THE long-awaited AVE now connects Orihuela and Elche with Madrid.
The high-speed train takes just 2 hours and 10 minutes to reach Elche’s Matola station from Spain’s capital and 12 minutes more to arrive at Miguel Hernandez in Orihuela.
All very well for Elche and Orihuela residents, it has been pointed out, but what about the tourists bound for the coast?
Apart from Elche and Orihuela residents the AVE will, after all, be used mostly by tourists from Madrid and other parts of Spain.
According to a report in the Spanish media, reaching hotels, apartments or second residences along the southern Alicante coast could take them as long as the AVE journey itself.
Both AVE stations are only 30 kilometres from the coast but travellers using public transport would need to take buses to reach Torrevieja, for instance.
Depending on connections, and in the worst circumstances, this could add another three hours to their journey from Elche or around two hours from Orihuela.
Taxis would be time-savers but will add €40 to the €71.10 AVE fare from Orihuela and between €40 and €50 from Elche.
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