DESCRIPTION: Small village of 480 people , placed in the North of the county of Alicante, at 550 meters altitude, between the areas of La Marina Alta , La Marina Baixa and La Vall de Seta. Surrounded by Serrella Mountains of 1.379 meters, Alfaro Mountains of 1.166 meters and Aixortà Mountains of 1.126 meters, it still conserves remains of an interesting past.
LOCATION 38º 43´29´´ N
SURFACE 45,90 square kilometres
ECONOMY: The economy of the town is based on dryland farming: almond trees, olive trees and carob trees, in full transformation after rural and interior tourism. Palm craftwork, through which baskets and hand bags are made, is still preserved .
FESTIVITIES: Celebrated in honour of Santa Ana (Saint Ana) on the 26th of July and La Asunción de la Virgen (the Virgin´s Asuncion) from the 15th of August. The best of the festivities are the processions with saints, the Moors and Christians Parades, the outdoor music bands at night and the popular Carreras de Gallos (Cocks’ races)
HISTORY: In 1609, the Moors who had settled in this area rebelled against the order of expulsion and were finally defeated on the bloody battle that took part in the area of the called Pla de Petracos. After this, they were all boarded in Denia´s harbour.
Due to this fact, the areas of Aialt, Vil.la and Santa Maria were deserted (the remains are still visible) and the new settlers settled in the called La Alcúdia de Castells, the origin of the current village.
This area belonged to La Orden de Calatrava (the order of Calatrava) , whose cross is still part of the town´s badge.
THINGS TO VISIT
Old Church : Building build on the 18th century, whose tower was restored in the middle of the 20th century .
Historical Centre of Town
Ethnological Museum: where you can experience how people used to live in a 19th century farming house. You can also see an audio-visual about the findings of cave paintings in the area of Pla de Petracos.
Leisure Area in Bancal Blanc
Santuario del Pla de Petracos (Sanctuary of Pla de Petracos ): In the areas of La Cova Alta and Santa María , you can find one of the best representations of the Macroesquematic Art, which might be 6000 years old.
The cave paintings site in Pla de Petracos (Castell de Castells) can be seen at around 500 metres above sea level, on the left side of Barranc de Malafi
(Malafi´s ravine). Found in 1980 by members of Centre d’Estudi Contestans, is composed by eight shelters, five of which have perfectly visible painted motifs.
This area has amazing natural sites such as Els Arcs (Natural Arches) ,La Canal
( The canal), La Cova del Somo (Somo’s Cave) , La Cova d`Aialt ( Aialt´s Cave) and delightful spots such as Les Fonts de la Retura (Retura´s Fountains) , La Font dels Teixos (Teixo´s fountains) or El Matissal , which can be very special places, especially for nature lovers. Moreover, in this area can be found all the species of the Mediterranean flora, especially a wide variety of aromatic and medicinal plants.