Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Sierra de Aracena (Huelva)

The Natural Park of Sierra de Aracena y Picos de Aroche is a natural area located in the north of Huelva province declared a Natural Park by the Junta de Andalusia on July 28, 1989.

It is characterised by extensive forest cover, high rainfall, a mild climate and natural and cultural heritage that arouses curiosity and interest of the visitors. Inside the park is possible to observe mammals such as the Iberian lynx, mongoose, genet or the elusive otter. The bird life is also diverse: you can see, among others, vultures, kites and black storks.

Gastronomically this area is universally known for its Iberian pork products, such as Iberian ham.



Castle Hill, which hosts the Priory Church and the remains of the old fortress. Cave of Wonders, karst cave with guided tours of more than one kilometre. Casino Arias Montano: work from 1910 built by Anibal Gonzalez. Old Town Hall: medieval building, from the XVI century. Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, is the oldest parish church built in Gothic style in Aracena between the XIII and XV centuries, with a Mudejar tower attached. Church of Carmen: the XVI century Mudejar temple. Cabildo: quadrangular building erected in the XV and XVI. Church of Santa Catalina (former Jewish synagogue XVI century), Church of Santo Domingo (XVI century) and the Bishop's Palace Moya (XVII).


Fortification badly damaged, but compensates his visit and the way up for the observation deck offering a magnificent view of the mountains. In its Romanesque chapel built on the remains of a Roman lar, there's a plaque in honour of the Emperor Augustus. The Church of the Madeleine offers visitors an altarpiece of the painter Alejo Fernandez (XIII).

Santa Olalla de Cala

The castle has an imposing appearance, crowning a hill overlooking the town, built on a large floor flanked by ten towers. The oak tree at the entrance of the Dehesa de San Francisco, aged between 400 and 500 years, and gigantic , is a clear example of the predominant native vegetation pasture.


Arab resonances are in both its name and in its path, was once a fortified town by the Almohads, whose wall fragments are preserved today as the Tower of Flour. Zufre offers the visitor within the urban area, civil buildings of great interest, the Church of the Immaculate Conception and the Town Hall, both attributed to Hernan Ruiz and declared as an Historic Artistic Site. Outside the village you can visit the Chapel of Santa Zita, and 8 miles away the Chapel of Our Lady of the Port, patron of the town.


Standing on one of the hills the XIV century castle, fully restored. It houses a museum with archaeological and antique furniture. Already in the city centre we find the Saviour's Parish Church (XVI century), moorish-style National Monument. Mills area with beautiful landscapes and the remains of a Roman road.

Almonaster la Real

Castle and tenth century mosque (historic-artistic monument): one of the few Arab fortresses that remains from the Caliphate, and the latest bullring, built over the courtyard, from where you can see a beautiful images of the town and its green surroundings. The town has a variety of housing types with Gothic, Moorish and Renaissance. The Puente Romano shares the spotlight with other buildings such as Casa Palacio de Miguel Tenorio de Castilla (XIX century), the rectory (XVIII century) or the Church of San Martín (XIV century), with the cover of Forgiveness Manueline . Ermita de Santa Eulalia of Merida built on a Roman mausoleum in Santa Eulalia plain, located in a typical mountain landscape of oaks. In the surroundings you can enjoy one of the best views of the Sierra in the Cerro de San Cristobal (917 m).

Cumbres Mayores
Preserved on top of a castle fortified perimeter monumental, called Sancho El Bravo, which encloses an area of one hectare after its crenellated walls ten metres high and three metres thick. It was declared a National Monument in 1985. Church of San Miguel with Gothic and Renaissance chapels.


Remains of a castle whose importance attest the abundance of towers and thick walls. In the XVI century in this town were erected defensive bastions, of which remain the forts of San Felipe, dedicated to Philip II, and St. John, dedicated to Don Juan de Austria, both restored and opened to visitors. The road to the Bates delights with beautiful views of the river valley Murtigas in our journey towards the final point of the route, the village of Aroche.


Surrounded by a huge walled area of the XVII century, which is not less interesting to most emblematic of the strengths of the Banda Galician Castle Weapons. Originally from the Almoravid period (XII century), suffered after major reforms at the hands of Spanish and Portuguese, given its proximity to the volatile border. In the early XIX century also housed in the courtyard of a bullring, where they continue to celebrate bullfights and horse shows. The Church of the Assumption, Convent of the Cilla and Marble Cross and the Altarpiece of the Church or the Cross by Cardinal Mendoza are some works of art that can be visited.



Peña de Arias Montano (rocky promontory with beautiful views), located a few kilometres from Alájar, the ongoing work of the rock boring water and salts dissolved in the liquid crystal, have resulted in this space, with the coexistence of several caves and rock formations, and different areas of interest such as the Shrine of Our Lady of the Angels surrounded by fountains.

Castaño del Robledo

Cobbled and narrow streets, with houses of Renaissance and Baroque style welcome to the 'Monument', the unfinished church since the XVIII century and today is fully integrated in the landscape.


It preserves a historic centre enhanced by the green of the gardens that surround it. This wealth horticultural needs of the spring which rises in the heart of town, the Fountain of the Twelve Pipes (1903), a natural element in the historic Plaza El Coso, near the Church of the Holy Spirit (XVIII century) and its spectacular belfry.


The Parish Church, with its neoclassical and baroque tower silhouette. The typical houses of the Sierra surrounded by a large mass of brown, pastures and orchards make this village one of the great unknown to many people.


The pasture coexist with its neighbours in a perfect harmony of respect. The tall steeple of the neoclassical Church of the Immaculate Conception shows the placid life and the contours of this beautiful town of 800 inhabitants. From this privileged vantage point is dominated by green areas surrounding the town.

Santa Ana la Real

Joyarancón Jets: his fifty metres make it the highest waterfall in the whole region and a show in the rainy season, in which the stream falls hard from above. The jets are located next to the road that connects Santa Ana with Castaño del Robledo, a space where nature floods everything, with easy access path for the arrival on foot.


The Chapel of Santa Brigida (XV century) is a viewpoint of the village of Galaroza, nestled in a valley of chestnut and fruit trees. The rumour of his sources and charming come with us on a visit to this corner of the mountains. In the Ermita del Carmen (XVI century) there is a statue of the saint patron of the town. Another recommended building is the Parish Church of the Immaculate Conception (XVI century) neoclassical Doric built on ground French or Latin cross.


The gastronomy of the Sierra has a star that shines: Iberian ham, protected designation of origin comprising 31 municipalities of the Sierra. In Aracena there is now a Museum of Ham, situated in the heart of the town, offering a complete interpretation of the cultural and culinary heritage of the region.

Ham rods are added, chorizo in ​​particular, the sausages, blood sausages and other cured and fresh meats. Winter gazpacho flavoured with coriander.

Mushrooms are an important element in the kitchen, as the Sierra is considered one of the most productive mycological sites in Andalusia, visited today by collectors from various countries. Tanas, chanterelles and gallipiernos spring after autumn rains, while the precious Gurumel is the mushroom par excellence of these places. It is considered a culinary excellence and has its season in February and March, when served in towns like Encinasola.

Goat cheese, rosemary and lavender honey, chestnuts and walnuts, used in stews and pastries, are other typical products, and in Arroyomolinos there is an excellent production of virgin olive oil. Digestive anise of different graduation and local production. Spirits of figs, cherry or Bruno, like those of Higuera de la Sierra. Ranging from dry anise brandy or fruit spirits up as the blackberry, raspberry and acorn.

  • Aracena Park   4*   84,50€
  • Finca Valbono   3*   84,00€
  • Posada de Valdezufre   3*   70,00€
  • La Era de Aracena   3*   70,00€
  • Sierra de Aracena   2*   30,00€
  • Los Castaños   2*   38,88€
  • La Casa Noble   AD   135,00€
  • Molino del Bombo   26,75€
  • La Posada de Alájar   1*   60,00€
  • Galaroza Sierra   2*   50,00€
  • Apartahotel Sierra de Galaroza   2*   80,00€
  • Posada de Cortegana   2*   AD   40,00€
  • Sierra Luz   2*   50,00€

  • Bar-Restaurante Peña Arias Montano (c/ Peña Arias Montano, s/n) 
Almonaster la Real
  • Hotel Restaurante Casa García (Avda. San Martín 2) 
  • Bar-Restaurante El Camino (at the exit from Almonaster towards Santa Ana) 
  • Restaurantes AracenaPark (Ctra. Sevilla - Lisboa Km.58) 
  • Restaurante Los Ángeles (San Pedro, 16. Close to Gruta de las Maravillas) 
  • Mesón-Asador Las Maravillas (Plza. San Pedro 34. Close to the Gruta) 
  • Bar-Restaurante La Serrana (close to the gruta) 
  • La Tetería Andalusí (Avda. Reina de los Ángeles. Close to Gruta de Las Maravillas) 
  • Cafetería-Rest. Montecruz (Plaza de San Pedro) 
  • Venta de Aracena (At the entrance to Aracena)

Castaño del Robledo
  • Bar-Rest. Señorío de Encinas (At Fuenteheridos Rd s/n, at the entrance to Castaño del Robledo) 
  • Rest.-Hostal La Casa del Cura (Iglesia, 10) 
  • Restaurante El Aceitón (Avenida de Portugal, s/n) 
  • Rest.-Hotel Posada de Cortegana 
  • Hotel-Rest. El Rincón del Abade (Llano de San Juan s/n) 
  • Mesón Asador El Barrio (c/ Esperanza Bermúdez, s/n, direction to Castaño del Robledo) 
  • Mesón La Posá (Pza. del Coso, 10)
Higuera de la Sierra
  • Restaurante El Cobertizo (close to the main road) 
  • Bar-Restaurante La Terraza (Calle Virgen de Prado, 4) 
Jabugo-Los Romeros
  • Mesón Rest. La Albardería (Finca Era de la Caseta, in Los Romeros-Jabugo)
Linares de la Sierra
  • Restaurante Arrieros (C/ Arrieros, 2) 
  • La Ventana de Zufre (Pso. de los Alcaldes)

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