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Hiking in Valle de Ricote – one of the best-kept secrets in Murcia

One of the reasons why Valle de Ricote is known and valued is its variety and abundance of natural and rural landscapes. The mountains, cliffs, forests, river, villages and orchards in the area embrace our senses at all times. The whole valley is lush with fertility, thanks to the River Segura running through it.

The Valle de Ricote (Ricote Valley), which is about 25 km north-west of capital Murcia City, was the last Moorish redoubt in Spanish Levante. This is one of the most beautiful and undiscovered parts of the fertile irrigated plains around the River Segura. The towns of Ricote, Ojós, Abarán, Blanca, Ulea, Villanueva del Segura and Archena, surrounded by fruit and citrus orchards, transport us to an ideal world. A fertile plain that clings to its Arab heritage, as shown by the numerous remains from this period, including its irrigation systems.

Viewpoint route

One of the best ways of experiencing Valle de Ricote is by walking along its paths and discovering its best panoramic views. We suggest you follow this route and enjoy the dreamiest viewpoints of the valley in Abarán, Blanca, Ricote, Ulea, Ojós and Villanueva.


Nestled at the end of the Valle de Ricote, the town of Ricote is surrounded by vineyards, fruit orchards and chalky mountains. Ricote is a jumble of Moorish houses crowded around a central church on the hills of the mountain. It is the only town in the valley that doesn’t sit directly on the river. Ricote maintains a rich gastronomical tradition in which the local wine is the protagonist.


Right in the heart of the Ricote Valley, on the banks of the River Segura, lies Blanca, known to our ancestors as La Negra or “The Black”, due to the colour of the mountain where it lies. Blanca has retained its legacy as a producer of esparto grass.

Mirador del Alto de Bayna – the viewpoint is supported by a large 30-meter metallic bridge over the Segura River.


Abarán is well known for its waterwheels, being the Spanish municipality with the biggest number of still working waterwheels and also the municipality with the hugest working waterwheel in Europe. Don’t forget that, next to waterwheels, you will have the privilege of admiring the huertas -irrigated areas-, irrigation ditches and palm groves. A treat for your senses.

Mirador Paseo de la Ermita is a view point accessible from Doctor Molina, street right next to plaza de la Zarzuela. This urban viewpoint, in which there is a garden and the Santos Médicos chapel (Cosme y Damián), looks over the terraced orchards and vast meander of the Segura river, with Sierra del Oro in front of it.


If you enjoy love stories, you can’t miss the Salto de la Novia in Ojós. A legend tells of how a noble Christian girl threw herself down the rocks of this beautiful setting after losing her lover, who was an officer of the Castilian troops fighting against the Moorish army which tried to conquer Ulea. Due to its hauntingly beautiful views and its special charm, this is one of the most splendid places in Valle de Ricote.


Ulea is a land of contrasts where the verdure of the Ricote valley stands out against the aridness of the surrounding mountains. Its Muslim heritage can be felt throughout the valley in things such as the steep and winding street layout, the murmur of water in the fountains, water wheels, Moorish water storage cellars and the hubbub of folk going about their everyday business.

Mirador del Gurugú – this viewpoint, located pretty much at the back of the valley, has clear views of Azud del Golgo and of the entire orchard of Ulea.

Villanueva del Río Segura

This agricultural community just a stone’s throw away from Archena and Ulea is principally a fruit-growing area. Villanueva’s charm owes much to the aromas of the valley perfuming its streets and the refreshing waters of its summer baths, all another part of the charm of the Ricote valley.

Mirador de la Plaza de la Fábrica – the viewpoint is in a large park with a recreational area and great views of the orchard of Villanueva, the Segura river and Sierra de Verdelena.

If you are an enthusiast of good food, cultural visits, and outdoor sports such as hiking, rafting or climbing then you are at the right place.