The VCV visits Orihuela for the thirteenth time. The first was in 1947, when the Orihuela native Bernardo Ruiz was a prophet in his own land, winning stage 5, which started in Orihuela. Other cyclists who have won in Orihuela are Miguel María Lasa (1970), Leif Mortensen (1972) and Edvald Boasson Hagen (2019).
To speak of Cycling in Orihuela is to speak of Bernardo Ruiz, one of the great pioneers of this sport in Spain. Four times Spanish champion, winner of La Vuelta a España in 1948 and third in the Tour de France in 1952. After his retirement, he was sports director and ran a bicycle shop in Orihuela.
Orihuela has traditionally been an agricultural town. Especially irrigated crops such as oranges and lemons. With the passing of time it has evolved into an economy more focused on the service sector and tourism is nowadays the main driving force of Orihuela’s economy.
The historic centre of the city was declared a Monumental Historic-Artistic Site (BIC) in 1969, one of the first to be declared in Spain. Historic buildings, churches, palaces and even part of the original wall that protected the city make up this historic centre.
Orihuela is a town where a multitude of sports are practised from a grassroots level. The athlete Carmen Marco, bronze medalist in the 4×100 in the Krakow Europeans, has recently been elected sportswoman of the year; and Orihuela CF is the team of reference in the municipality.
Orihuela’s cuisine is made with products from its fertile market garden. Typical of these lands are cocido con pelotas, turkey stew, paella huertana, stewed beans and the most typical dish of the area: arroz y costra (rice and crust).