Almería isboth a historical and modern city. Located on the coast, it has some spectacularhistorical, medieval buildings alongside some very modern ones. Its Al-Andaluslegacy can be seen everywhere, including in the surrounding villages and in itsgastronomy. Surrounded by mountinous territory it was used to film Spaghetti Westernsin the seventies.
Almería has been inhabited since the bronze age,some ancient caves with painting on the walls still exist. The Phoenicians, theRomans, the Iberians, the Cartaginenses and the Moors all once occupied Almeriauntil it finally fell to the Spanish 'Reyes Católicos' in 1489. A visitto the city offers you the chance to visit remains from all these periods.
Almería is the lightest province in Spain with 3,127 hours of daylight a year. Its warm temperatures have contributed to its economy in 2 significant ways - agriculture and tourism.
What to see in Almería
Walks: The prettiest streets to stroll along are 'Las Ramblas', the'Paseo de Almería'. A walk around the San Nicolás Salmerónpark is also very pleasant. Las Ramblas go all the way to the port and the Almadrabillasbeach.
Palaces and Castles: La Alcazaba (Arabic fortress) -located in the historical quarter, consists of three areas:
- TheMuslim Medina: Built at the foot of the la Alcazaba in 955.
- Houses,baths, hermitages dating back to the Reyes Católicos and remains of theAl-Mutasin palace.
- The Christian Area established by theReyes Católicos.
La Alcazaba: This fortresswas built on top of a hill to get a good view of the horizon so that the citycould be well defended against invaders.
Remains from the Moor occupationof the city: These can be found in the historical quarter starting in 'laplaza Vieja' (the old square) where you can find the townhall, el Barrio de laChanca (the Chanca neighbourhood), the San Nicolás Salmerón Park(the Alcazaba gardens), San Juan church (includes the remains of a 15th centurymosque wall and a 12th century tomb) and the arabic baths.
Cathedrals and churches in Almería
- Nuestra Señorade la Encarnación Cathedral: 15th century - its tower 'el Sol dePortocarrero' is the symbol of the city.
- Santo Domingo Convent: 16th century
- Las Puras Convent: 16thcentury
- San Juan Parish Church: 16th century - locatedin the 'Plaza de las Chafarinas' (las Chafarinas square) one of the best historicalsites in the city, it was built on the remains of a 10th century mosque.
- LasClaras Convent (also known as Convent of la Encarnación): 18thcentury - it has been recognised as an artistic historical monument.
- Santo Domingo Convent: 16th century.
- SantiagoParish Church: 16th century
- San Pedro el Viejo Parish Church: (now known as the church 'del Sagrado Corazón')
The archeological museum; the Capitular (Chapter House) Museum; the Religious Sculptures Museum; the Morera Art Museum.
- The Villaespesa PublicLibrary: It holds part of the Almeria Museum's archeological archiveson prehistory.
- The Provincial History Archive Collection : It holds information on the province's ancient history.
- The OliveOil Museum: Located in the historical quarter in a 19th century statelyhome. At the end of a visit you get the opportunity to taste a variety of differenttypes of olive oil.
Stately homes from the Christian period
There are a number of stately homes from the Christian period which are worth visiting. They are all located in the Barrio de la Musalla (the Musalla neighbourhood):
- Casa de las Mariposas (the Butterfly House): Located in the 'Puerta de Purchena'
- The CasinoCultural
- The Cervantes theatre
- Casade la Música (the Music House): nowadays the tourism office.
- Vizacondede Almansa Palace
- Casa de los Puche: 17th and 18thcentury, located in la plaza de Bendicho (Bendicho square).
- DonFrancisco Jover y Tovar: The historical archive centre for the province.
Palacio Arzobispal (the Archbishop's palace)
Opposite the cathedral, a very austere building with fortified towers. It has an interesting main door.
What to buy in Almería
Mainly pottery and wickerwork (pottery in Níjar and Albox and marble in Mácael and Albanchez). Also good for fresh local fruit and vegetables.
Hotels and accommodation in Almería
Click on any of the following links: Hotelsin Costa del Sol, Hotelsin Nerja, Paradorin Mojacar, ParadorAntequera, ParadorNerja
Interesting places and villages in the province
- Los Velez:
- Velez Blanco:Caves with ancient paintings (declared a world heritage site).
- Chirivel: Castilian village.
- El Villar: Roman remains, the Via Augusta pasesthrough the village.
- Velez Rubio: Village with Arabic origins.
- Alto Almanzora: Las Estancias and los Filabres mountain range.
- Bacares: Traditionally a mining village, originally Phoenician. The weapons for the Arabicarmies were made here. Berebere castle, arabic style houses, Mudéjar church16th century, Cristo del Bosque church: Festivities held on 14th September. Ruraltourism.
- Purchena: Veryinteresting for its remains, landscape and hsitory. In Prehistory it was a walledcity with a cementary. The Arabs founded the city in 900.
- Serón:Palaeolithic and Neolithico remains, Morcinillos caves
- Medio Almanzora: Interior, mountinous
- Albanchez:Village with Arabic origins, well known for the quality of its fruit and for itsmarble industry.
- Líjar: The Moro cave: Caverns withstalactites y stalagmites.
- Macael: Very important for itsmarble. There is evidence that the Romans, the Phoenicians and the Arabs usedthese marble quarries. The marble form here was also used in the constrution ofsome of the most important cathedrals in Spain.
- Olula del Río:Moorish remains.
- BajoAlmanzora: Valleys and coast
- Antas: 'El Argar' remainsfrom the Bronze age.
- Almanzora Caves: Zájara caveswith wall paintings. (declared a world heritage site).
- RíoNacimiento: Sierra Nevada and Sierra de los Filabres, valleys and river source.
- Fiñana:Diverse Arabic remains.
- Gergal:Fortified Arab town
- Abla: Village built on the edge of ahigh mountain.
- Tres Villas
- Filambres: Filabres mountain range. Villages with Arabic style houses and Moorish remains.
- Tabernas: Desert area. Spaghetti Westerns were filmed here.
- Lucaicena de las Torres: Located in the Alhamilla mountainrange, originally Roman and later Arabic, traditionally a mining area. Vineyardsand rural tourism.
- Levante: Coast lots of tourist resorts
- Carboneras: Pretty beach,industrial city (textiles, cement, agriculture, fishing, tourism...)
- Garrucha: Touristic, it is the second most important fishing port in Almeria - italso has a marina.
- Mojácar: Originally an Arabicvillage, it has typical white houses, built on a hill. Tourism has spoilt someif its original charm.
- Vera: Nudist beaches.
- RíoGrande: On the coast.
- Alto Andarax: Las Alpujarras mountain range.
- Laujar de Andarax:The prettiest and most interesting village historically. Located between the SierraNevada and the Sierra de Gádor it has some amazing views. The capital ofLas Alpujarras. Vineyards, mountain springs - touristic.
- Paternadel Río: Rich in mountain springs and the highest point in theLas Alpujarras mountain range at 2.609 metres.
- Alcolea-Darrical: In the Sierra de Gádor, between the Sierra Nevada and the sea.
- Medio Andarax: Fertile area next to the Andaraxriver.
- Alhama de Almería: In the Sierra de Gádor.Roman and Arabic remains.
- Albolody: Prehistóricsremains. Beautiful Andaluz village built on the edge of a high mountain, verysteep, narrow streets.
- Bajo Andarax: Interior, valleys and rivers.
- Benahadux: Iberian remains.
- Huércalde Almería
- Pechina: Roman and Arabic remains.
- SantaFe de Mondujar: Bronze age remains.
- Campode Dalías: Sierra de Gádor and mediterranean coastal area.
- Dalías: Arabic baths.
- Enix:Villagewith typical white houses. Very pretty and good eating places.
- ElEjido: Roman and Arabic remains. Known for its vast greenhouses whichform a sea of plastic - also touristic.
- Roquetas de Mar: The thirdlargest in terms of population size (40,000). A pretty, modern city with an attractivemarina, beaches, hotels and other tourist facilities. Also Punta Entinas-Sabinarnatural reserve: a natural area with salt mines, small lakes, herons, flamingos...
- Vícar: Roman and Arabic remains
- Níjar: Coastal area.
- Níjar: Marina, beaches, good shops- touristic.
- Aguamarga: Pretty fishing village popular withtourists - good eating places.
- Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata:The largest coastal mountain range. It also makes up the most important groupof volcanic mountains in Spain. It has 40 kms of coast with over a thousand differenttypes of plants, also rich in wildlife.
- Torre Garcia
- SanJosé: One of the most important costal villages, numerous hotelsand restaurants. Very touristic.
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