Walking holidays in Spain
"The rugged mountains of the Costa Blanca offer a wonderful landscape of pinnacled ridges, enourmous crags and shady pines. Orange and almond groved enhance the valleys, whilst attractive mountain villages provide hospitality, offering a real Spanish experience."
Abdet is situated in the heart of the Costa Blanca mountains. Ideally placed for a wide variety of walks, some straight from your doorstep! The peaceful village has only 100 residents yet you are certain of a warm welcome. Please visit our accommodation page for details of where to stay.
Here are a just a few of the great walks in the valley - some start from the village, other are just a short drive away.
Dates: April 30th - May 7th 2016
Location: Abdet - Costa Blanca
A week of guided walking in the mountains around Abdet. Highlights include the ascent of Valencias highest summit (Sierra Aitana), a circumnavigation of the dramatic Puig Campana, and several explorations in the Sierra de Serrella. Ancient mule trails lead through spectacular canyons to abandoned settlements perched high in the mountains. You will discover the snow traders routes which lead from the incredible snow holes high on the mountains down to the villages and towns on the coast. Golden Eagles have made a return to this area, and you may also see wild goats (Cabra) , foxes, wild boar and red squirrels.
As part of the week you are invited to help clear/maintain some local walking paths. This involves clearing collapsed walls and rocks, cutting back fallen trees and thorns. This is of course optional and is just for half a day, it's actually great fun!
- Accommodation in the beautiful mountain village of Abdet
- All food - good home cooking!
- Beer, wine, soft drinks.
- Snacks and post walk treats
- Packed lunches & drinks (apart from cafe/bar visits)
- Expert guiding
- Photos/videos of your days in the mountains
- Airport pickup/return £25 each way (fly to Alicante)
- Single Room Supplement £75
This is a varied route on good tracks and footpaths that finishes with a visit to the spectacular canyon and waterfall at the head of the Barranco de Fanalic. Approx 10km or 6 miles so ideal for a half day or a 90 minute run!
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Start by heading north out of Abdet on the minor road that passes above the cemetery and the sports area. You get good views down into the Barranco de Meli which you soon cross. You need to look for a left turn onto a track after a steep hill just beyond a wooden chalet called Machu Pichu. This is the first left turn after the Barranco. Follow this track, ignoring the turns on the right and descend again to the Barranco where the track reverts to a footpath before crossing the Barranco again immediately before a steep climb up to a bigger path. Turn left onto the bigger path and follow the path, then track all the way back to a resurfaced road.
Read more: Abdet Circular Walk and the Barranco de Falanic
A very interesting walk of approximately 8 miles with lots of variety, it retraces the ancient route taken by the locals who brought ice down from the summit of Pla de la Casa Snow Hole (Nevara) to Abdet, the villages in the valley, and the coast. The snow industry was at it's peak between the 16th and 19th Century It did continue into the 20th Century, but with the invention of electronic refrigeration it became uneconomic.
The Kingdom of Valencia was one of the main consumers of ice Spain. From the port of Alicante snow was even exported to Ibiza and northern Africa. The coastal cities had hot summers, and nearby lagoons encouraged mosquitos. The resulting diseases were treated by ice. Some think the consumption of ice encouraged economic and cultural development.
Read more: Serella - The Snow Traders Route
A short but exciting walk that visits the spectacular ruins of Confrides (Benifato) Castle. A great time to do this walk is just before sunset when the sunlight picks out the pinnacles of the serella ridge above Abdet and lights up the castle whilst the valley below falls into shade. The last section to the castle involves some rocky steps, and there are steep drops form the castle ruins. With care this walk is OK for most people, and although the terrain appears intimidating it is actually reasonably straight forward.
Take your binoculars with you, it's possible to pick out the houses in Abdet from the Castle ramparts.
Read more: Confrides Castle Walk
This short walk explores some scenic terraces, and old wash house, a rocky ravine (barranco) and an old mill. It's an ideal early morning or evening walk. 2.5km with a small amount of ascent . NOTE THE DESCENT TO THE CANYON IS OPTIONAL - IT INVOLVES SCRAMBLING DOWN ROCKY SLABS.
This walk starts from Abdet village. From the small play area at the far end of Calle Arriba walk down past the left side of Bar Mary. Here the narrow road splits. The right junction would take you down to the valley bottom (a very pleasant way to walk to Guadalest Reservoir). We take the narrow left junction which is a concrete track.
Read more: The Old Mill Walk
A 5 km walk circuit - starting and finishing at Abdet and visiting it's sister village Confrides. In the summer months this would be an ideal way to visit the pool at Confrides. See how many of the trees and fruits you can spot!
From Abdet follow the road out towards the main road, you pass some very well tended olive and almond groves. It is also worth stopping to look down into the Barranco (canyon) - you will see some unusual ridges of rubble carved by the stream. Soon you arrive at the bridge over the barranco. Be careful as the drops between the parrapets are un-guarded. Immediately on the other side take a small track on the right side leading to a ruined hut.
Read more: Abdet & Confrides Circuit (Fruit tree walk)
This short but very scenic walk takes a circuit around the pinnacles (Peña de los Cuervos - Rock of the Crows) above the village. There is a slightly shorter circuit about 4kms long. The full circuit is around 7kms. The route consists of quiet roads and tracks with some short sections of rocky footpaths.
Although only short on the walk you will pass through a variety of terrain including cultivated terraces, rocky valleys, and open hillsides with spectacular views of the Guadalest Valley. All year around there are superb displays of flowers alongside the streams, and birds of prey are usually seen soaring above the many cliffs. If you are lucky you may even disturb some wild boar!
Read more: The Pinnacles and Rocky Valley
A selection of linked circular routes on paths, tracks and virtually traffic free lanes. Routes lengths of between 2 and 11 kms. Longer if started from Abdet.
Circuit 1 - Confrides Old Mill - 3.5 kms - - - -
Starting Point: Font Toni which is just past the turn off to The Eagles Nest Restaurant. This walk can be done either way around but the navigation is probably easier anti-clockwise. The first 500 metre section is along the main road, so do take care. You can take a minor diversion here to avoid mosty of this section by turning along the narrow road on the right and taking the first path back on the left after a couple of hundred metres.
Read more: Confrides Walking Circuits
The ruins of Serella Castle are hard to spot at first, but once you locate the obvious impressive fin of rock across the valley from Guadalest you have a good chance of seeing what remains of the walls. Despite it's amazing postion perched on a huge precipice it is a surprisingly easy but spectacular mountain top walk, with only a couple of rocky steps right at the top. With care it is suitable for children, but you have to be aware of the obvious drops once at the castle ruins. The short walk is deal for hot days as much of it is shaded and you will get any breeze that is going. It can be made a longer walk by starting from near the reservoir or even at Guadalest.
Read more: Serella Castle Walk Short Walk & Serella Castle Circuit
This delightful 8 km walk descends to Abdet via the tracks and paths of the Ombria/Solana Valley. For this version of the walk you will need to get a lift back to the start to collect your car (or enjoy the 275 metres of ascent back to your car on a bike).
The best starting point is at the Forest track 2.5km from Confrides (heading towards Alcoy). The track is identified by the large red Serella - Aitana forestry sign. If you reach the shop or the top of the pass you have gone too far. Park at the start of the track and follow this up a short climb to the walks high point at a three way split in the track. We follow the middle track (straight on). Soon the steep South facing wooden hillside (La Solana) comes into view, almost it's entire length is guarded by spectacular cliffs and pinnacles. You will also notice an amazing arch which aligns with a pinnacle as you start the initial gradual descent.
Read more: Ombria Solana Valley Walk (Valley of Sun and Shade)
Distance: approx 16kms - 10 miles Height Gain: approx 600 Metres - 2,000ft.
Good footpaths and tracks on a journey through remote tranquil valleys. This full circuit around the peak of Sanchet provides an unforgetable day out. A long and varied walk past stunning rock scenery and easy tracks through tranquil hidden valleys. Starting point: Heading to the coast on the CV70 from Guadalest the road drops steeply. Towards the bottom of the hills there is a wide cutting with stone walls on either side. Turn right immediately at the end of the stone walls and follow the surfaced track up steeply for approximately 2.7 kms to a small parking point where a track on the right (usually chained) marks the starting point. This can be further identified by the large boulder with paint marks.
Read more: Sanchet Circuit and the Hidden Valleys
An 8 kilometre walk amidst spectacular surroundings. Boulder fields, springs, snow holes(Nevaras), rock crevasses, and sheer cliffs are just some of the features of this great route. The starting point is the car park at Fuente Partagas. This spring and picnic area is approached via driving into Benifato and then turning right and the first junction. Follow the narrow road all the way to the springs. You will already have great views of the Partagas crags and the impressive cliffs of Peña Alta. Head up on the vehicle track on the left of the recreation area until you come to a signposted junction. Follow the right fork towards Puerto Tudons. The other track is the return route. This well maintained track swings back right above the springs and soon you are winding your way through a remarkable boulder field.
Read more: Sierra Aitana Peaks
5km - 300 metres of Ascent. This makes a great half day walk with some easy rock scrambling. It does have a steep descent but the views from the summit ridge are superb. It could be made into a longer days walk by approaching along the quiet approach tracks near Guadalest.
Approach: You can walk from the main road junctions but the walk is just as good if you drive up the surfaced road signposted El Trestelador Restaurant, a short way out of Guadalest (heading for the coast). Follow this narrow road, turning left at the T junction, it turns in to a rough track after a short while. Park in one of a few possible places on the side of the track, just near a small quarry above the track , and before an impressive steep orange rock wall with caves in it's base.
Read more: Peña Roc Circuit
Distance 8kms - Sanchet is almost a hidden mountain. It is composed of huge fins and butresses with some steep terraces in between. There are only three possible ways onto the summit apart from long rock climbing routes. This is a challenging mountain walk, although short in distance.
Approach; Simliar to that of the Sanchet Circuit - heading to the coast on the CV70 from Guadalest the road drops steeply. Towards the bottom of the hill there is a wide cutting with stone walls on either side. Turn right immediately at the end of the stone walls and follow the surfaced track up to it's end and in all but wet weather continue along the unsurfaced track until it is possible to park next to a farm building down to the left of the track 3.5 kms from the main road. If you come to the brightly painted house you have gone too far.
Read more: Sanchet Traverse
Distance 8kms - Visit the amazing pinnacles of Pena Yedra. Although the full circuit involves some easy scrambling it is possble to do a return walk to visit this superb area of rock scenery. Can be extended into a longer walk with different approaches.
Possibly the best walk in the Costa Blanca for rock scenery. This little known route takes you through a "forest" of bizzarely sculptured limestone pinnacles, and arches high on the hillside of the Penya Creus (The Lost World). The full circuit involves some scrambling, but it is possible to visit the pinnacles on an easy return route.
Access: By making use of the well maintained forestry tracks in the South side of the Serella ridges it can be made into a shorter walk with less ascent. If you wish to extend the walk you can approach it via the forestry track or via any of the "Serella Approach" routes shown on our walks page.
Read more: Serella Pinnacles - "The Lost World"
A superb mountain circuit with an optional ascent of this spectacular peaks highest summit. Visit mountain springs, an ancient fort and even a tunnel through the mountain! The Bernia Ridge dominates the view East from Abdet and Guadalest with its Matterhorn like profile. In reality it a long ridge which also provides a mountaineering challenge (ropes needed) like the Cuillin Ridge in Scotland. You can drive up to the Alpine style settlements high on the flanks of the mountain via a narrow road.
Distances - 8 kms - 400 Metres of Ascent - Or 11 kms and 800 Metres of Ascent including the summit.
Access: The best option is to drive to the top of the narrow road leaving the main Callosa - Altea Road near Alahma Springs. The easiest identification for the turn off is to look out for the large statues next to a small stall that sells seasonal fruit and vegetables.
Read more: Sierra Bernia Summit and Circuit
These are the best guidebooks and maps for the area. For a long time the Costa Blanca has had a reputation for having the best chance of winter sun, the cheapest flights and the most reasonably priced accommodation. However, the 'white coast' has a lot more to offer than the simple beach holidays enjoyed by thousands of tourists every year. Not only the spectacular and varied mountains close to the coast, but also the marvellous spring blossom and warm autumn days have attracted walkers and climbers from all over Europe for decades.
The Rother Guide: includes 50 particularly interesting routes which also savour details of the cultural history and reveal culnary delights. and provides a reliable companion for unforgettable days in spectacular natural environments – for short trips near to large holiday resorts, as well as more challenging summit ascents in the remote mountain countryside of Alicante province. The selection ranges from leisurely strolls along the coast, to pleasantly cool rambles along rivers and gorges, to mountain walks with stunning views.
Every walk contains a fact-file of all the important information, a detailed walk description, a small map showing the line of the route and an easy-to-read height profile. The numerous colour photos give you an excellent insight into the landscape characteristics of all the walks.
Read more: Walking Books