Villajoyosa, Spain is a gorgeous town situated along the Costa Blanca in the province of Alicante in the wider Autonomous Region of Valencia in the southeast of Spain. It’s called Vila Joiosa in the local Valenciano dialect and nicknamed La Vila.
The old town is characterized by its colorful neighborhood, lush beaches, and tranquil ambiance. Little and quaint, it’s the perfect destination for a weekend trip.
Sit back and enjoy views of white sand beaches from cute cafes, relish plate after plate of regional tapas, and soak in the sun without the crowds of tourists that flock to the nearby cities.
How to get to Vila Joiosa Spain
You’ll likely end up flying into Alicante’s Alicante-Elche Airport if you’re traveling from elsewhere in Europe. If you are coming from North America, you may end up coming to Madrid Airport. From Madrid, you can get a fast train to Alicante and be there in under two hours.
Luckily, there are a few ways to get to Villajoyosa directly from Alicante Airport.
Taxis cost somewhere between €60 and €70 and take under forty minutes. But it’s worth considering hiring a car at the airport instead and driving straight to your holiday home. Off-season you can get rental cars for as little as €15 a day. Check Discover Cars for the best rates.
Getting public transport from the airport isn’t favorable, you’ll have to make various changes and it takes up to two hours. Instead, look into getting a shared shuttle bus if you want to travel economically. They cost about €17 each way and you can pre-book a space on Beniconnect.
How to get around Villajoyosa Spain
Hiring a car is the best option if you want a hassle-free trip and more flexibility over where you go and when. Car rental companies worth considering in Spain include Enterprise and Europcar.
You can pick up most rental cars directly from the airport too, which is handy. To compare different options for your holiday dates check out price comparisons at Dicovercars.com<.
However, even without a car, it’s pretty simple to get to all the popular destinations nearby, especially Benidorm and the beaches in Alicante as it’s right in between these two well-known cities.
You can get between Villajoyosa and Alicante via tram in exactly an hour via Line 1. The most convenient stops to start and finish at are the Luceros tram station in Alicante’s city center and the Creueta tram stop in Villajoyosa.
Benidorm is closer still. It’s just fifteen minutes drive and just over half an hour away via bus or tram. You can take an ALSA bus or tram Line 1 towards Benidorm (make sure you don’t head in the opposite direction and end up in Alicante!).
There are some fantastic bus connections with ALSA buses from Villajoyosa to smaller places nearby. But just consider that in this region of Spain, getting to quiet nature spots can be a bit tricky without a car.
Places to Stay in Villajoyosa Spain
There are so many fantastic hotels and serviced apartment options for your stay in Villajoyosa.
Whether you are traveling on a budget, you want a nice but affordable spot, or you’re willing to splurge on a beachside villa, there are plenty of options to choose from here.
Budget Hotels in Villajoyosa
The spacious apartment at Ático Centro Villajoyosa is ideal if you’re hoping to avoid busy resort hotels this summer. It is located right in the heart of the old town and, thanks to the size of Villajoyosa, very walkable to the beach, too.
The apartment starts at about €85 per night ($90 USD/£74 GBP) depending on what time of year you are booking. It has everything you need to self-cater and cook your own meals. There is a large living and dining area and a patio to enjoy evening drinks or morning coffee. Book a few nights at Ático Centro here.
Most of the affordable options around Villajoyosa are apartments or studios that you can rent for a few days or a week.
The going rate during peak summer months can range from €80-110 for budget apartment options. Check out all of your hotel options for the dates you plan to travel on Booking.com here.
Mid-range Hotels and Apartments in Villajoyosa
Casa Hermes is a fantastic option if you have a little bit more money to play with and want to stay somewhere close to both town and the beach. They have three different apartment sizes including a studio, a one-bedroom with a sofa bed, and a double room with a sofa bed.
Depending on whether you are traveling as a family or a few friends on a trip to Villajoyosa, you can get a great deal on a lot of space at Casa Hermes.
The apartments start at about €150 per night during the summer season and taper off to about €90 per night during the shoulder season. This region is one of the warmest places in Spain in winter, so this is a great option if you plan to visit at that time of year.
Luxury Hotels in Vila Joiosa Spain
Want to indulge yourself in a luxurious stay while you are visiting Villajoyosa?
If you’re ready to splash out on your perfect hotel then a stay at the Hotel Servigroup Montiboli is exactly what you’ve been looking for.
While not located close to the downtown of Villajoyosa, the Hotel Servigroup Montiboli is about a 5-minute drive away and transfers to and from town are available for guests of the resort.
Their double rooms come with spacious balconies and they have breathtaking sea views. The hotel is also along the seafront, just steps away from the beach.
There’s an outdoor pool, a sauna, and the hotel has a great restaurant on-site as well. Book a stay at Hotel Servigroup Montiboli here.
Places to Eat in Villajoyosa Spain
One of the best reasons to take a vacation to Spain is to enjoy the cuisine. Whether you want to indulge in some of the best paella from Valencia or sample tapas in Madrid, each city and region of Spain has something different to offer.
Vila Joiosa is no different. You can find some fantastic restaurants to sample Valencian classics with a heavy lean toward seafood dishes. You are at the coast after all.
Taverna Valenciana El Posit
Cheap and delicious, this traditional tavern-style restaurant is all about seafood. And so it should be, considering your views of the beach as you sit at your table.
They serve a range of local dishes, like seafood paella, octopus, squid, and freshly-caught fish. They also have a huge selection of tapas on the menu. The beer is ice cold and the prices are very reasonable.
Restaurante Ca Marta
Located just on the edge of town near the beach, Restaurante Ca Marta is another fantastic seafood spot. They have flavorful paella, whole fish, fried squid, and a huge dessert menu to keep the sweet tooths in the group happy.
This is one of the better options in Villajoyosa for traditional and local food.
The menu is in Spanish, so be sure to download Google Translate onto your phone so you can take photos and translate it while you are looking over it. The waiters speak a little bit of English and can help if you have any problems.
Ca Marta is also a nice option for vegetarians. They have a nice selection of tapas and raciones (larger portions of tapas) which are completely meat and even dairy free.
Restaurante Hogar del Pescador
The restaurant’s name “the home of the fisherman” is very appropriate. Although you won’t spot any fisherman here. This is more of an upscale affair with white tablecloths and impeccable service from the staff.
They serve a range of seafood dishes that are beautifully presented. The attention to detail and use of higher-end ingredients in each dish is reflected in the slightly higher prices.
Enjoy your lunch here with a glass of local white wine and views of the harbor.
For a fine dining experience while you are visiting Villajoyosa, be sure to make a booking at Casa Elordi.
They have two set menu options to choose from depending on how much food you want to enjoy. The dishes are served as share plates for the whole table, so you will want to visit Casa Elordi with friends and family who don’t have any food restrictions.
The menu at T-Class is a fusion of Asian cooking styles and Spanish ingredients. You can have everything from patatas bravas to sashimi tuna. The menu is varied enough to accommodate meat lovers, seafood seekers, vegetarians, and vegans, making it a great option for groups.
Most dishes on the menu are under €20 with a few exceptions for high-ticket seafood items. Like many Spanish restaurants, the dishes are designed to be shared amongst the group, so prices reflect the portion sizes as well.
See the location of T-Class on Google here.
Things to Do in Villajoyosa Spain
The main reason to come to Villajoyosa Spain or La Vila for short, is to relax on the beach. It’s to shut off from the big city, disconnect and enjoy being surrounded by the sun and sea.
You may even want to consider looking at some of the meditation retreats in Spain to really get away from it all.
That being said, there are a few fun things to do in the area that you won’t want to miss out on while you are visiting.
Discover the picturesque casas pintadas
Villajoyosa’s most picture-perfect landmark is the long road of brightly painted houses along the beachfront.
Known as the “casas pintadas” which means painted houses in Spanish. It’s said that the houses were painted in such a striking palette so that the fishermen that once lived there could spot their homes from far out at sea.
The best view of the rows of casas pintadas is from the beach, but if you want to get a glimpse of them from below then walk along Carrer Arsenal until you reach the little river bridge. Look up and you’ll spot an array of colorful houses built along the town wall, perched high above you.
Climb to the top of the church tower
To get the best views of Villajoyosa’s old town, climb up to the top of Santa Maria de la Vila Joiosa’s recently restored church tower. The panoramic views of the town from the top stretch down into the distance where the houses meet the sea.
Make sure to check when the tower is open, as it is usually only open in the mornings Monday to Thursday from 11:30 am to 1 pm.
Although there’s no set price to visit the tower, a €2 donation is expected before you go through the lowdown door at the left of the church’s interior and climb up the stairs to the top.
The church itself is pretty too, before you leave look up and admire the gorgeously painted domes that decorate the church’s ceiling.
Tour a chocolate museum
Believe it or not, the little city of Villajoyosa is considered the chocolate capital of Spain. There are various chocolate factories in and around the town, but the most famous is the Valor Chocolate Museum.
The brand is sold all over the country and is never missing in a local cupboard. If you want to learn the secrets of the trade head to the Valor Chocolate Museum and find out all about the company’s history, as well as how the chocolate is made.
There’s also an interesting exhibition room that showcases the machinery that was involved in making their chocolate when the process was done entirely by hand. As well as information about where their cocoa is imported from and how it reaches Spain. Of course, no chocolate tour is complete without a little sampling which can be done at the end.
There is also a shop on-site so that you can purchase a few different types of chocolate that you wouldn’t otherwise find in supermarkets or candy stores around Spain.
Visit Playa del Bol Nou
This picturesque beach that is tucked into a little bay has pristine blue waters and golden sand speckled with small pebbles. It’s some 200 meters (218 yards) long and surrounded by rising cliffs, making it feel intimate and hidden away.
You’ll have to walk down to the beach from the road that runs along the cliffs above – but it’s worth the extra effort.
It’s also one of the few nudist Villajoyosa beaches.
Hike the Torres al Aguilo Trail
There are a few iconic hikes in town, but this one has the perk of not being too difficult and it passes through some gorgeous beaches.
The trail starts at Playa de Torres, one of the most popular beaches in Villajoyosa, and it ends at Playa Finestrat in Benidorm. To add to the wonder of the trail the starting point is right by the Hercule Tower, an old Roman funerary monument.
Next, you’ll be led into the mountains and past stunning coves, without losing sight of the sea, until you drop down to Finestrat Beach. There are fantastic views of Benidorm city too.
If you want to, you could hike the trail in the morning, go sightseeing in Benidorm, then hop on the tram back to Villajoyosa.
For the full map of the trail, check out the route and viewpoints of the Torres el Aguilo Trail here.
Walk a stretch of the Way of Saint James
The Camino de Santiago (or Way of Saint James) is one of the most famous pilgrimages in the world. Many routes make up the Camino de Santiago, and they all lead pilgrims to the beautiful northern Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela, which was once a religious epicenter.
As you walk around town you’ll find yourself noticing little golden shells built into the floor and yellow arrows dotted around town. These are the marks that pilgrims follow on their way to Santiago de Compostela. Don’t be surprised if you see travelers wandering through with big backpacks following the trail.
This section of the Camino de Santiago is referred to as the Camí del Peix and you can read more about the route here.
If you want to walk a part of the Way of Saint James just follow the shells and arrows, eventually they lead you to Alicante.
Go cove hopping
Thanks to Villajoyosa’s coastal location and Mediterranean landscape there are various coves in the town and nearby where you can explore hidden beaches or escape the crowds for the day.
Cala Malladeta is pebbly and secluded. It’s best for those that want to swim in a secluded area or set up chairs and an umbrella and read for the afternoon.
Another, Playa del Torres, is a stony beach surrounded by eucalyptus trees and is one of the best-known beaches in the area.
Come and celebrate, Spanish style, in Villajoyosa
There are many celebrations worth coming to Villajoyosa for, and most take place in the summer months.
In late June, the beaches come alive with crowds of locals celebrating San Juan, a religious festival that dates back centuries. They light fires on the sand and drink merrily. It’s traditional to jump in the sea at midnight too! It usually happens around June 24th, the feast day of Saint John.
Another festival worth coming for is the Moors and Christians festival which is celebrated between the 24th and 31st of July.
Each town and city has its own traditions around these dates and Villajoyosa’s recreation of the naval battle between the Barbary pirates that attacked the town in 1538 and were defeated by the Christians that lived there. The festival is more than 250 years old now.
Put these festive dates in your diary and visit when the town is alive with tradition and culture to make the most of your visit to the Costa Blanca.
Go on a day trip to Alicante
Alicante is just 35 kilometers (20 miles) away from Villayosa, so you can easily visit on a short day trip. It’s less touristy than Benidorm, so it’s the better destination of the two if you’re interested in soaking up Spanish culture.
There’s a lot of charm packed into this little city that was built around a rocky mountain that now rises imposingly over the city center.
Visit the Castle of Santa Barbara or better still, set off on a tour to the quaint and picturesque island of Tabarca from the city’s shore!
Visit one of Spain’s tourist havens, Benidorm
Benidorm is just 14 kilometers (8,5 miles) away from Villajoyosa, a short half-hour tram ride. Admittedly it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. It’s known across Spain for being a tourist haven, particularly loved by the British.
It’s quite similar to Marbella as it has lots of resorts and a long stretch of sandy beach that marks the edge of the city. The two prominent beaches in Benidorm are Playa de Poniente and Playa de Levante.
From natural coves to bustling nightlife, Benidorm is for those seeking contrast and thrill.