History of Calpe, Costa Blanca, Spain

Calpe town walls

Calpe has a strategic location on the coast has attracted attention from many peoples over the years. Remains of Iberian tribes were discovered around the skirts of the Rock of Ifach. Later, the Romans founded a prosperous colony to trade in dried, salted fish. Christians and Moors lived peacefully for a time, but the town suffered continual attacks by pirates during the 14th to the 17th centuries.

At the foot of the Peñón de Ifach are the 'Baños de la Reina' (literally, The Queen's Baths) that, actually wwere the site of a Roman 'factory' for the drying and salting of fish. The Peñónitself was also a good watchtower as was the Morro de Toix, and both served as vantage points to spots pirate attacks. Protective walls were built around the village in the 15th century.

The Pinon de Ifach (the massive limestone rock that is the landmark of the entire coast) towers to 332 metres over the sea, and has now been declared by the government as a nature reserve.

The Rock of Ifach, Calpe

In the ninrteen thirties writers such as Hemingway spent their summers in Calpe. Calpe's first hotel was established next to the Peñón Rock: the Ifach Parador. The Morro del Toix and the Peñón de Ifach mark the extremities of Calpe's Bay.

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