Spain Info for Tourists, Travellers & Events

Visit SpainWe at Hondon Villas use SPAIN.INFO a lot for tourist information in Spain. It’s a great 0ne-stop place to go if you are planning a trip to to or around Spain. They also have Facebook and Twitter pages if you care to subscribe to them. Well worth the time we think. » Visit the website here| spain.info

This website has some excellent articles and outstanding pictures about Spanish art, culture, museums, monuments, beaches, cities, parties, tours, cuisine and nature in Spain. You can plan your journey with their “Interactive map” and then document your travels with a free online Journal.

The weather is sublime, the Spanish are so welcoming and kind, the mountains are stunning and we have fab restaurants and a wonderful community of Brits, Dutch and other nationalities. There are so many social activities too. The coast is never far away. We feel very fortunante to have found this place to live.  : says Janni (Hondon Valley)

2017 was another record year for Tourism in Spain and the projections are that 2018 will be even bigger. We live here so we know the reasons people come to Spain year-after-year, often tempting people the buy a property for emigration or a holiday home. The Hondon Valley is very popular with Expat Brits, Dutch and Belgiques who have made homes in the campo and the upmarket Urb La Montanosa, near Hondon de las Nieves.

Spain Information for Tourists Screen

 

 

Wiki: Hondón de las Nieves

Central Plaza in Hondon

A Brief History of Hondon de las Nieves

Although not officially documented, it is said that the Hondon Valley would have been already populated in ancient Greek times. But records show that in 1246 Christian troops fought with the Arabs & Moroccans in the area.

Copyright ©2016 Hondon Villas.  Based on information by WikiPedia

Hondon was under the jurisdiction of Aspe until 1839 when it became independent and formed a single municipality together with its neighbouring village Hondón of the Friars, which in turn had been segregated from Redován. Nieves still shares many local festivals and amenities with Aspe today.

In 1926 Hondón de las Nieves and Hondón of the Friars (Frailes) separated to form independent municipalities. It reached its peak population in 1900: 3,690 inhabitants, although at that time still included the population of Hondón of the Friars. Today, the Hondon Valley, over the last 20 years, has grown to include mainly northern Europeans looking for an alternative lifestyle from their own native countries. A new urban development of about 400 villas has been built between the two Hondón villages known locally as La Montañosa Villas.

Demographics and Economics

The 2008 figures show a population for Nieves of 2,730 inhabitants, known as hondoneras / hondoneros. The municipality also includes two smaller villages: El Rebalso and La Canalosa, the latter being higher in the mountains and former between the two main villages, close to La Montanosa Urb. In reality the population swells in the summer as foreign property owners and their friends or relatives come for long holidays. It’s a busy time in the villages from May to October.

The traditional economy for Hondon is agricultural based, mainly almonds, vegetables, olives and table grapes (produced under the designation of origin Table grapes pocketed Vinalopó). In the last decade or so the local economy is complemented and probably surpassed by the real estate business (Hondon Villas AIPP registered) An increasing number of foreigners (British, Dutch, Belgium, French) is  now installed in the municipality. As such, there are many sand and gravel quarries, cement and related industries in the Hondon Valley.

Geography & Recreation

Hondon is located in a small valley protected by the Sierra de Crevillente, populated by pine, almond, olive trees and vineyards. It offers 300+ days of sunshine per year, a pleasant climate all year, an al-fresco lifestyle, clean air and a tranquil life. The Hondoneros make the most of the outdoors for both religious, domestic and for recreational needs. There are many public holidays and fiestas to tempt the locals and visitors. Many are based on religious history or holidays, such as Easter. They are always well attended.

Virgin of the snows, Hondon

Being surrounded by mountains attracts many walking groups, cyclists and game shooting. Hobby groups are in plentiful supply. You will also observe numerous animal welfare groups, horse and pony trekking and Hondon has a myriad of plant species: pine, juniper, thyme, rosemary for those with a botanical interest. The local fauna includes wild boars, foxes, partridges, hares, rabbits, lizards, owls real, etc. The mountains do attract hawks and eagles too.

Hondon Architecture

The stand-out building in the area is relatively new (and a useful place to visit), that is Bodegas Cerda, a family run wine merchant and museum to Hondon’s vineyard history. The Cerda family have a long history of growing grapes and making wine. It still does and the modern Bodega could grace any city or town. You must pay this building a visit and try its many wines.

Wine Merchant and Museum

The central Plaza, as is typical of Spanish towns & villages, is the central point for most social and official ceremonies or fiestas. The local square is often converted or re-decorated for an event throughout the year. The highlights are usually in the summer (July/August) fiestas when the children are on the main break. It seems like the village comes out then. These are a “must-see” and can both entertain and educate the visitor on the local Spanish culture.

Other places of interest: Rollo Cave, an archaeological site, is a settlement of the Upper Paleolithic.  The Parish Ntra. Sra. De las Nieves. Erected in 1746 by the Bishop of the Diocese of Orihuela D. Elias Gomez de Teran on the chapel of San Pedro, of Baroque style.

In 2007 there have been wall paintings of s. XVIII, that they are being restored.
Ermita de San Isidro. In the area of La Cruz, a small church, typical of this area.

Plaza de la Villa. With City Hall and the Culture Centre. Facade of the convent of the Franciscan Concepcionistas. Mid-twentieth century, today rehabilitated turned into the Chapel of Ntra. Sra. De las Nieves.

Hondon Gastronomy

Apart from the exquisite table grapes included in the designation of origin grape Embolsada Mesa del Vinalopó, we can taste risotto, gazpacho, gachamiga, stew and rice with rabbit and snails. You will often see the older Hondoeros collecting snails from the campo or hear the hunter’s guns early in the morning. Sweets are also well represented with crusty rolls, French toast, the sequillos or embocaos.

Most of the popular restaurants and bars are in the village plaza. As we write to include: Destiny’s, La Font, Bar Central, Bocodito, Vamboo to name a few. The local market is very popular on Wednesday and Saturday.


AUTHOR: This article ©2016 was brought to you by Hondon Villas, the local premier and award winning Estate Agent in the Hondon Valley. Hondon Villas can help you buy, sell or rent luxury villas on La Montanosa Urb, Frailes, Nieves and all surrounding areas. With over 30 years experience in real estate, a local office with mutli-lingual agents, we sell more villas than any other agent in the area. Our extensive network of online portals and collaborators, a call centre and central office ensures a faster route to property sales. Check out our website for testimonials and our professional property services. www.hondonvillas.net | www.hondonvillas.nl

European Day. Hondon de los Frailes

A special charity night in the Hondon Valley was held on 15th July 2017. This has been an annual event in the area for a few years now and brings together many residents and their visiting friends to enjoy what is a street party with live music. Organised to raise moeny for the Fiestas and local people this event fills the main plaza of Hondon de los Frailes.

This is a popular community night for all nationalities to enjoy food, drink, live bands and a disco. This year the bands were “The Hardest” (a classic rock tribute band) and “Stone Control” from Alicante who perform as a Rolling Stones tribute act. Proceeds started at 8.30pm to a very late finish … 3am +.

The village plaza was jam packed with excited and party-mood residents and holiday makers of all ages who enjoyed singing and dancing in the street. Those that booked a table were allowed to bring their own food and beverages so the atmosphere was very jovial.

A great night that the whole Hondon Villas team attended to support our local community. Thank you for a great night!

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All proceeds go to the Frailes Fiesta’s Collection.

Brexit? What Brexit, we love coming to Spain

Business Premises and Warehouse for Sale / Retail UintSpanish Tourism Minister Alvaro Nadal told a news conference to present tourism figures for 2016 that the number of arrivals last year was up by 9.9 percent over the 68.1 million foreign visitors who flocked to the country in 2015. It was the fourth consecutive year of record numbers of arrivals.

There was no Brexit effect in 2016, it did not affect British tourism in our country,” said Nadal, before adding this trend should continue this year.

Tourism represents some 11 percent of Spain’s gross domestic produc.

Already advance reservations as well as requests for landing slots at Spanish airports are going very well which confirms that the tendency for British tourism remains the same.

Each foreign tourist to Spain spent an average of €1,023 ($1,078), a 3.75 percent increase over the 2015 figure.  They spent a total of €77 billion in the country in 2016, an 8.3 percent increase over the previous year.

So Brits LOVE IT! We at Hondon Villas can’t predict the future but we do echo that 2016 and so far 2017 would suggest Brits (Dutch and Belgiums) are still keen to buy property in Spain. We are as busy as ever and had the confidence to open bigger premised earlier this year.  We are cautiously optimistic of Spanish Real Estate, despite prices being fairly static to showing slight growth.

Costa Blanca Villas For Sale
A property on the Costa Blanca is a dream for many people and once you’ve visited the area, you’ll understand why. As well as an excellent climate, the Costa Blanca boasts many beautiful Blue Flag beaches, superb sports opportunities, lots of festivals and lively nightlife. No wonder so many people are choosing the Costa Blanca for their Spanish holiday home! Here in the Hondon Valley we are surrounded 360 with glorious mountain views bathed in sunshine for over 300 days a year.

On the Hondon Villas website, you can find hundreds of Hondon area properties (Southern Costa Blanca region), from secluded rural houses and villas to town houses, land and apartments. Our property lists are frequently updated and our informed staff can help you understand the local market and make an informed decision when buying any type of Hondon Valley home or property.

Spain’s public holidays in 2017: Official List

Enjoy Easter in AlicanteThat’s right Spain get a lot of bank holidays and unlike the UK a lot of them are not on a Monday.  The Local.es has listed them for you.

Spain will have a total of 12 national bank holidays in 2017 but also there are many regional / local holiday. So get organized and start planning some weekends away.  Here is the official list of all the public holidays across Spain, as published in Spain’s BOE official state bulletin.

The nine national public  (Red Days) holidays in 2017 across all of Spain are:

January 6th: Dia de los Reyes Magos, Three Kings Day, Epiphany. (Friday)
April 14th: Good Friday
May 1st: Workers’ Day
August 15th: Assumption of Mary, (Tuesday)
October 12th:  Spanish National Day, (Thursday)
November 1st: All Saints’ Day (Wednesday)
December 6th: Constitution Day (Wednesday)
December 8th: Immaculate Conception, (Friday)
December 25th: Christmas Day (Monday)

Apart from these national dates, all regions have additional holidays. See below for the full list. Here is our own Valencia, Costa Blanca South / North.
April 13th: Maundy Thursday
April 17th: Easter Monday
October 9th: Valencia Day  (Monday)

You may also find that some Town Halls or Regions have even more extra days or half days for special occasions. And further that if a bank holiday is close to the weekend that in rural areas, like the Hondon Valley, the locals will extend their break.

So that Manaña feeling is very real … if you can’t beat them, join them eh?

#906 A Unique La Mantanza Country Finca

Exclusive to Hondon Villas. Ref: #906.
Watch the HD video below. A unique country property for sale in La Mantanza. If you want peace and quiet then this 4 bedroom country finca is for you… it is surrounded by lemon and orange groves, has a swimming pool, an established and well maintained garden, ample parking, annex storage, a roof terrace with stunning views, a shaded courtyard and many sun terraces. You are not short of space here!

This property is a chance for a rural lifestyle in a peaceful setting with excellent views of the local mountains but still close to  and a short drive to the local town shops or the large mall and superstores in Murcia via the E15 motorway. There is a possible business opportunity as a cattery or kennels.

In need of some small repairs and a general freshening up. Blissful!

More pictures and details on the Hondon Villas website.

KEY POINTS:
Large Detached Finca – 4 bedrooms – Ensuite – Great rural quiet Location – Breathtaking Mountain Views – Surrounded by Lemons & Oranges – Private Pool – Fitted Kitchen – Lounge – Dining Room – TV Room – Naya – Solarium – Outdoor BBQ and Dining Area – Plenty of Parking – Dog Kennels Wooden Storage Shed – Possible Cattery / Kennel Business – Close to Town shops.

» VIEW #906 ON OUR HONDON VILLAS WEBSITE:
CONTACT: property @ hondonvillas.net
or CALL THE OFFICE: (0034) 965 075 357

The Special Hondon Valley

[Copyright HV2014] The Hondon Valley is a special place to the people who live and holiday here. And it’s not hard to see why… with miles and miles of fertile land growing juicy grapes, tasty almonds, salty olives, spring onions and a mega selection of vegetables and fruit. The locals have relied on the land for their living. And of course many visitors and residents love to drive or walk through the valley and admire the panoramic mountain views. Add to that, the guaranteed 310+ days of glorious sunshine and the combination is a winner!

Grape Bagging in Hondon

Hondon is one of those ‘in-the-know’ secrets that brings a small influx of like-minded people to the area. Those that relish the simple al fresco lifestyle, small typical Spanish villages, the slow pace (no Sunday opening here, thanks) and the friendly community minded culture. It’s a great place to chill. Many foreigners retire here.

The summer is alive in the valley with Fiestas, concerts, special events and markets. The fiestas in particular are legendary. It would be a crime not to attend a few fiestas each year. It’s what makes the Spanish happy and brings out their family and religious values. Every village, town or city in the Hondon area has a program of events throughout the year to bring the community together. I have not tried to, but I suspect it would be possible to attend a fiesta or special event every week of the year over the Costs Blanca if you cared to!

» Check the Euro Tour Guide for this month’s events

Despite its very rural location, the Hondon Valley affords all the amenities you will need within 15 /30 minutes drive. Yes we have the usual village shops, bakers, butchers, wine merchants and supermarkets in the villages you will also find gyms, sports centres, spas, shopping malls, DIY shops, electrical goods, cinema, superstores, football stadiums, bull rings, theme parks, water parks, chocolate factory, riding schools, museums, etc… within easy driving range. You will not miss much here.

A warm welcome from a Hondon Agent

Over the last 10 years the Valencian Government has encouraged foreign investment in property. This is much needed in a region that relies heavily of tourism. This in turn leads to many foreigners, mainly northern Europeans looking for the Spanish sun, living here permanently. Hondon has also been touched by foreign investment. It is said that the area needed this in order to grow and build the mainly farmer / builder community, it’s infrastructure and develop urban land.

So now we have a quite diverse ‘goody bag’ of nationalities in the Hondon Valley… including Brits, Dutch, Belgium, French, Russian, German and Scandinavian… I think I spotted a few Italians and an Australian couple too! All these people came to live because they saw something special. We like to call it peace and quiet (but with a few rowdy nights) but on the whole the life here is pretty stress free, easy and healthy if you care to embrace it. Most do, thankfully.

Yes Spain in these austere times have many problems with funding, unemployment and social unrest but you’d be hard to spot this in the Valley where life here meanders on and lets face it, it’s too hot to be getting upset with things. Just chill on the terrace with your favourite tipple (mine’s a G&T thanks) and listen to the chirp of the birds, the wind swooning through the trees or just be hypnotised by the ‘quiet’. Or go pick a lemon off your own tree or visit the local Taparia …

Smile your in valley. So yes take it easy in the Hondon Valley… it’s not going anywhere fast. What’s the rush? Everyday can be like a holiday if you want it to be … and the washing?  As the Spanish say “Manaña, Manaña”.

Cheers or as they say in this part of the world “Salud”

Bodegas Hondón (Wine Merchants in Nieves)

Bodegas Hondón, some of the best wines in the area!
Entering Bodegas Hondón is to immerse yourself in the world of wine. This popular wine maker and seller use traditional centuries-old techniques to produce a local wine that can be shared by all. The locals know this wine well and there’s sure to be a wine to suit your tastes.

Bodegas Hondón brings to the Alicante region a quality wine directly from the barrel to our tables, with natural ingredients and with all its flavour.

The establishment collects grapes and production of prestigious wineries of Hondón de las Nieves, Jumilla, Monovar, La Romana or La Roda. Likewise, Bodegas Hondón has on its shelves a selection of marcs (such as Galicia), liqueurs, wines of denominations of origin of La Rioja, Ribera de Duero or Montilla Moriles, the traditional El Herbero traditional of this province or delicious wine Sweet Hondón.

Bodegas Hondón also has a variety of quality products such as oils, salted, hams, pickles, preserves, legumes, etc., and an excellent service of its staff who will advise their clients on any matter related to the wine culture of Hondón.

LOCATION / OPEN TIMES: Bodegas Hondón is located at Calle Joaquín Blume, 38. Open from 9 am to 2 pm and from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm, from Monday to Friday. Saturdays are open between 9 and 14 hours. Phone: 615 278 989.

La Finca Restaurant, La Montañosa Urb.

La Finca Montanosa

ARTICLE COPYRIGHT ©2016 by Hondon Villas:
The La Montañosa urbanisation boasts an excellent accommodation and social venue: “Hotel & Restaurant Finca La Montañosa” for accommodation, fine dining, drinks and entertainment. This old rustic farm house building is set central in this relatively new urban development, once a large almond grove. La Montanosa Urb. is located central to the two main and typical country villages of the Hondon Valley: namely Frailes and Nieves (about five minutes drive in either direction. (see Google map)

La Finca Montañosa has been lovingly restored and modernised by the owner and urb’ developer: Mi Casa Familie over the last decade. It retains its Spanish style with high ceilings, wooden decor’ and has various guest rooms, a large restaurant,  bar, wine cellar and games room. There is also a enclosed courtyard for functions.

Weddings and Social Events

The external gardens and courtyard are as equally pleasant for “al fresco” dining and musical events or fiestas. There is even a large fenced swimming pool for the guests to enjoy. There is both on-site parking or overflow into the quiet streets. (Always be mindful though that people do live quite close to the finca.)

The main restaurant hall is very large, spacious but retains a warmth and welcoming feel. So dinner guests have plenty of room to be seated and the bar is excellently located for indoor or outdoor service. On the many sunny and warm Hondón evenings that gentle valley breeze on the finca’s terrace works well with a vaso de vino blanco, gin y tonica or caña!

It has to be said that various managers “mine hosts” have attempted to make this a premier venue over the years and sadly this has not always been the case, despite a strong willingness from locals to attend the venue. Nevertheless, it still stands and begs to be, a great social focal point for the Hondón Valley and surrounding areas.

Hondon Valley Entertainment

As of writing (Oct’ 2016), the current management team seem to have set the bar higher and want to showcase both good food, a warm welcome and cultural entertainment. It’s early days, but they are testing the water with live music and dancing evenings, such as Flamenco, wine testing and romantic Spanish singers to compliment the Spanish and international menu. Being so large they can also cater for private functions, meetings and parties. Contact them for details.

Presently, La Finca Montanosa, is opening for weekends (Friday and Saturday) only during the “winter” months. Even though Hondón is not particularly a tourist area, the population does swell significantly in the summer months (holiday homes, relatives visiting friends and family) and of course the longer summer days beg late dinners and drinks outside. So a cautious approach to opening hours at this time makes sense. Not least because La Finca is set way back from the main Hondon road CV-845 and so it is not easy to spot. They have erected a large sign at the entrance of the La Montanosa Urb and signs along the way. It’s a local “secret” really.

Hondon Valley Finca

This really is a lovely place to visit and first timers always gasp at this hidden gem. So we should spread the word for them and encourage at least local patronage… so take a friend or two and book well in advance. We do suspect, however, that to survive long-term they need to attract customers from far and wide, those willing to make the journey for good food and music in pleasant surroundings.

We certainly hope and wish La Finca Montañosa success, as having an excellent, well run venue is both an asset to the locals and a tourist attraction for the Hondon Valley.

Address: Calle Ibi 1
La Montanosa Urb.
Hondón de las Nieves
03688 Alicante  (see Google map)

Facebook: @fincalamontanosa
Call: 639 424 704 / 608 941 663
Email: hotelrestaurantelamontanosa @ gmail.com

Hondon Valley Property AgentAUTHOR: This article ©2016 was brought to you by Hondon Villas, the local premier and award winning Estate Agent in the Hondon Valley. Hondon Villas can help you buy, sell or rent luxury villas on La Montanosa Urb, Frailes, Nieves and all surrounding areas. With over 30 years experience in real estate, a local office with mutli-lingual agents, we sell more villas than any other agent in the area. Our extensive network of online portals and collaborators, a call centre and central office ensures a faster route to property sales. Check out our website for testimonials and our professional property services. www.hondonvillas.net | www.hondonvillas.nl