Redován is a small inland municipality in the Vega Baja del Segura area of the province of Alicante, and lies on the south-western side of the Sierra de Callosa, one of the mountainous outcrops which jut out from the otherwise flat plain of the River Segura.
This location means that there are two very distinct types of landscape in Redován, one consisting mainly of farmland on the fertile plain and the other rising abruptly above the fruit and vegetable crops into the nature reserve of La Pilarica and the Sierra de Callosa.
It is known that the area of Redován was inhabited by the Iberians in the 4th century BC, and one of the items found at the site of their settlement, a sculpture depicting a griffin, is now on display in the Spanish national archaeological museum in Madrid. However, the modern town is commonly believed to have been founded by a Moorish captain Rebdán before the Reconquista in the mid-13th century.
The town gained its independence from Orihuela in 1490, since when it has remained small and mainly agricultural in character, although it has grown substantially over the last twenty years as more and more people have chosen it as a pleasant place to live and commute. It is well connected by road due to its proximity to the A-7 motorway, and the new AVE high-speed rail line will include a station just a couple of kilometres away in Callosa de Segura.
Among the main sights to see in the town of Redován are the 18th century Palacio de la Orden de Predicadores, now home to the Town Hall, and the Casa del Reloj, which was the previous Town Hall but now houses the central office of the Mancomunidad La Vega, an agglomeration of municipalities which includes Redován, San Miguel de Salinas, Algorfa and Jacarilla.
Also of interest is the church dedicated to San Miguel Arcángel, parts of which date back to 1396, and another smaller church stands on the higher ground behind the town itself. Visitors are also welcomed to the Semana Santa museum, and those of a more intrepid nature will be keen to explore the mountainside and numerous caves, which have been the source of many local legends.
As is the case of the other municipalities in the area, the combination of mountains and flat plains is also a great attraction to walkers and hikers, and in Redován there are many recommended routes for those like to get about on foot, on horseback or on bicycles.
In an area of such rich farmland, though, it is not surprising that some of the main attractions of Redován are gastronomic in nature. Particular favourites here include not only the locally grown fruit and veg, but also homemade meat products and seafood dishes which employ ingredients from the nearby fishing ports on the Mediterranean coast.
The rural environment also explains the abundance of hemp articles produced by local craftsmen, and this tradition is maintained every September at a festival dedicated to these skilled artisans.
The other fiestas in the annual calendar include those in honour of the Virgen de la Salud and San Miguel Arcángel, which occupy practically the whole month of September and are combined with the Moros y Cristianos events to commemorate the Reconquista of the area from the Moors in the 13th century.
In short, Redován is unlike some of its close neighbours in the south of the province of Alicante in that it has not been affected by the boom in residential tourism over the last few decades. Nonetheless, like the other towns and municipalities which cluster around the Sierra de Callosa, it has numerous attractions, and while those visiting the area might not be tempted to set up home here they are guaranteed a warm welcome and plenty to do, see and eat during a shorter-term stay!