Castillo de La Mola / Santuario de Santa Magdalena (Novelda)

“All the routes are downhill and with a nice tailwind!
(except the bits with climbing and a headwind).”
Remember to always take a sense of humour…

If you look towards Elche from Gran Alacant you will see acres of flat lands which while useful to the cyclist do not always offer the greatest vistas especially if like me you are a rider of shortish stature. Believe me I see rows of bushes more than I need to. Therefore I am always on the lookout for rides that take me to lovely vistas. One such destination is around 45km from Gran Alacant and just 4km outside of the town of Novelda. There, at 360m above sea-level stands “Castillo de la Mola” and the “Santuario de Santa Maria Magdalena.“ The design of the Santuario was inspired by the style of the architect Gaudi and together with the view the place is really worth the ride.

There are a few route options to get to Novelda, this is one of the simplest ones.
You can also see the route on Strava:

This ride starts off heading for the Northern ring road around Elche and once over the Puente De El Bamil-Lenari take the first exit on to Cami de los Magros. You then follow this road all the way to the CV-84 which climbs from Elche to Aspe. If you are new to cycling I can recommend this climb as a good one to start with as it is just under

5 km and although it is challenging the gradient is fairly steady all the way with no really steep sections. Once you get to the top you can start to see why the effort has been worth it. It’s all downhill from here (joking) as you follow the road all the way to Novelda. The road splits in two lanes – right lane going to Aspe and left continuing to Novelda. The instructions are painted on the road.

Apart from the magnificent architecture of the church of Santa Magdalena you will also begin to see some of the lovely views in the area around Aspe. There is a nice cafe at the church for refuelling. After a few refreshing drinks, it’s time to return home.

You can of course just follow the same route back but there is a nice alternative route via Fonte Del Llop Golf Course where I assume the 19th hole must be very good as I rarely see anyone playing golf.

Head back to Novelda and then on to Aspe. You are looking for the CV-847 to take you to the golf course where you take the Cami de Monfort which brings you back to the CV-86 (North Ring Road Elche). Head back towards Torrellano but take the first road down through the Elche industrial park. At the bottom you are on the N-340 for a short while before turning off and heading for the road alongside the Airport runway. From there head for El Altet and then Los Arenales and you are almost home.

Distance: approx. 100km. Moving time approx. 4 hours.
Difficulty: Medium/Hard

Outward Route: Balsares-Torrellano-Cami Cementeri-CV86(Ronda Norte Elche)-CV8651-Puente De El Bimil-Lenari-Cami De Los Magros-Cami Viejo De Aspe-CV84-N325-Novelda-Castillo De La Mola.

Return Route: Casillo De La Mola-Novelda-N325-CV846-Aspe-CV825-CV847-Font Del Llop Golf-Cami De Monfort-CV850-CV86-Elche Prq Ind-N340-CV852-CV849(Airport Runway Road)-El Altet-Los Arenales-Gran Alacant.

You can find information about several weekly rides on our Facebook page Gran Alacant Road Cyclist “Bici Gran Alacant” and also your local bike shop For Riders have rides and events on their Facebook page.