On the national road to Madrid, 27 Kilometres away from Alicante, is the city of Novelda, in which the Castelar
Street leaves to one side the old part of town and to the other, modem constructions. There are noteworthy houses
from the beginning of the century, the Modernist Museum, in the Calle Mayor (Main Street), the Castle of La Mola,
about three kilometres away, with an odd triangular tower, of the XIV Century, unique in the whole of Valencia, and
the Sanctuarv of La Magdalena, of Modem Art, inspired by Gaudí.
The vineyards which smooth the landscape disappear in the direction of Monóvar (Monóver), giving way to drier land,
where some almond trees can be seen. Here, the City Hall, Azorín House, the Museum of Arts and Trades can be visited,
and one can shop for shoes, leather and copper articles and lace.
To arrive at Villena, one has crossed Elda, practically joined to Petrel (Petrer) due to industrial growth, and
leaving Sax to the left, with its amazing castle. In Villena, The Church of Santiago, Gothic from the XV Century,
along with its castle are declared of national artistic and historial interest. It was of great importance during
the years of Arab dominance, and was reconquered by Femando III and Jaime I.
Returning to Salinas up to Pinoso, where very interesting ceramics are found, leaving behind almond and olive trees
and going, back to the vineyards, already in Hondón de las Nieves (Fondó de les Neus), with marble quarry and a
curious panoramic view from the mountains of Crevillente, in order to reach Aspe, with indigo-,
ochre- and sienna-colored houses, and items of handicraft pottery.
Next to Aspe, Elche, the palm tree city,
joins the present to its medieval past, and in its surroundings the garden of "Huerto del Cura"
(Orchard of the Priest) can be found. Close to the palm tree orchard, and on the edge of the old area of
town, is the Castle Palace of Altamira, one of the towers of the old wall, where the general councils of the town
took place. The Archeological Museum is not to be missed.
In the old area, the so called Mystery of Elche takes place, a medieval representation held in the interior of the
Basilica of Santa María, of Baroque Levantine style, and separated from the tower of Calahorra by the Santa Isabel
Square. In Elche, the shoe, leather and glass work will tempt the traveller.
Reed-grass and rush-covered lands, natural ponds, orchards, and palm trees complete the area of El Hondo lagoon,
between Elche, Crevillente and Dolores, which form the second most important wet area of the Valencian Community,
after La Albufera, and in which ecosystem take refuge more than 250 species of water fowl. This has been declared
a national place.
In Crevillente, (Crevillent), with bright colours and Arabian look in its quarter of Las Cuevas, rugs and tapestries are made.
On the detour to Cox, where the ruins of a XV Century castle are preserved, the route will take us to Callosa de
Segura, with its Renaissance Church of San Martin, Gothic in its front and with rich jewlery pieces, Dolores, San
Fulgencio and Santa Pola, vacation center, with its XVI Century castle.