Parcent is the ideal place for lovers of nature, history, gastronomy and adventurous sports. Situated on a hill in the Vall de Pop Valley, providing spectacular mountain and valley views, especially in Februaury when the valley is transformed into pink and white from the abundance of almond blossom, Parcent is in a truly wonderful location. As the famous local author Gabriel Miro (1879 – 1930) once said, “a paradise among mountains”. It was here, in this typically Spanish village, by the river Xaló, surrounded by mountains where he wrote many famous novels such as “Sigüenza’s book”.
Parcent takes its name from Latin origins, and was later a Moorish town until the forces of James 1 of Aragon conquered it in 1256. In 1529, the pirates of Red Beard devastated the place. The decree of expulsion of 1609 caused a new uprising in which the Moslems of Parcent joined with those of Laguart and Alcalá and they seized the castle, although finally they were defeated.
The local economy relies chiefly on agricultural, with plentiful cultivation of almond trees, orange trees, carob trees and both red and white grapes. Today agriculture also combines with tourism, and the village regularly attracts many tourists throughout the year, having numerous restaurants and bars to suit all tastes and budgets, along with all the shops and facilities you could possibly need. The more adventurous visitor can try their hand at paragliding from the nearby Coll of Rates mountain and of course, enjoy the hiking, cycling, mountaineering or birdwatching that regularly attracts numerous participants. The best views of the village are to be had from the summit of the nearby Coll de Rates mountain, along with spectacular views of the entire Jallon Valley.
This charming village with a population of just over 1100, has steep streets of typically Moorish architecture, and offers many diverse cultural and tourist attractions. Such as the Church of the Virgin, situated in the village center. This historic place of worship has undergone several transformations since its creation in 1535, originally built by the Moors, now converted to Christianity. Another fine example of cultural and architectural importance is the Town Hall, which dates from 1912 and is overlooked by the house in which Gabriel Miro lived.
Fiestas occur throughout the year in Parcent, with the notable ones being at Easter, and again throughout the second week of August. This special time sees locals celebrate with lots of eating, drinking, music, dancing, costumes and fireworks, often lasing into the early hours of the morning.
Each Monday sees a street market, where the typical local products can be bought. Parcent boasts several excellent “Bodegas” offering quality wine from the local grapes. The village restaurants offer fabulous traditional gastronomy at very reasonable prices, such as “l’espencat”, a delicious cold dish of baked peppers, aubergines and tomatoes, seasoned with olive oil and a touch of crushed garlic . As for the desserts, the Arabian influence is much to the fore with excellent sweets made from local almonds and backfilled with sweet potato, or in its buns and almond-shaped biscuits.
Parcent offers the visitor a taste of “real Spain”, and guarantees many happy memories.