The autonomous community of
Valencia (autonomous community in is the next level down from the nation state) runs up the central eastern seaboard with 518 kms of coastline. The autonomous community, in turn, is made up of three provinces, Spain Alicante, Valencia and Castellon (there is also a very important city, , which is different to both the province and the community). Valencia
My Stage 4 takes 16 days and passes through the provinces of
Alicante and . I have used an itinerary from a web site http://www.racodelom.es/ which helpfully plots the route and gives the distances and times involved in getting from place to place. The route travels through what looks like sparsely populated attractive countryside. There are none of the larger historic towns which characterised the walk through Andalusia and Valencia . Murcia
The end of the walk through
Murcia and the start of the walk in Valencia (in the ) will be at Pinoso. Pinoso is a small town (7,000 pop) about 40 minutes from the province of Alicante airport. It has a growing ex-pat population as the coast in Alicante is so highly developed. Should be places to stay. Alicante
Day 1 involves a 28 km walk to
which should take just over 6 hours via Encebras, Casa del Senor, and Madara, all small villages. The route looks like a fairly easy trail through an agricultural landscape. Elda is a significant town with a population of 55,000. It does not however have a very good web profile – but it is the second most important place in Elda for shoes. Lots of places to stay. Spain
Day 2 is a 22 km walk to Castalla. North, north-east of
the scenery and points of interest seem to improve, more castles and bigger mountains. Castalla itself is a small town (pop 7,000), an 11th C walled castle and some accommodation. Elda
Day 3 is a 29 km walk to Alcoi. It looks like a nice walk taking your through the Parque Natural del Carrascal de la Font Roja. Alcoi is a large industrial town and the route doesn’t actually go into it. There should be plenty of places to stay.
Day 4 is another 29 km walk to the town of
again taking you through a park (Parque Natural de la Sierra Mariola). Bocairent is small but with bed and breakfast accommodation. Bocairent
|Parque Natural de la Sierra Mariola|
Day 5 involves a 26 km walk to Vallada (just off the GR7 – Vallada.es). Accommodation is now starting to get more difficult and I’m not sure if the accommodation referenced on the town’s web site is for overnight stays.
From here until Cortes de Pallas it’s really difficult to find places to stay and consequently finalise the stop-overs. The route takes you over a large mountainous plateau known as the Caroig Massif (lots of cave paintings) and while I think there is accommodation (sometimes on campsites with huts) pinning it down is not straightforward.
Day 6 looks like a 29 km walk to Benali which I think is actually a farmstead with some holiday lets and possibly overnight accommodation. If that works Day 7 is then a 25 km walk to somewhere near Collado de Caroche. There is definitely accommodation in the area, including a campsite which should have huts, but again it’s difficult to tell whether this includes overnight accommodation.
|Cortes de Pallas|
Day 8 is then a 30 km walk to Cortes de Pallas which definitely does has accommodation. The walking is more of the same limestone countryside with dramatic gorges and dry valleys. The whole area is important for power generation with reservoirs, hydro and nuclear power generation facilities.
Day 9 involves a 30 km walk to Pocicico Valentin via Venta Gaeta. This looks like an amazing walk with a longer option at the end if you want to stay in a refugio. The hostel “Casa del Rio Mijares” looks excellent and so I don’t think I’ll extend the walk.
Accommodation looks difficult for day 10. There might be some at El Rebollar, which would then involve an 18 km walk. If not it might be necessary to catch a bus to Requena, where accommodation is plentiful, and return to El Rebollar next day. Alternatively there might be some accommodation further along the trail (although haven’t found it yet).
Accommodation at the end of a 30 km Day 11 is also uncertain. There are a number of small villages in the right place (Villar de los Olmos and Villar de Tejas) but none are advertising accommodation. Directly on the route is Refugio las Lomos but I suspect this is a literally unmanned refuge.
Assuming I stay somewhere near the Refugio las Lomos than the next day is a 30 kms walk to Benageber where there definitely is accommodation.
Day 13 involves a 17 km walk to Chelva which, with a population of 2,000 people, is a metropolis by recent standards. There is accommodation and Chelva looks like an attractive town.
Day 14 is a 28 km walk to Andilla via the
. Small village but with some accommodation village of Alcotas
Day 15, the final day in the
involves a 23 km walk to Bejis. Although there is no reference to accommodation on the village website I’m optimistic! province of Valencia
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