Hermitage of ‘San Rafael’
Length: 1,3 km (round trip)
The excursion to ‘la ermita de San Rafael’, in Ráfales, starts in the upper part of the village. Take the road past the cemetery and the track that leads to the hermitage starts to the left, next to a clay embankment.
The climb is steep all the way, but not too long, so it’s defined as a low-difficulty trail. In the first stretch, several ancient croplands can be seen, with terraces containing the remains of olive and almond trees. However, we soon move into areas of pines, holm oaks and bush vegetation. There are areas full of large fallen rocks and rocky shelters with fire trails to be found halfway.
In the last stretch, the first cypresses appear just as the hermitage comes into view. At this point, 100 metres to the right, a stone pond was carved into the rock and used to provide water for the hermit. The hermitage, built in honour of San Rafael, has some distinguishing elements: a peculiar area under a porch and strong, ancient columns. The building is surrounded by stunning panoramic views.