Living in Guadalest Spain: The Definitive Guide

Guadalest Spain

Have you ever been to Guadalest Spain?

The ancient village of El Castell de Guadalest, is usually referred to as simply Guadalest.

The town is located in a mountainous area known as Marina Baixa in the province of Alicante in the south east of Spain.

It is a lovely village, which survives entirely on tourism. Guadalest is the most visited village in Spain.

Ready to discover Guadalest Spain?

Read on :-)


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Where is Guadalest?

Guadalest is located in a remote mountainous region of Spain about 25 km inland from Costa Blanca.

Its remote location means it is not easily accessible by other means although it is not too far in distance from the resorts well-known areas such as Denia.

Guadalest Spain map

(Guadalest Spain – Google Maps)

Would you prefer the sea? If you drive to the coast, between 45-60 minutes away, you will find soon the towns:

Valencia province is located up north Guadalest Spain.

The Region of Murcia is the next region to the south.


What is the History of Guadalest?

The castle at Guadalest was built during the 12th century.

From 1293 the castle changed hands several times between private ownership and royalty until an earthquake on the 22nd of July 1644 destroyed the castle, with a further tremor later that year destroyed most of the town.

Guadalest Spain castle

Further damage was inflicted during the War of Spanish Succession in 1708 and further earthquakes in 1748 and 1752.

The powerful Orduna family owned the estate until 1934 when the final member of the family died without an heir.

Eventually, the village was given the title of a historical-artistic town.

In 1994, the Orduna house was refurbished and became the Municipal Museum.

As you can see, Guadalest Spain has a big story to tell, as Orihuela :-)


General Information about Guadalest

Driving south Guadalest, around 1.5 hours away, you will find the coastal areas:

Guadalest has a permanent population of only around 200 people, originally the people of the town lived within the protection of the castle walls.

The castle is only accessible through a tunnel cut through the rock at San Jose Gate. Inside the walls are the dungeon, and bell tower.

The city of Benidorm and can be reached along the CV-70 road.

The town grew up around the fortress and the houses were built outside the San Jose Gate.

The area known as ‘el Arrabal’ is made of tiny streets and squares where the majority of the shops, including craft shops, museums and restaurants are found today.

Guadalest is around 45 minutes away from Benissa.

Guadalest Spain landscape

Below the village, the River Guadalest flows through the area and it has been dammed to form a spectacular reservoir which can be viewed from various viewpoints around the village.

The international airport of Alicante is located around one hour away from Guadalest Spain.


What is the Weather like in Guadalest?

The most pleasant weather in Guadalest occurs during the months of April, May, October and November with average temperatures of between 20-25C, similar to Alcoy.

The driest months are January, July and August, although during the entire year Guadalest receives very little rainfall.

The hottest months are June, July and August when the temperatures can be in excess of 40C, as in Elche, although the average temperature is 31C.

The coldest month in January with an average temperature of 16C.


What Architecture can be seen in Guadalest?

Surrounded by the mountain ranges of Aitana, Serella and Xorta, Guadalest was an important strategic military stronghold dating back to at least 715AD.

The area saw action during many battles and earthquakes have left their mark.

Guadalest Spain town

The most notable historic buildings to view here are the Castle of L’Alcozaiba built in the 11th century.

The Tower Crag of Alcala, the Gaol, or prison that dates from the 12th century and the 18th century Baroque Catholic Church.



Unsurprisingly, in a location that is geared totally towards tourism, there is little in the way of culinary expertise or unique dishes to be found in Guadalest.

There are several restaurants and all a little more expensive than those to be found in the coastal resorts of the Costa Blanca.

The food found here is typically Spanish with some western options. Typically dishes feature rice and seafood such as paella and tapas.


How much does it cost to rent or buy property in Guadalest?

Surprisingly, for such a small place, Guadalest has a number of properties available and many are at reasonable prices with one bedroomed properties for sale from below 40,000 Euros up to more than 100,000 Euros.

These prices are often dependent upon being small apartments or properties standing alone with sizeable land attached.

Two bedroomed apartments are available from around 75,000 Euros.

Villas will cost in excess of 300,000 Euros.

I searched several property rental websites and there was nothing available for long term rental properties in the area of Guadalest.


What are the most Interesting Attractions I should visit in Guadalest?

Castle of San Jose

The remains of the Castle of San Jose (Saint Joseph) can best be viewed from a cliff overlooking the old walled town of Guadalest.

It was originally built during the 12th century and rebuilt during the 15th and 16th centuries before being destroyed by an earthquake in 1644.

Nearby, the Alcozaiba fortress is an 11th century structure and is located on the property of the Orduna House, all that remains today of the fortress is a tower that has been restored.

Rock of Alcala

Known locally as Peñón de la Alcala, this is a rocky peak that rises straight up from the surrounding land making it difficult to attack.

Access to this site is extremely difficult and only the base of the cylindrical castle tower remains.

Guadalest Spain mountain

When in use the tower was a watch point over the entire valley and it helped protect the north flank of Guadalest Castle.

Our Lady of the Assumption Church, Guadalest

This Baroque style church is located in the older walled part of Guadalest close to the Orduna House.

It was constructed between 1740 and 1753 on the site of a former temple which itself was destroyed during the Christian Conquest of the 13th century.

During the Spanish Civil War the church was burnt and looted.

In 1962, alterations meant the length of the church was decreased, the floor plan changed while the cupola and transept were removed entirely.

Further restoration work was conducted from 1995-6 to preserve the buildings interior.

Ethnological Museum of the Valley of Guadalest

This museum is open daily with the exception of Saturdays when it is closed all day.

There is free entry to the museum and it shows the tools that people used here, what their homes were like and the clothes they wore in the years gone by.

It is located inside an 18th century village house and has the reconstruction of a house of the 18th century showing a bread oven, a pantry, exterior areas and a bedroom furnished as it would have been during that time period.

Agricultural production is also covered with displays showing how mills ground olive oil and the machinery and tools used at that time.

Museo Microgigante

This is a fascinating museum, located at the entrance to the village.

Some of the items on display are to be viewed through magnifying devices as they are so small and cannot be viewed by the naked eye.

There is  a bullring constructed on a pin head, an ant playing a violin and a painting on a single grain of rice.


Yours Free

Spain 101 is a free ebook full of unique tips that will save you thousands of Euros when moving to / living in Spain.

Would you like to get your copy now?

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