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Santa Barbara Castle It is set on the Monte Benacantil hill, a location of great strategic value. It is so-called as it was captured from the Moors by prince Alfonso of Castile on the feast day of Santa Bárbara. The castle was remodelled in the times of Philip II. It suffered numerous bombardments during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. It opened to the public in 1963 and that same year, the two lifts that run inside the hill were inaugurated.


The Alicante Museum of Contemporary Art (MACA) opened in 2011, and is a descendant of the old Museum of La Asegurada which was created in 1976 thanks to the work of Eusebio Sempere. It has three permanent collections: the collection of 20th-century art, which includes works by Miró, Dalí, Juan Gris and Julio González; the Juana Francés Collection, donated by the artist on her death in 1990; and the Eusebio Sempere Collection, acquired by Alicante Town Council since 1997.


The Archaeological Museum of Alicante is an archaeological museum in Alicante, Spain. The museum won the European Museum of the Year Award in 2004, a few years after significant expansion and reallocation to renovated buildings of the antique hospital of San Juan de Dios. The museum houses eight galleries that use multimedia to allow visitors to interact with the lives of past residents of the region.


The Bonfires of Saint John is a traditional and popular festival celebrated around the world during Midsummer, which takes place on the evening of 23 June, St. John’s Eve. It is customary in many cities and towns in Spain; the largest one takes place in Alicante, where it is the most important festival in the city. The biggest celebration in Portugal is held in Porto, where it is known as the Festa de São João do Porto. The bonfires are particularly popular in many Catalan-speaking areas like Catalonia and the Valencian Community, and for this reason some Catalan nationalists regard 24 June as the Catalan nation day.


The Santa Maria Basilica, this is the oldest church in the city, dating back to the 14th century. It was built upon the ruins of Alicante’s biggest mosque and has a single, non-cruciform nave with side chapels between the buttresses. The basilica had to be rebuilt following a fire in the 15th century. Its baroque facade is crowned by two assymetrical towers – one built in the 14th century and the other in the 18th century. Highlights include the doorway with its image of the Virgin Mary by sculptor Juan Bautista Borja. Inside it boasts an 18th century rococo main altar and the Bautismo, Inmaculada and Comunión chapels.


The magnificent Caves of Canelobre are just 24 kilometres inland from Alicante near Busot and are said to be Spain’s largest and deepest cave system. The caves were formed many millions of years ago, but they are still slowly changing at a rate of just 1cm every 100 years! The stalactites and stalagmites are continuously growing and aided by the clever lighting take on the shapes and forms of all sorts of animals as well as giving the caves a cathedral like feel. The main attraction is the candelabra formation, from which the caves have taken their name. The caves are open all year and can only be visited as part of a guided tour – remember to take warm clothes as it is cold inside! They do not close for siesta so make an ideal midday activity. The views from the entrance are simply stunning, and there is a small picnic area so that you can admire the vistas whilst enjoying your sandwiches and waiting for the next tour to begin.


The Gravina Museum of Fine Arts, which is known as the ‘Museo de Bellas Artes Gravina’ in the Spanish language or ‘MUBAG’, is a Spanish museum which is dedicated to the painting and sculpture of the Spanish region of Alicante, along with some works from other artistic disciplines. The pieces on display range from around the 16th Century to the first half of the 20th Century. The purpose of the Gravina Museum of Fine Arts is therefore to showcase some of the best artistic talent from the region of Alicante. As a result, the majority of the pieces in the museum’s collection are pieces completed by local artists.