Found a little over 45 minutes to the south-west of Alicante, a pleasant drive from the airport, Orihuela offers a more authentic and traditional Spanish city.
The birthplace of influential poet Miguel Hernandez, the city is well off the beaten path – away from the sand, sea and tourist hotspots you might associate with the region.
The more rural feel of the location makes it great for walkers and those looking for a simple and relaxed experience.
There is a large expat population and Orihuela is especially popular with the British – this is definitely the place to explore a more natural and traditional side of the Alicante region.
Here are some of the best reasons to visit.
Orihuela is undoubtedly one of the most storied towns on the Costa Blanca with an interesting past for you to delve into.
Visitors can marvel at the ruins of Castillo Orihuela – this castle once stood and made Orihuela one of the most important settlements in the region. It was the destruction of the castle that led to Alicante becoming the major city.
Inside the town itself there are plenty of interesting things to see too.
The main church of the town is Orihuela Cathedral. Initially built as a gothic church, it was ‘promoted’ to cathedral status in the 16th century.
Built over the top of an Islamic mosque, the cathedral has a mix of architectural styles including Valencian Gothic, Renaissance features and even an organ from a Baroque renovation in 1733.
The interior is grand and impressive – it’s undoubtedly worth a visit.
Head to the course
If you are interested in getting in a little golf during your time in Spain, Orihuela should definitely be on your list of places to visit.
There are five golf courses in close proximity to the city all with high quality facilities, perfect for all skill levels:
- Real Club de Golf Campoamor
- La Finca Golf
- Vistabella Golf
- Las Colinas Golf & Country Club
- Club de Golf Villamartin
Explore the museums
Orihuela also has its share of cultural attractions that make for a fun and insightful day trip. The former house of iconic poet Miguel Hernandez has been turned into a museum on his life, taking you on an interesting insight into the Spanish civil war and Hernandez’s persecution by the fascist regime.
It’s also worth paying a visit to the Episcopal Palace, where you will find the Diocesan Museum of Religious Art which includes paintings by Diego Velazquez and Sanchez Coello.