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Archive for April 4th, 2016

Casares

Located on a hilltop between the Ronda mountains, the Costa del Sol and Gibraltar, Casares is one of the most beautiful villages in the province of Málaga, a fact which leads to the status of being a Historic-Artistic Site in 1978. The origins of Casares date back to Roman times, when Julius Caesar ordered its construction as a show of gratitude for having been healed by the waters of the Baths of La Hedionda. However, the current town dates from the time of the Arabs. Outstanding among its historic sights are the ruins of an Arab castle, the church of Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación, from the 17th century; the convent of Santa Catalina, from the 16th century; the caves of Ballesteros, the caves of Hedionda and the Sima de los Huesos (abyss of bones).

Casares is a pleasant white village to stroll around. Visit Blas Infante birthplace, Iglesia de San Sebastian, near the square or climb up via Puerta Calle Arrabal, to the Castle, a ruined church, Iglesia de la Encarnación, now Centro Cultural Blas Infante and the old cemetery. There are also number of signed walks just outside the village. Further afield there are beautiful and well-kept beaches such as the Playa de la Sal. There are also golf courses in Casares and neighboring towns.

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Cadaqués

Situated right on the Cap de Creus peninsula, Cadaqués is one of the most symbolic places on the gironese Costa Brava. Its rocky coast, fringed by beautiful beaches and quiet coves, forms one of its main attractions, together with the incredible landscape offered by the Cap de Creus natural park. At the head of Cadaqués bay you can enjoy its historic quarter, with a Mediterranean air and deep seaside flavour. The source of inspiration for internationally famous painters and artists for decades, today this centre enjoys an intense cultural life, as witnessed by its many museums and art galleries, among which the Salvador Dali house-museum is outstanding.

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Setenil de las bodegas

Setenil de las Bodegas is a town (pueblo) in the province of Cádiz, Spain, famous for its dwellings built into rock overhangs above the Rio Trejo. It has a distinctive setting along a narrow river gorge. The town extends along the course of the Rio Trejo with some houses being built into the rock walls of the gorge itself, created by enlarging natural caves or overhangs and adding an external wall.

Modern Setenil evolved from a fortified Moorish town that occupied a bluff overlooking a sharp bend in the Rio Trejo northwest of Ronda. The castle dates from at least the Almohad period in the 12th century. However, the site was certainly occupied during the Roman invasion of the region in the 1st century AD.

The full name of Setenil de las Bodegas dates from the 15th century, when new Christian settlers, in addition to maintaining the Arab olive and almond groves, introduced vineyards. The first two crops still flourish in the district but the once flourishing wineries—bodegas— were wiped out by the phylloxera insect infestation of the 1860s, which effectively destroyed most European vine stocks.

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Olvera

At the tip of the “White towns route“, the city of Olvera is located in the province of Cadiz, in the northwest of the Serranía Gaditana area, also near the borders of the provinces of Seville and Malaga.

The hills surrounding Olvera are full of olive groves that are said to provide the best extraction of olive oils in Andalusia. In recent years it has received the award of the “Denominación de Origen de la Sierra de Cádiz”, which is a standard that is recognised by participants including nearby towns of Setenil, Algonodales, Alcalá del Valle, Torre Al-Haquime etc.

Of great interest within the municipality is a large colony of Andalusian griffon vultures (Gyps fulvus) to be found within the natural reserve of the “Peñon de Zaframagón”, a huge rock outcrop that is located 14km to the northwest of the town centre.

The main monument of this city is itself. A phrase that exemplifies this reality is “OLVERA is a street, a church and a castle, BUT what a street, what a church and what a castle!”, for that reason Olvera was declared “A Protected Area of Artistic and Historical Importance” in 1983.

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