For over 3 000 years, different civilizations and their cultures have passed through Alicante and Elche. All of them have shaped these lands and left a rich legacy which can be appreciated not only in its cultural and artistic heritage, but also in the open, innovative, warm and hospitable character of their peoples.
Palmeral de Elche (The Elche Palm Grove) If there is a feature which perfectly represents Elche, it is the palm grove - a unique landscape with more than 200 000 specimens, the largest in Europe This plantation, created for agrarian purposes, dates back to the 10th Century when the Arabs moved the city to its present location. The Palmeral de Elche was recognised by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Centre in 2000.
The Misteri dÂ´Elx: A religious sacra-lyrical drama which recreates the Dormition, Assumption and Coronation of the Virgin Mary. The work is divided into two acts and is staged annually on the 14 and 15 August in the Basilica of St Mary.
It is the only work of its kind which has been performed uninterrupted from the 15th Century to the present day. In 2001, UNESCO declared it a Masterpiece in the Oral and Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, giving Elche its second award of World Heritage status.