Orihuela Costa is like living in a bubble as Covid doesn’t seemed to have hit us as hard as it has other places. I do know that it has deeply affected some people here and I feel for all those people that it has caused sadness to.

Most places here are functioning, albeit with fewer customers, and most are doing alright in these Covid times. A visit to Benidorm will show you that we are lucky and that Covid is devastating some areas of tourism, with many places closed and those that are open seeming to shut at 2pm and not reopen for the afternoon.  I was told that over half of all restaurants, cafes and bars are now closed.

With borders shut maybe you are thinking that this is not a good time to take a break away, but some might just fancy a change of scenery and a night away, there would be no hussle or bustle of people here. The point is though you would be supporting businesses that are struggling to survive in this hard and difficult time.

Benidorm
Benidorm

Benidorm once a hectic, packed resort which had plenty to offer the hordes that descended on it is now resorted to a few. So if the thought of wandering around the Old Town of Benidorm with bargains to be had in some hotels on the sea front, and a visit to the wonderful restaurant owned by the 2 Ians situated in the Old Town, for a special evening meal, then Benidorm is for you.  Maybe pick up some unusual Christmas presents then sit quietly enjoying the sea breeze with a drink in hand.

I found everywhere to be very strict with their Covid restrictions and hygiene.

Driving 10 minutes out of Benidorm it’s surprising to find that you are in lovely hilly countryside and the Town of Guadalest, just a stunning short ride away, amongst pine forests, citrus groves, and olive trees. The views from this tiny village are superb from wherever you look.

Guadalest

Normally Guadalest would also have had hordes of people visiting it through the summer but not this year, so a day visit here would give them some support.

There are nine unique museums, a Salt and Pepper shakers museum displaying 20,000 different shakers from around the world. Museum of torture instruments to name just a couple.

You can visit the restored house of the Orduna family which is fascinating as you get an idea how it was to live in ancient times. The exit from the house takes you for a short walk outside behind the old buildings, where again the views are just stunning.

There are many shops selling souvenirs and unusual gifts, giving the chance to purchase a different kind of Christmas gift.

The village is split into two and they join through a 15-foot tunnel in the rocks. It is uphill although not too steep but be aware. Just here on the right is the white bell tower of Penon de la Alcala which is perched high up on the mountainside.

From the very top of the village there are views of the glorious blue lake and surrounding picturesque valley and mountains.

Another place for a night away or a day trip is Alicante. It doesn’t seem to be having the same problems as Benidorm as it is a city so still many people around, if you want to have the atmosphere of a busier area then Alicante could be for you.

Alicante city and port
Alicante city and port

The old town is fascinating to stroll around and imagine how it would have been many years ago to have lived there. There are museums, monuments, and beautiful churches to view amongst the old town.

There are numerous good tapas bars to take lunch either in the back streets or along the beautiful Paseo de la Explanda. There are museums, monuments, and beautiful churches to view amongst the old town.

There are a couple of cafes for coffee and maybe a brandy set amongst centuries old trees. A wondrous setting.

Or wander over to the marina area with its array of small and huge boats sitting bobbing in the water and sit in one of the many cafes and restaurants.

You cannot go to Alicante without visiting the castle set high above the town. It is reached either by walking up a steep hill or by a lift deep in the middle of the hill the castle is set on. This is reached by walking through a long tunnel, then the lift takes you up to one of two levels.

At the top on a clear day you can see for miles and the scenery is spectacular.

With many people suffering mentally in these Covid times an overnight stay or day trip to somewhere close by and familiar might be able to give you a lift and bring more positive thoughts.

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