Women walking near the Hondo de Elche natural park.
Hondo de Elche natural park.
The park forms part of what was once the Albufera in Elche, almost completely dired up since the 18th century. It is currently made up of two regulating dams for irrigation around which there are a series of pools and salt marshes, all of which are surrounded by farming land and palm groves that make for an exceptional landscape. It has been a Nature Reserve since 1988, which is in the RAMSAR lists and is classified as a ZEPA (Area of Special Protection for Birds).
Elche a city located in the comarca of Baix Vinalopó, Spain. According to the 2008 census, Elche has a population of some 230,932 inhabitants (ranking as the third most populated city in the Valencian Community (after Valencia and Alicante) and the 20th largest Spanish city.
Part of the municipality is coastal but the main city is some 11 km (6.8 mi) from the Mediterranean Sea. A small creek called Vinalopó flows through the city splitting it in two parts.