Denia lies some 7km north of Javea along a spectacular winding mountain road watched over by Montgo Mountain. It is an attractive resort with a fascinating old town, fine restaurants and magnificent beaches stretching for many kilometers to the north. On arrival from Javea you’ll first come to a pretty little beach just before the marina on your right then an area of high rise apartments appears.
Near the Denia train station is the very helpful tourist information (Glorieta del Oculista Buigues, 9) where you can get a town map and stroll along to Marques de Campo. This lively street is lined with open air restaurants which are nicely shaded by trees. The surrounding streets are great for shopping. A tourist train runs from the tourist information office to the castle. Check times on the noticeboard outside.
For sightseeing head up to the town hall (ayuntamiento) building from Marques de Campo and visit the Iglesia de la Asuncion church with its fine dome. Then continue up the steps following the signs for the castle which overlooks Denia Bay. The castle closes for lunch between: 1pm and 3pm from October to March, 1.30pm and 3.30pm in April and May, 1.30pm and 4pm in June and September and between 1.30pm and 5pm in July and August. All the old houses that surround the base of the castle have been nicely painted in different colours adding to what is already a rather atmospheric place to wander around.
From the castle make your way to El Port which consists of a line of attractive restaurants facing the port area. Most of them tend to specialise in local rice based dishes as well as Fideua which is a noodle based paella. Often paella recipes allow for large quantities of meat and seafood. Don’t expect too many ingredients in these dishes at El Port where it is the rice or noodles which are key to the dish. If you’d like to try a pricey ‘Menú de Degustación’ (tasting menu) take a look at El Raset which is just along from the boutique hotel of the same name. Cheaper options are available.
As is the case with all the resorts in this area it is the beaches which provide the main attraction to visitors and Denia is no exception. As you head north of of town you immediately come to some pleasantly low rise properties on glorious, quiet beaches which continue on for many kilometres along this coast. By road leaving Denia in this direction you’ll first of all come across a tastefully developed resort sector with a fine range of apartment complexes, bars and restaurants geared to an international clientele which slowly becomes more of a residential area independent of the tourist area.
For a change of scene you can easily spend a day visiting Javea just along the coast, you can head south to the multitude of theme parks which surround Benidorm and as an interesting short excursion you can head a few kilometres inland to the beautiful Las Calaveras caves at Benidoleig. Golfers will find plenty courses available around the Costa Blanca including the new development at Oliva Nova Golf Resort just outside of Denia to the north.
There are also full and half day mini cruise options along the coast which visit other resorts including Javea, Calpe and Altea. The ferry terminal in the town centre lies only about 300m from the town’s train station which is convenient for services south to Alicante (if you’re headed north to Valencia you’ll need to take a bus to Gandia and catch the train there).
If you’re looking to get over to the Balearic Islands there are daily ferries from Denia to Ibiza (you can see Ibiza on a clear day) and less frequent services to Mallorca and Formentera. Balearia Ferries serve these Balearic islands. Their timetables vary each year with additional services available during the summer months.
Recommended Hotels in Denia
If you’re looking for 5-star luxury near Denia then head for the Denia Marriot La Sella Golf and Spa Resort in Jesús Pobre. The hotel has its own golf course and many of the spacious rooms overlook it. It offers a selection of bars and restaurants onsite but if you prefer to head into Denia there’s a shuttle bus service available. A personal favourite is the 4-star La Posada del Mar which is located right in the centre of town opposite the port area. It is housed in a 13th century building which formerly served as a custom’s post. Every room is decorated with a nautical theme. What a time we enjoyed here the night Spain beat Germany to reach the World Cup Final.
A charming option with only 20 rooms is the 3-star Hotel El Raset which is very well located in a pedestrianised area of Denia just a short distance from the port, the beach and the town centre. The best budget option we’ve discovered is the quaint Hostal Loreto which is housed in a 16th century convent. It lies in the town centre of Denia just 800 metres from the beach.
Visitors to Denia can fly into Alicante or Valencia airports but Alicante is much more popular. The official website of the Denia tourism board provides more useful information about the resort.