Palm Groves Of Elche
Less than a 50 minute drive from Benidorm lie the impressive Palm Groves Of Elche, a vast green sea of vegetation visible from miles away. Thought to have originally been planted by the Carthaginians in the 5th century BC, it was the Romans who developed the irrigation system which was then further improved during the occupation of Elche by the Moors. Today the groves are the largest in Europe and one of the largest in the world, having been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000.
Elche Palm Groves
The palm groves of Elche spread throughout the city and make for a great day out during the hot summer months when visitors can find cooling shade whilst exploring the groves. Most visitors choose to start their walk in the Huerto del Cura Gardens, declared a National Artistic Garden, and then move on to El Palmeral Museum. The museum is located in the Huerto de San Plácido Garden and close to the Route Of El Palmeral which makes its way through the groves and offers lovely seating areas where you can enjoy a picnic. Make sure you check out the famous Imperial Palm that has 7 stems shaped like a candelabra.
The palm groves of Elche are not the city's only claim to fame. Elche is also the largest producer of footwear in Spain, and many visitors to the city are there to browse the lovely boutiques or take a tour of one the shoe factories. The most popular tour is at Salvador Artesano shoe factory and outlet where you can see the manufacturing process and even sample a glass of the locally produced, sweet Mistela wine.
Don't take a lot of cash with you, or take a lot of cash with you, the choice is yours. Whatever you choose, the factory's shop floors are extremely impressive and offer an excellent selection of footwear and accessories, including popular brand names.