacular views of coast and country are a constant and there is a wealth of flora and fauna to discover whilst a variety of wild birds circle overhead, including choughs, peregrine falcons, bonellis and short toed eagles. You’ll also visit Valencia, a cosmopolitan city with an abundance of historic and futuristic buildings to discover.

Overall Rating
5/5
Reviewed On 07/11/2019
4/5

Mr Tempest

Very good holiday with fortunately sunshine, blue skies and no rain. Walking terrain was at about as tough as we want now. Great Chef and every evening meal was much looked forward to.

Reviewed On 27/09/2019
5/5

Mr Reynolds

Our Vistas of Valencia walking holiday was extremely enjoyable, despite adverse weather conditions at the start. Good company,fine dining and the thoughtful attentiveness of our hosts rounded off each day's walking perfectly. Consider combining with a few days in Valencia ,a fabulous city, to complete the experience.

Reviewed On 25/09/2019
5/5

Ms Godfrey

This holiday was everything we hoped for and more, from my first contact with Morgan at Headwater through to the holiday itself. A truly relaxing experience. Sue and Dave thought of everything, the walks were excellent and well thought through, the food was lovely and they could not have been more helpful. A problem with our room (due to very extreme and unusual weather conditions) was quickly dealt with and resolved entirely to our satisfaction. The holiday was perfectly paced and we were able to kick back and relax, knowing we were being well looked after. Interesting walks, lovely companions in our group and first class food and drink. We could not have wished for more.

Reviewed On 11/04/2017
5/5

Mrs Pattison

Full of admiration for the way Sue and David cook the meals, lead the walks, cater for individual needs and remain cheerful and welcoming throughout.

Reviewed On 16/05/2019
4/5

Ms Mcmahon

I wish there was a grade above “excellent” to describe our hosts at Casa Carrascal. Sue and Dave were beyond excellent in every respect - they took such good care of us all, gave us masses of local information, cooked wonderful meals and were great fun to be with. They were so kind and sympathetic when I had difficulty with some of the more strenuous walks, and generally made the holiday really special.

Headwater response:
Thank you for the wonderful feedback. Really pleased to read that Sue and Dave took care of all of you. I have passed your comments onto them as its always good to know when you have created a great experience for your guests.

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Package Confirmed Dates Trip Status Trip Status Price (PP) Excluding Flights Price (PP) Including Flights  
November 16, 2019
Available
$1,949.00
N/A
February 15, 2020
Available
$1,949.00
N/A