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Walk from Ferreirola, through La Taha valley, near Pitres

This is a well-signed, clear path with outstanding views of the La Taha valley and Rio Trevelez, the white villages around Pitres, and the Sierra Nevada mountain range over to Granada.  It takes about 5 hours to complete, is circular, and is about 8 ½ miles in distance. There are frequent coloured lines painted on stones/fences etc, to guide you.  (If there is a choice of paths, one painted line will be crossed through therefore telling you to take the other path).  There is some steep climbing, but the views are well worth it!  We recommend you take plenty of water, strong walking boots, and a good walking map.  It is a good idea to wear layers of clothes, as in the valley it may be warm, but during the walk you climb quite a distance and it may not be so warm up high.  There are 2 suggested stops for lunch/snacks/a well-deserved rest, so you may like to bring food for these. We strongly recommend you take a good quality walking map; please do not rely on these walk details alone! 

From Ferreirola (you can park outside the church), follow the streets down out of the village, past a fountain and wash house, towards a path leading along olive groves, marked with a signpost saying GR142 Busquistar.  Follow this path, until you come to a division, one path signed for Busquistar to the left and the other to the right signed Rio, choose the Rio path, and follow this down to the river.  You pass a threshing platform as you gradually descend, passing through trees and catching only glimpses of the river below.  This is a good place to see birds of prey circling high above.  When you reach the river (Rio Trevelez), you will see Los Banos de Panjuilla which are ruined public baths, more than 1000 years old.  Cross the river by a bridge, the river is still quite far below and forcing its way powerfully through a narrow gorge.  Climb the other side of the valley, up a zig-zag path.  This path is very quaint and gives superb views of the valley, with gradually more white villages coming into view the higher you climb, however it is a very steep path so this is a perfect place for your first meal/rest stop halfway up.  At the top continue to follow the path until you come to small group of houses near a quiet road.  Turn right as you reach the houses and continue along the path.  You are now on Corona which is 1375m in height.  This path continues through woodland, looking down on the other side of the valley you previously walked upon, and across to the Sierra Nevada mountains.  You should be able to see all the 7 white villages of La Taha as you progress along.  Follow this path for 4 ½ km until you reach a junction with a path going down to the right.  Take this path, past a farm housing goats (unless they are roaming on the hill alongside you!).  This path descends quite steeply in a series of zig-zags down the hillside, some parts having quite steep drops so take care, but the views are very dramatic and rewarding.   The path comes to a very old looking, (but safe!) Muslim bridge crossing the river, as it forces its way powerfully through a narrow gorge.  There is an old ruined Muslim mill by the bridge.  The path you have just come down apparently used to be used by the silk thread traders, which was one of the main industries of Las Alpujarras during the 15th century.  If you turn immediately right after crossed the bridge, there is a lovely spot for another meal/rest beside the water as it tumbles over rocks on its way down to the gorge under the bridge.  Turn back to the path you left after you crossed the bridge, and follow this path as it progresses quite steeply up the valley side.  Look back often though for more views of the gorge and river, and of the hillside path you climbed down on the other side.  This path does get progressively steeper, so you will have appreciated your stop just before beginning.  It runs up into the village of Fondales, walk through the streets to reach the road, then follow this road along to Mecinilla village, past the white church and turn right at the wash house to go through Mecina village.  The road then continues into Ferreirola village, and to the start of the walk.    

 
In, Around & Above Orgiva

This walk starts at the Tourist Information Office in Orgiva, Las Alpujarras and is a circular walk taking approximately 2 hours.  It takes in the main sites and streets of Orgiva, then climbs quite steeply up on a good wide track above the town, providing many viewpoints of Orgiva and the surrounding area.  The walk then descends to the River Chico, affording views of several of the nearby white villages, and follows the riverbed back to the town.

From Orgiva Tourist Information Office follow the Avda Gonzalez Robles past the local cinema and Hotel Mirasol.  The street curves to the left and then meets the bottom of Calle Doctor Fleming, on the left.  Take this street, past Orgiva’s beautiful twin-spire church ‘Inglesia de Nuestra Senora de la Expectacion’ which dates from the 16th century.  Continue to the top of the street and turn right into the ‘Plaza de la Alpujarra’.  This is a delightful town square with tiled pictures of the local towns, a fountain, and a cross, and is a popular meeting place for residents.  Head towards the cross and pass the grand Guardia Civil building, then take the street to the left (have the Guardia Civil on your left and the town carpark on your right).  Follow this street up to the ‘Grupo Alpujarro’, another square, which is the location of the town’s Thursday market, and another lovely place to sit.  At the top you will see a sign for ‘Ermita de San Sebastian’, pointing to the left.  Head in this direction along Calle Estacion; a lovely 2-level street full of old white houses.  At the end of this street turn right onto Calle Barrio Alto; another picturesque street, and climb up to the charming 16th century white ‘Ermita de San Sebastian’ church.  Take the path below the left of the church, passing fields on your left, and follow this path as it turns left again alongside the fields.  The path reaches a junction of roads, take the one straight ahead and follow this as it climbs past orange groves and houses.  When the tarmac track turns to a stone track look to your right to the town of Orgiva below you, and see both churches, as well as the surrounding forest, the small town of Los Tablones, and the Sierra de Lujar opposite with its road cut dramatically into the hillside that snakes towards Torvizcon.  Continue climbing quite steeply until you reach a white cemetery.  The small carpark opposite affords more good views of Orgiva, and towards the coast, and the cemetery itself is worth a look as it is a very up-lifting and relaxing place with beautifully well-tended graves and memorials.  Go past the cemetery, ignore the path to the left and continue straight on.  The path becomes narrower now, but is still clear and easy to follow.  At the top look across at several of the white villages along the base of the Sierra Nevada, then descend the path to the riverbed of the River Chico, and turn left at the bottom.  Pass an inviting-looking area of trees and rocks on your right, a good place for a stop, and follow a stream of water as it then passes under the shelter of a rockface on your left.  As the houses on the outskirts of Orgiva begin to appear, continue along the now wider track that brings you back to the Tourist Information Office.

 
Las Alpujarras Weather

Las Alpujarras has its own unique weather system. Whereas on the coast the temperatures are fairly constant all year round, the combination of mountain air and valleys in Las Alpujarras make the weather more changeable. 

Summers are often hot and dry, with temperatures up to the 30Cs. Rain and cloud is rare, but can occur in the higher mountains, however it never lasts long. Winters are still quite warm and relatively sunny during the day, but can be a lot colder at night after the sun has gone down.  If visiting during this time, it is recommended you bring jumpers and jeans.  Both seasons have their advantages - a BBQ in the summer, and an evening in-front of a roaring fire in the winter.

The best time for walking in Las Alpujarras is from April to mid-June, and from mid-September to mid-November.

As Las Alpujarras is a delightful mixture of mountains and valleys it is difficult to give a guide of expected temperatures as the weather can change during just a short journey from village to village, and from different altitudes.

4 day weather forecast for Órgiva, Las Alpujarras

 
Getting Here

By Air

There are three International airports you can use to reach Las Alpujarras.  These are Malaga, Almería and Granada.  Visit our links page to view Airlines.

By Car

The route that most people use to reach Las Alpujarras is from Malaga Airport.  The directions are below:

From Malaga airport

Las alpujarras RoadWhen you leave the airport follow the signs for Malaga (not Cadiz, Torremolinos etc.), you will then join the motorway.  Stay on the motorway for a couple of junctions and then follow signs for N340/E15 Motril.  You need to be in the right hand lane for this but cars are also joining motorway from the right and you can easily miss the junction.  Stay on N340/E15 for about 1 hour until you reach the N323/E902 Granada junction (a couple of Kim's after Salobreña - if you get to Motril you have gone too far).  Stay on N323/E902 for about 10 mins until you pass Velez de Benaudalla.  The road then becomes dual carriageway, move into the right hand lane and start indicating for the right hand turn onto the bridge (about 150 yards from start of dual carriageway).  You will join the A346 road to Orgiva. Other Routes

From Granada Airport (heading south)

go east towards Granada city on the A92.  Take the N323 (E902) south around Granada and continue on this road until you see the sign for A348 Lanjaron and Las Alpujarras.

From Granada Airport (heading east)

go east towards Granada city on the A92.  Continue past Granada, and past Guadix.  Take the A337 to Puerto de la Ragua.

From Almeria Airport (heading west)

take the N340 (E15) west around Almeria.  Follow this past Adra.  When you reach La Rabita take the A345 to Albuñol

Car Hire

There are a wide range of good value car hire companies in Spain, most are based at the airports and large towns.  We recommend booking online before your arrival, you can search for the best deals using our car hire links.

Maps

Flash page covering all of the Alpujarra and Sierra Nevada. Zoom and Pan features. Requires Flash Plug-in

map 1 | map 2 | map 3 | map 4

 
The Rough Guide

Las Alpujarras is a 70km long collection of valleys along the southern slopes of the Sierra Nevada.  It is a mixture of dramatic mountains, deep ravines, sloping hillsides, huge gorges, and the most breath-taking views.  It is full of many clusters of beautiful white villages, often seemingly clinging together on the side of a steep mountainside, which are a traditional feature of this area.

Las Alpujarras has often been described as 'oddball', 'kooky' or 'strange' due to its uniqueness, and olde-world quality.  It has a sense of timelessness and its own pace of life.  It is extremely picturesque and beautiful and once you have visited for the first time, this area stays in your heart and you will come back time and time again.

The Alpujarran people are very welcoming; everywhere you go you are greeted with a friendly 'Hola' and are soon made to feel part of the community.  There is a strong emphasis placed on family life; you will often see several generations of the same family sat down enjoying a meal together. 

It is a particularly delightful area to explore on foot and there are many well-signposted walking routes, ranging from a short stroll, to day long hikes into the Sierra Nevada.  For the really serious walker there are two famous long-distance foot paths that cross Las Alpujarras.  One is the GR-7  which begins in Tarifa in Cadiz province and crosses Europe all the way to Greece.  The other is the GR-142 which runs from Lanjaron to Fiñana on the northern side of the Sierra Nevada in Almeria province.

There is also a huge variety of plants, flowers, animals and birds to see in this region.  Ibex, Deer, Red Squirrel, Badger, Fox, Otter and Wild Boar are all inhabitants of the area.  Bird-watchers have the chance to see an enormous amount of birds of prey, such as Eagles, Vultures, Kestrels, Buzzards, Kites, Hawks and Harriers.  Reptiles are also a common sight in this area, including Snakes, Lizards and Geckos.   

Las Alpujarras, and in particular Granada, is famous for its delicious tapas.  These are small snacks served (often free) with an alcoholic drink and cover a wide range of imaginative dishes.  The town of Trevelez is famous for its Jamón Serrano (cured ham).  The well known 'Alpujarras' or 'Costa' wine can also be sampled.

The region has also become more famous due to the success of several books written by residents.  This began with Gerald Brenan who settled here in the village of Yegen in the 1920's and wrote 'South from Granada'.  Chris Stewart's books ('Driving over Lemons' and 'A Parrot in the Pepper Tree') describe his life in a small farming community near Orgiva.

 
Food and Drink

Most Las Alpujarras food is based on good solid country dishes.  Mealtimes are important to the people of this region, and often involve all the family getting together and meeting.  Most of the food available in cafes and restaurants is extremely good value, and very filling. 

A 'plato alpujarreno' is a dish of fried potatoes, fried eggs, sausage, ham, and often black pudding.  There is an Alpujarra soup with almonds.  Most dishes include pork, lamb or fish.  One of the most well-known foods is Jamon Serrano, (cured ham), most famously produced in the town of Trevelez, but many other villages also produce this as well.  It is very unusual not to see a ham hanging up behind a bar! 

Tapas are commonly served in bars, and are a small snack accompanying an alcoholic drink. These are often free too!  There are an amazing variety of these dishes, ranging from a slice of bread with some meat, to a squid concoction.  All are worth trying, and the staff often respond very enthusiastically to any interest and enquiries about these dishes, often offering you a sample of different ones each time and waiting for your opinion.

Honey and jams are also made in Las Alpujarras, and are contained in beautifully created jars and bottles.  There are a wide variety of flavours available and are perfect for a present.  

The village markets are a joy to visit.  A huge range of food is available, from fresh fruit and vegetables often grown just around the corner on the stallholder's property - no cellophane wrapped imports here.  The fruit is often of a surprisingly large size, particularly peppers and tomatoes.  They taste delicious and are a delight to cook with.  There are also stalls selling herbs and spices, which smell amazing, and have the most beautiful colours.  Also nuts and seeds are widely available.  Even if you don't intend to buy food from the markets, they are worth visiting just for the atmosphere, with all the smells and sights, as well as the sounds of the stallholders' cries, and the constant chatter and gossip of the locals.

 
Town Councils - Ayuntamientos

Town Council - Ayuntamiento


Orgiva
Trevelez
Busquistar
Portugos
Pitres
Bubion
Capileira
Pampaneira
Soportujar
Carataunas
Cañar
Lanjaron
Torvizcon
Almegijar
Lobras
Laroles
Cádiar
Ugijar
Válor
Mecina Bombarón
Yegen
Berchules
Juviles
Castaras
Rubite
Albondon
Albuñol
Sorvilan
Murtas

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