The Valencian Community is often celebrated for its numerous beaches and traditional festivals, but there is another side to this Spanish destination that visitors should not overlook: its stunning mountain sites. With options suitable for all ages and skill levels, exploring the mountain ranges in the Valencian Community is a must for any nature lover. Keep reading and discover the most beautiful mountain sites in the Valencian Community.
One of the most impressive natural parks in the Valencian Community is the Espadán range, located just a short drive from the capital Castellón. Spanning over 30,000 hectares and 19 municipalities, this park is home to beautiful towns such as Artana, Sueras, Eslida, and Higueras.
The landscape is dominated by the cork oaks the locals call “sureres”, and foxes, genets, wild boars, and badgers can often be spotted in the park. Hikers can tackle peaks like Espadán Peak, Pinar Peak, and Rápita Peak.
One of the mountain sites in the Valencian Community that everyone should visit is the Relleu Footbridge. Less than hour’s drive from Alicante, this route starts from the town hall of Relleu and goes through the walkway of the dam.
The 5-kilometer-long hike is comfortable for people of all skill levels and is marked with green and white tracking posts. One of the best parts of this route is that it culminates in a 40-meter-high glass-floor lookout.
For a family-friendly hike with breathtaking waterfalls, head to the Three Waterfalls Route in Anna, Valencia. This 6-kilometer trail has a gentle 100-meter slope and is suitable for children, as long as they are supervised by an adult.
The natural highlights of this route are the awe-inspiring Salto waterfall, Anna Staircase waterfall, and Vikings waterfall. After descending 135 steps, you can take a dip at the refreshing Gorgo de la Escalera swimming hole.
Hikers can explore trails like Cova de L’Aigua-Racó del Bou, Campo de Tiro-Cima, and Camí de Colonia-Cova del Gamell. The park also boasts prehistoric caves and archaeological sites dating back to the Upper Paleolithic period.
Located in the province of Castellón, the Penyagolosa Natural Park is known for its striking limestone rock landscapes and the 1814-meter-high Penyagolosa peak, the second highest in the Community.
One of the symbols of this park is the Sanctuary of Sant Joan de Penyagolosa, where numerous pilgrimages and processions take place from nearby towns. The area is also a popular place to spot golden eagles, mountain goats, shrews, and butterflies.
Another mountain site in the Valencian Community that is worth visiting is Montanejos. Just over an hour’s drive from Castellón, it features scenic trails along the Mijares River, the Arenós reservoir, Puebla de Arenoso, and the Mijares viewpoints. However, the main attraction is the Fuente de los Baños de Montanejos, where the clear, turquoise blue water stays at 25 °C all year round.
The Calderones Route starts from Chulilla, a small town less than an hour’s drive from the capital of the Valencian Community. The trail is a 19-kilometer circular route with 787 meters cumulative elevation gain, so some preparation is required to complete it. However, the effort is well worth it just to take in its spectacular landscapes, such as the imposing canyon of the Turia River. Another popular tourist attraction there would be the two breathtaking hanging bridges.
Lastly, nobody should miss the Canelobre Caves in the Valencian Community. This 80,000-square-meter karstic cave is located a half-hour drive from Alicante, near the town of Busot in the Cabeçó D’Or Sierra.
The cave is accesible through a 45-meter tunnel, where you can admire stalactites, stalagmites, columns, and jellyfish. This natural wonder is 145 million years old, although little was known about it until the 19th century. Currently, the Canelobre Caves are open to the public.
In conclusion, the Valencian Community has a diverse range of mountain sites waiting to amaze any traveler, offering a glimpse into the stunning natural beauty of this surprising region.