Pantano de Elche

DateJune 2022
LocationElche, España

The Elche reservoir is a gravity dam in the shape of an arch in plan, built in two sections taking advantage of a rocky promontory in its middle part. It was built in the seventeenth century on the Vinalopó river, between the Sierra de Elche and the Castellar hill, in the province of Alicante (Spain). The Elche Reservoir occupies a part of the district of Ferriol and Carrús, from where one of the Routes of Tourist Interest of the city of Elche begins.) Given its architectural antiquity, it is considered the first arched dam in Europe since the Romans.


The sierra has an area of 80 hectares, with a perimeter of more than 5 km and is composed of two hills. The westernmost of them, and the smallest, is known as Cerro del Molinet or Cerro de Santa Ana, because there was a chapel dedicated to St. Anne, demolished in 1823 and whose remains can still be seen. These hills are limestone massifs, with steep slopes and a large number of faults, which makes the terrain unstable. Together with the Benacantil and Monte Tossal, the Sierra Grossa is a decisive geographical landmark in the configuration and development of Alicante.