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Due to its rich history Guadalest is one of the most visited tourist spots in Spain, there are two parts to the town one being the fortress itself, which is set high on the mountain, this was were the population of the town lived within the boundary walls with the only entrance and exit being via the gate of St José. The second part of the town being the moors houses, extending from the gate of St José. Once in the town you will find plenty of little streets and squares which give the towns its special appeal. To spend a day in Guadalest is truly a delightful experience with plenty to see and do.

As Guadalest is such popular town for visitors and tourists you will find a large selection of gift shops to buy souvenirs and local produce, museums, bars and restaurants. The local residents have devoted them selves to tourism, being the main source of income for the town.

Guadalest dates back to 715 when the moors settled here and gave Guadalest its name. It was Jaime I that conquered the town in 1238 but its wasn’t until 1245 after he had defeated all the counter attacks from the moors living in the neighbouring areas of Vall de Gallinera, Alcala, Confrides and Pego was the town then occupied. In 1246 the moors attacked and were once again defeated and expelled from the kingdom. In 1275 King Jaime I passed law that any Moor wishing to change his abode must obtain permission from the Christians.

Why not combine a trip to the town of Guadalest with a visit to a unique animal park located just on the outskirts.The Ark was opened in 1998 as a sanctuary for wild animals and to date as rescued in the region on 300 wild animals.

Ex circus animals such as lions and tigers, exotic abandoned pets and mistreated animals that have been discovered all over Spain, out of work primates or laboratory 'guinea pigs' from all over Europe have fortunately found there way to El Arca (The Ark). Its not really a zoo but a wild life rescue centre solely dedicated to the animal welfare and is open to the public to help raise awareness to animal cruelty and to raise funds to support this wonderful centre.

With some 55 different species, the park is home to around 250 animals including adult lions and cubs, tigers, cheetahs, snow leopards, panthers, jaguars and other large wild cats, rescued snakes, pythins, boas and a cobra, large fully grown iguanas, Alligators, prairie dogs, pole cats, racoons, porcupines, arctic foxes, wolves, dingoes, ostriches, emus, deer, anteaters skunks and a blind pony.

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