Javea, Costa Blanca, Spain

Javea (Xabia) lies on the northern Costa Blanca of Spain, halfway between the cities of Valencia and Alicante. Bounded by the sea to one side, and the impressive backdrop of the Montgo mountain to the other, the area around Javea is scattered with many orange and almond groves. With itís crystal clear seas and Blue Flag sandy beaches, the World Health Organisation has found Javea to be climatically and environmentally one of the healthiest places on Earth to live.

There are three distinct areas to Javea. The old mediaeval hilltop town with itís narrow streets, picturesque buildings and the lively market every Thursday. The port area, with itís Marina and traditional fishing fleet, is home to a scattering of fine restaurants and pavement cafes and the Arenal beach front on a long flat promenade with cafes, shops, restaurants and boutiques to suit every taste. With its sandy beach and calm waters, the Arenal appeals to both young and old.

With it's mild year-round temperatures, varying landscapes, from sandy coastlines to rugged mountain areas, and extensive tourist facilities, Javea has still managed to preserve all the charm of an ancient fishing village, and is truly the jewel in the crown of Spain's coastal communities.

 The Old Town

This is where you will find the main Church, the Market, Post Office and a host of Restaurants and Bars.  Up until recently Javea was a small sleepy town relying on the port for fishing and farming for local income. In fact, many of the 'fincas' that have been renovated  feautre very wide nayas - these are the covered exterior areas - and were originally used for drying the crops - such as grapes by hanging the fruit from poles that were slung across the nayas.

In the main "casco urbano" surrounding the Market and Church there are narrow "Moorish style" streets which cars cannot access but which are lined on both sides by shops of all kinds, art galleries and restaurants. Thanks to the streets being so narrow they avoid a lot of the heat of the day so a walk around here can be really pleasant. It's also worth checking out the indoor market here which is located right next to the church - good for fruit, fish and cheese.

   The Port

The port is a favourite with tourists with a range of restaurants, safe gravel beach and marina. Whilst the history of the harbour stretches back to the 15th century, the first jetty was built in 1871 and it became an important gateway for the export of raisins. The raisin trade collapsed at the end of the 19th century and the settlement became a mere fishing harbour. The modern harbour was built in the 1950s and 1960s. The nautical club has been in the central area of the harbour since 1963. The landmark is the church of Nuestra SeŮora del Loreto, built in 1967 to represent the heart and feelings of Xŗbia's fishing quarter. Its shape is that of an oval boat keel and it was built to resemble a fishing vessel bursting through the waves.

   The Arenal

The busy sandy beach area is an arc of wide white sand flanked by a promenade of shops, bars and restaurants. During the summer evenings there are a number of stalls selling handmade crafts. Many of the bars offer live music and one can party away until the very early hours. Many accomplished 'sand artists' work along the Arenal beach during the summer months as well as a wide range of street entertainers.