Elda is a city located in the province of Alicante, Spain. As of 2009, it has a total population of 55,618 inhabitants, ranking as the 7th most populous city in the province. Elda joins together with the town of Petrer with a combined population of over 85,000 inhabitants. The river Vinalopó flows through the urban area of Elda.
Elda is an industrial town, whose economic activity is based in the production and trade of footwear, especially high quality and advanced design shoes for women. They are sold in major stores and prestigious boutiques worldwide.
The making of footwear, which was entirely handmade until well into the twentieth century, attracted to the then very small town of Elda thousands and thousands of domestic migrants, especially from La Mancha. From the post civil war years and the decade of seventies, Elda grew rapidly. In the 80s and 90s, when Elda stopped growing so rapidly, the design of its spaces became more rational. Apart from the Castelar and Sagasta Squares, new venues have been built downtown, a recent Main Square, The Shoemaker’s Square and the Civic Centre . In addition, the town centre has recently been repaved, with wide passages for pedestrians and free from vehicle parking.
Worth a visit is the Old Town, there are also four other parishes scattered throughout the neighbourhoods: La Inmaculada, San Francisco, San José and San Pascual. Other tourist sites include the Footwear Museum, the Archaeological Museum, the Torre del Homenaje del castillo (a tower dating from the 12th century), Castelar Square, Count of Coloma Palace, the Town Hall and the church of Santa Ana.
The most important fiesta of the year in Elda is Moors and Christians fiesta. A celebration in which more than 6000 people take active part, one-tenth of our 60,000 inhabitants.
The valley is crisscrossed by the narrow river Vinalopó in whose basin there is a large park and playground. The city is surrounded by mountains such as Bolón, Camara, The Torreta Sierra and Bateig. It is a very popular area for hiking and climbing.