Explore all the things to do in Villajoyosa in 1 day and discover this charming Costa Blanca town on a short getaway from Alicante.
💯 Take a look at the things to do and see in Alicante in 2 or 3 days.
It is one of the most beautiful villages on the Costa Blanca, close to Benidorm and Alicante. It was called Vila Joiosa, “happy town”, to attract settlers.
With a long seafaring tradition, Villajoyosa is located on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. Famous for its colourful houses, the wide sandy beach in the town centre and the manufacture of chocolate, let’s discover all the things to do in Villajoyosa in 1 day.
Where to stay in Villajoyosa
Being a small village, the accommodation options are concentrated along the seafront promenade and near the historic centre. Our recommendations for accommodation in Villajoyosa are as follows:
- Hotel Censal: just a few metres from the beach, it has exquisite decoration, spacious rooms and a solarium. Ideal for couples.
- Hotel Allon Mediterrania: on the promenade of Villajoyosa, rooms with balcony and sea views, swimming pool and bar. Perfect for families.
- Pension Rosa: economic option near the train station and the beach. Simple and clean rooms. Good breakfast included.
Need more options? Check these hotels in Villajoyosa.
📜 TABLE OF CONTENTS
Map – Things to do in Villajoyosa in 1 day
Villajoyosa is a very small town so it is easily covered in an afternoon and on foot. On this map we mark the landmarks we have visited and mentioned in the article:
1) See the hanging houses, one of the things to do in VIllajoyosa in 1 day.
The narrow river Amadoiro borders the old part of the town and flows into the sea, running through a narrow gorge.One of the attractions to see in Villajoyosa are the colourful hanging houses that stand out over the cliff.
The perfect view of these hanging houses is from the opposite side of the river, across the bridge. It is also worth walking down the steps to the river, a kind of great green lung of the city centre with promenades on both sides of the watercourse.
Right on the riverbed (which used the force of the water to function) is the Llobeta Royal Mill which, although it is not known when it was built, there are records that it was already in operation during the 17th century. In the last century they ceased to be useful due to the appearance of the flour industry.
2) The colourful fishermen’s houses
One of the things to see in Villajoyosa in 1 day are the colourful houses that were and still are the homes of the fishermen.
Painted in different shades of blue, green, red and yellow, they were originally used so that the fishermen could easily distinguish their home from the sea. A custom that is still preserved and that you will love when you visit Villajoyosa.
You will find these old houses scattered throughout the old part of the town, from the main church to the beachfront.
3) The historic centre of Villajoyosa
Villajoyosa’s historic centre is very small but has so much charm that you will stop every so often to take pictures. We think it’s very Instagrammable.
Along your walk you’ll find several boards with accessible information in several languages and even in Braille, so you can learn a little more about the history of each place you visit. It is a project carried out by the Vila Museu. Also in the centre is the museum itself, with ethnographic, archaeological, contemporary art exhibitions and much more.
With its narrow streets sloping down to the sea, the colourful facades of the houses, the doors, and windows and the street lamps, Villajoyosa is uniquely beautiful.
At the height of the Rue de Travesseret, it is possible to go down towards the river and the Place du Château. This is because in the 19th century this part of the Old Town wall was demolished so that there could be another gateway into the village.
On the route you can appreciate the church of the Assumption, which also served as a fortress centuries ago to take refuge from pirate attacks and the remains of the defensive wall and watchtowers. Behind the church and the wall, was “la costera”, which was the traditional slope leading down to the beach.
- Book your free walking tour in Villajoyosa here. You will learn about its history and attractions with an expert guide.
4) The beaches to enjoy in Villajoyosa
Villajoyosa surprised us with its beautiful central beach, which stretches from the mouth of the river Amadoiro to the town’s port. It is a large sandy area with playgrounds for children and there is also a mini theme park that overlooks the Avenida del Port.
You can also enjoy walking along the promenade and stop off at one of the beachfront bars and restaurants for a beer on the terrace with views of the sea.
If you want to enjoy small coves, near Villajoyosa there are many options such as Playa de los Estudiantes, Playa del Moro, Raco del Conill, Cala Fonda and Playa del Torres.
During the walk along the promenade, you should pay attention to several historical references, such as:
- La Fonda: where ships moored in previous centuries, it was one of the most important in the area. It ceased to be used in the first half of the 20th century and then ended up being destroyed by a storm. It is located next to where there is a hut with a lighthouse.
- Baths of Neptune and Basseta de l’Oli: it is a marine spa that existed until 1970 and can be seen if the tide is not too high. This beach is the best place to celebrate the Fiesta de San Juan.
5) The tradition of cocoa, visiting Valor Chocolate Museum
Villajoyosa is considered to be the chocolate capital of Spain and this is demonstrated by the chocolate factories that were established in the area. So one of the things to see in Villajoyosa is related to this delicious sweet.
The legendary Valor brand is one of the most important in the country and has a chocolate museum that can be visited. A very interesting tour where the history of the company is narrated while they explain the process of making chocolate from cocoa.
In addition, there is an exhibition room to learn more about where cocoa is produced and how it reaches Europe, and a collection of old machinery when chocolate making was done entirely by hand.
6) Torres al Aguilo hiking trail
While there are many hiking trails to do around Villajoyosa, one of the most accessible and not physically demanding is the hiking trail that starts from the Torres beach and goes all the way to the Finestrat beach in south Benidorm.
Starting next to the Hercules Tower, a Roman funerary monument, the path goes into the mountains by the sea and goes through some of the above mentioned beautiful coves until it reaches the Finestrat beach.
From the route you can enjoy an excellent panoramic view of the city of Benidorm and also contemplate the sunset by the sea.
7) The Way of St. James through Villajoyosa
It is worth mentioning that Villajoyosa has a great tradition related to the Camino de Santiago (“Way of St. James”). In the Old Town is the building that housed the Hospital de Pobres from where the pilgrims who came to the town by sea resumed the road by land to Santiago, to where there are about 1128 km. Today this building houses the Casa de la Juventud (Youth House).
Pay attention to the shells marking the way to follow along the Camino Real de Orxeta. There it joins the road coming from Benidorm and at the height of Vilena, it joins the Camino de Santiago that starts in Alicante.
8) Moors and Christians Festivities, a must see in Villajoyosa
If you visit Villajoyosa between July 24th and 31st, then you will witness the Moors and Christians festival, a very special celebration which attracts a large number of people. It commemorates the landing of the Barbary pirates in 1538 and the resistance of the village’s Christians who managed to defeat them in the naval battle.
Particularly, the best part of the Moors and Christians Festival in Villajoyosa is the recreation of the naval battle, where people dressed in the traditional costumes commemorate the battle on the sea shore. There is also a parade through the town and a large number of concerts.
9) Villajoyosa with kids
Getting around Villajoyosa with kids is easy and there are plenty of attractions for them. In the historic centre, although it has many ups and downs, you can walk with the baby carriage without any problems. And then, to go back up from the beach to the old town or to go to the train station, there are escalators that go through an entire playground on the hillside.
On the sandy beach, there are many playgrounds for children, so they can have fun on the slides.
On the promenade there is also a small park with attractions such as a trampoline, which is open during the high season.
Finally, one of the attractions to see in Villajoyosa that children will love is a visit to the Valor chocolate factory that we mentioned above.
Useful information to visit Villajoyosa in 1 day
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– Getting to Villajoyosa
Villajoyosa’s nearest airport is Alicante airport. From here you can hire a car to drive the 30 kms that separate the two cities or hire a transfer service.
If you are travelling by car, take AP-7 or N-332 from both Alicante and Benidorm. From Benidorm the distance is less than 15 kilometres.
Also, the easiest way to get there is by tram from both Alicante and Benidorm on line 1. The journey from Benidorm is very short and from the centre of Alicante it takes 50 minutes.
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