Weekends or Escapadas as you would call it in Spanish, a fabulous word I think !
Read about the things we managed to do on our weekends!
One weekend in summer we decided to try one of the few camping naturistas (or nudist camping grounds) of Spain. I found 2 at the coast, but they were already fully booked, and then I discovered a place called Sierra Naturista in Valencia province and made a reservation.
On the way we stopped first at a monastery close to Gandía which we
passed many times: Sant Jeroni de Cotalba. It was closed,
but they do guided tours on the weekends and classic music concerts in
|Sant Jeroni de Cotalba|
We drove inland until Moixent from where we went up into the mountains on an incredible road, well known by cyclists, with u-turns cut into the rocks.
The Sierra Naturista camping lies in a sparsely inhabited area surrounded by forests and canyons. The owners are a very nice family and the atmosphere was very relaxed and friendly. Around the center with the restaurant, shop and pool there is a vast area with trees and plots with enough room for privacy.
The restaurant offers a set menu for lunch and dinner, and they also provide a vegetarian option if requested. We ate there once and it was delicious. It’s like a mixture between a self-service restaurant and a private family dinner. If you come clothed or naked doesn’t matter. Which was a first for us, but as you are not forced to be naked all the time and nobody cared, we relaxed and enjoyed to be free to do as we liked.
There are indicated routes around the premise where you can hike naked if you like, It seems to be their land.
|Sierra Naturista camping|
When we left the camping, we decided to drive through Serra Grossa on the other side of Moixent. The route until Ontínyent was beautiful through endless forests and without meeting any car at all.
From Ontínyent we drove up the fascinating valley in the direction of Bocairent, but before getting there we turned left to Muro de Alcoy. When turning left we were warned that we will reach a tunnel with only 3,4 m hight in 9 kilometres. We are 3,6 m but my husband was relaxed and just said we will see.
Before getting there we came through Alfafara, where we saw an open restaurant and a parking possibility. We stopped for lunch expecting a typical bar/restaurant where we would get a simple lunch for a good price.
It turned out we found an exceptional restaurant called Casa El Tio David with an incredible kitchen and great service. http://www.casaeltiodavid.com/
We had one of our best lunches there with excellent wine and extraordinary dishes as for example olive ice cream as an amuse gueule.
This is a place you shouldn’t pass at any time, but reserve a table there and enjoy their surprise menu.
After this experience, and ½ a bottle of wine ;-), I was much more relaxed concerning the tunnel ahead. At the end, it was no problem at all. The arch was high and the indicated height was that of the sides and not the middle.
Our planned destination was the Pantá de Beniarrés where I thought we would find a place to stay overnight. There was a beautiful spot at the end of the lake, but people had left their rubbish everywhere on the beach. We didn’t want to stay between all the discarded cans, bottles and plastic bags.
|Pantá de Beniarrés|
|Barranc de l’Encatada|
Close by we had seen a sign for the Barranc de l’Encatada. The road to get there was not really made for our caravan – we got plenty of new scratches – but we reached a parking close to the river and walked to an area, where another river joins it coming down a canyon and forming a lake before entering the other river.
We drove back up to the main road and further on until we reached la Vall de Alcalá where we stopped at the camping. They have a pool and a nice restaurant with a good price menu.
|Lunch at Vall de Alcalá Camping|
When you walk a little bit along the road and turn left you will reach the remains of the moorish village of L’Atzuvieta. (38.799960, -0.248305)
at a parking to the right. From there it is just a short walk to a
big snow well or Nevera, where ice was stored for the use in summer.
next village is called Vall de Ebo. From here a route starts into the
Barranc del inferno, it is the other side than the access from Fleix.
|Barranc del inferno|
When driving up the pass to Pego, first there is a parking to the right which gives you a great view into the barranco.
Further on there is a parking on the left, from where you can walk to some sink holes.
Driving down to Pego we saw a huge abandoned urbanisation on the hills to the right and couldn’t resist going there.
Trial in La Pesquera
At the beginning of October we used the caravan to go to a Trial competition of the Federacion de Motociclismo de la Communidad Valenciana. http://fmcv.es/.
It was held near La Pesquera, actually already in Castilla – La Mancha, so going with the caravan was a perfect solution.
The weather was great and I spent my time writing my blog and going for walks. I collected almonds and still found some grapes.
|Almond cracker next to a field of almond trees|
|Landscape near La Pesquera|
|Benches next to a creek|
Another weekend we drove to Castalla, which is a very nice town in Alicante province with a castle on a hill surrounded by narrow streets in the old part going up the hill. They offer a caravan parking not far from the center next to the sport facilities.
The first evening we walked into town and had a look around. When we got hungry we tried some tapas bars the nice man at the tourist information had recommended.
|Castalla – Casa Roja|
|Ermita de la Sangre|
|Ermita de la Sangre|
The next day we left Castalla to drive up into the mountains of the Serra de Maigmó to an area called Xorret de Catí, from where a couple of hikes start. Beside a parking and an area recreativa, there is also a closed hotel. The parking of the hotel was already full with cars from hikers, but next to the hotel we discovered an airplane landing strip which we used as parking.
We did the black circular route, past an Eremita, the house of the Calafate to the recreational area of Rabosa and up to the Eremita again and back to the hotel.
|Ermita de Catí|
It was a beautiful day and we spent the afternoon sitting outside in the sun and waiting for any plane to land next to us. In the evening we went for a walk up to the recreation area and decided to stay put for the night. The police drove past once but didn’t stop.
|Xorret de Catí – next to the landing strip|
The next morning we drove back down to Castalla and headed into town to go on a guided tour of the castle. We waited in front of the tourist information at the designated hour but nobody showed up, so we decided to go up on our own, we just couldn’t get in.
It was again a very warm day so we drove back along the coast and found a little beach south of Villajoyosa at the Torre del Charco, which we reached over a long gravel road. There might be a closer access, but we were quite sure the tunnel underneath the train line would have been to low for us. 38.491040, -0.279955
|Torre del Charco|
We enjoyed a relaxed Sunday afternoon, before we headed back home.
Trial in Viver – Castellon
For this Trial we drove to Sagunt and then inland in direction to Teruel until Jérica, where we stopped next to the football field.
|Caravan Parking Jérica|
From there a nice path goes along the river into a beautiful valley.
|Autumn leafs along the river|
|Rio Palencia near Jérica|
|Former mill next to the river|
|Iglesia de Santa Águeda la Nueva|
|Torre mudejar de la Alcudia|
The next day we drove to Viver for the Trial.
|Kids checking out the section|
A walk through Viver showed this village had a lot of history.
|Tile picture showing a scene of the historic monastery|