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Vandellòs and L'Hospitalet de l'Infant receive two Blue Trail 2024 flags

The Jonquet Coastal Path and the Masboquera-Castelló path have been awarded this prize by the Association for Environmental and Consumer Education.

Foto de Vandellòs and L'Hospitalet de l'Infant receive two Blue Trail 2024 flags.

The municipality of Vandellòs i L'Hospitalet de l'Infant has been awarded the Blue Flag 2024 for the Jonquet Coastal Path, which links the Arenal and Torn beaches, and for the Masboquera-Castelló inland path. This award is granted by the Association for Environmental and Consumer Education (ADEAC) with the aim of "rewarding and recognising the conservation and recovery of paths and itineraries, transformed into valuable resources for interpretation and environmental education, as well as for the enjoyment of nature through sustainable recreational, sporting and tourist activities".

To obtain the Blue Trail award, a set of criteria and indicators must be met, which are grouped into four categories: characteristics of the trails and routes; information, signage and infrastructures on the trails; conservation and management of the natural and cultural heritage; and public use of the trails.

The Blue Trail 2024 Blue Flag awards ceremony, which took place on Wednesday 13 March in Las Rozas de Madrid, was attended by the Councillor for Tourism, Elidia López.

The ADEAC, which is the same association that evaluates the quality of beaches (Blue Flag), has awarded the Blue Flag-2024 award to a total of 128 footpaths throughout Spain, 5 of which are in Catalonia (one in the Girona area and 4 in Tarragona). Vandellòs i L'Hospitalet de l'Infant is the only municipality in the province of Tarragona to have received two awards.

The Jonquet Coastal Path in L'Hospitalet de l'Infant was awarded this distinction for the first time in 2017 and since then has managed to renew it year after year; and the Masboquera-Castelló Path obtained it for the first time last year.

The Jonquet Coastal Path

The Jonquet Coastal Path is a 3,420 m low-difficulty path that links two Blue Flag beaches: Arenal and Torn, in L'Hospitalet de l'Infant. It runs parallel to the coast and more than half of the route crosses the Area of Natural Interest (PEIN) of La Rojala- Playa del Torn, where the islet of Torn is located, a small rocky promontory attached to the beach that still preserves the remains of an old watchtower from the 16th century.

In the embryonic dunes to the south of the Arenal beach there are plants such as Maresia nana, a small protected herbaceous plant, and a good representation of the bufalaga marina (Thymelaea hirsuta). In Cala Bea there is a machine gun nest built during the Civil War to protect the coast from an attack that never took place. On the beach of El Torn there is a very high and well-formed line of dunes, with dune-fixing plants such as reeds and sea lilies.

The PEIN of La Rojala-Playa del Torn is an area of natural interest since 1996, to protect a terrestrial part of Mediterranean coastal forest, and a marine part up to 30 m deep with the presence of Posidonia oceanica meadows. The remains of the leaves of this plant are often found on the sand.

The Masboquera - Castelló trail

This trail, 4.490 m. and of low difficulty, starts with a slight ascent to the village of Masboquera, with low houses and narrow streets, where several walking and mountain bike routes start, and reaches the medieval centre of Castelló, which has buildings recovered by a local association (the Associació Masia de Castelló), which works to revitalise and enhance the value of this site, carrying out restoration work and festive and cultural events throughout the year (such as the Pessebre dels Estels and the Rústic Festa), as well as activities that raise awareness of local traditions (gastronomic, cultural and ethnographic).

The return of this circular route follows the old cobbled path, of great natural and heritage value, with a slight descent that allows you to comfortably reach the center of Masboquera.

Along the route we find landscapes of pine trees and undergrowth characteristic of the coastal mountain area. Birds, insects and small reptiles typical of the inland landscape near the sea are influenced by the vegetation of the area. There are also areas of cultivation, olive trees and nuts, with related architectural elements, such as dry-stone margins and shelters.