There's a lot to tell about Javea, or Xabia in Valenciano. Like for instance that the World Health Organisation named it as one of the healthiest climates in the world or that there are more recorded hours of sunshine per year on this little point of land than in any other place in Spain. That is obviously of importance and one of the main reasons why the northern Europeans visit Javea but there is much much more to this charming little town.
Javea's also long been called 'Amanecer de Espana', Dawn of Spain. This because it's situated on the most eastern tip of south Spain, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Therefore, every morning the rising sun is seen first here in Javea before setting off to light and warm the rest of the country. One day San Antonio, another day San Martin, or Cabo de la Nao sees the first golden rays. But always day dawns over that blue sea, enriching the life of the old Spanish fishing community.
There is a sense of contentment, pleasure and ease. This is partly because Javea continues to be a working port and not just a tourist mecca; but also because it is a place where people from many parts of northern Europe come to live permanently, not just a few weeks a year. There is much history here, with the influence of the Moors much in evidence, with perhaps the ancient San Bartolome Church containing the soul of the village. One of its inner walls was there in 1244 when King Jaime El Conquistador defeated the Moors here, whilst the outside wall is pockmarked by fusillades of the Civil war seven centuries later.
Then there are the wonderfully fresh fruit and vegetables, the wine of all qualities and prices, the incredibly beautiful almond blossom in February, the outside markets, the fields of orange trees producing their blossom in March which perfumes the whole valley and surroundings , literally hundreds of restaurants (where to pay more than a £10 a head is a special occasion) and then of course always the clear clear air. Halfway between Alicante and Valencia airports, less than an hour from each via a modern Autopista, but far enough away to never see an aeroplane. Centrally placed to reach the cities of Madrid or Barcelona, to travel down to the Costa del Sol or just travel 10 minutes inland into the hills that surround Javea.
Of course there are the tourists, but unlike most of the resorts on the Costas of Spain, the vacationers here prefer to rent a villa with a private pool, or an apartment with a communal pool. There are very few hotels in Javea, and those that are here do not cater for package holidays. Importantly, the Spanish have taken Javea to their hearts, and make up a large percentage of the visitors. Especially the people from Madrid and Valencia love to come here to holiday and celebrate their fiesta's. There are a number of areas of Javea where people have chosen to live, whether it is an apartment or town house in the port or near the beach, or a villa in an urbanization or the surrounding countryside.
Javea is no longer a hidden paradise. Clubs, restaurants, the Parador, the Javea Golf Course, and our proud Club Nautico do all they can to make us known; as does the annual Tourist Feria. The shooting range on La Plana, riding stables, tennis courts, cricket pitch, bowling clubs, undersea diving facilities - exist for the pleasure and profit of all. Many local clubs exist and walking in the area is a favourite past-time. But above all, Javea has managed to keep it's identity and never turned into a hollow seasonal place with high-rises full of strangers.
Then last but not least there's our big friend El Montgo. The mountain just above Javea which stands guard over us all (and our wonderful weather) and from certain angles looks like a sleeping elephant. In 1987 it's pine forest slopes were decreed a Parque Natural consisting of some 2,150 hectares, making sure that it's beauty would never be lost.
There remains much more to tell and we'll mention some more details on the other pages on specifics in Javea but in the end we can only suggest you visit Javea yourself to find out first hand about this jewel of the Spanish coast.
Note: The above was inspired and sometimes based on extracts from the wonderful book “Javea/Xabia - A Year in the life of a Spanish Town” by Charlene Quince, who has lived in Javea for over 20 years. The book is a beautiful account of the area, the history, the festivals and not least the people, punctuated with some wonderful photographs by Billie Cook that capture the beauty of this special part of Spain. It's available in every bookshop in Javea.