Granada Province - Defensive Villages of the Vega

The area west of Granada was once a crucial frontier between the Moorish kingdom of Granada and the Christian territory. Today, it is now dotted some dramatically sited villages, on rocky crags or hills overlooking the fertile vega (plain). These villages still bear the stamp of their defensive past in their ruined fortifications in hilltop positions, with magnificent views over the olive groves and cereal fields of the undulating vega.

The village in the most spectacular situation is undoubtedly Montefrío. Two hilltop churches dominate its skyline, the highest built on the site of a Moorish fortress whose walls can still be seen today. Loja del Río huddles in the shadow of the Sierra de Loja, split in two by the Genil river that has a number of magnificent waterfalls on its banks, Los Infiernos de Loja Natural Monument, just outside town. Alhama de Granada is located on the top of a steep-sided ravine and is famous for its thermal spring.

Villages

Agrón Algarinejo
Agrón is a popular destination for rural tourism.
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Algarinejo is located in the Cerro del Calvario.
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Alhama de Granada Arenas del Rey
Alhama de Granada is a pretty, ancient spa town located approximately 53 kilometres from Granada.
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Arenas del Rey is the result of a union between smaller hamlets.
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Cacín Chauchina
Cacín is located to the left of the river Cacín, 39km from Granada city.
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Chauchina is popular with hikers.
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Chimeneas Churriana de la Vega
Chimineas is located alongside the Barranco de las Zarzas.
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Churriana de la Vega is popular with rural tourism enthusiasts.
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Cijuela Cúllar Vega
Cijuela possesses a rich network of mineral waters which provide for the whole area.
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Cúllar Vega is surrounded by poplar forests.
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Escúzar Fuente Vaqueros
Escúzar is a village of astounding natural beauty.
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Fuente Vaqueros is a village in Granada province most famous for being the birthplace of Federico García Lorca.
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Huétor Tájar Íllora
Huétor Tájar is most famous for its high quality asparagus.
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Íllora was once known as the Right eye of Granada due to its importance as a defensive fortification.
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Jayena Láchar
Jayena is ideal for outdoor sports such as hiking.
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Láchar is an ideal destination for rural tourism.
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Las Gabias La Malahá
Las Gabias is ideal for lovers of both sport and history.
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La Malahá is home to some very well preserved Arabic thermal baths.
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Loja Montefrío
Occupying what was historically an important strategic position, Loja acted as a defensive centre under the Moors.
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Located off the tourist trail in the northwestern corner of Granada province near the Cordoba border.
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Moraleda de Zafayona Riofrío
Moraleda de Zafayona has been declared Bien de Interés Cultural (a site of cultural interest).
Riofrío is a favourite place for those who like fishing and enjoying the countryside.
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Salar Santa Cruz del Comercio
Salar is the source of the Bañuelo thermal springs and is also home to the Monea caves.
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Santa Cruz del Comercio is an ideal destination for nature lovers.
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Santa Fe Vegas de Genil
Santa Fé began as the encampment set up by the Catholic Kings at the end of the 15 th century, when the siege of Granada commenced.
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Vegas de Genil is popular with rural tourism enthusiasts.
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Ventas de Huelma Villanueva Mesía
Ventas de Huelma is a popular destination for rural tourism where visitors can stay in a traditional cave house.
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Villanueva Mesia is ideal for those who enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking and cycling.
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Zafarraya Zagra
Zafarraya is popular with hikers due to its privileged location.
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Zagra is an important archaeological site and many remains have been discovered here.
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Parks

Los Infiernos de Loja  
These magnificent waterfalls, Los Infiernos, are located just outside Loja on the Genil river.
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