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Castillo de Locubin

Castillo de Locubin

by Saskia Mier

Castillo de Locubín is one of the municipalities in Jaén province through which the Route of the Caliphate (one of Al-Andalus Legacy routes). This makes it a particularly attractive destination for those who enjoy cultural tourism. It has about 4,050 inhabitants.


The first evidence of human presence in this area dates back to the fourth millennium BC, from caves once inhabited by shepherds who made decorative ceramics. The town of Cabeza Baja de Encina Hermosa, which has been identified with Ipolcobulcula, is located in its municipal area. It was a large fortified population centre, founded in the latter stages of the Iberian culture and which reached its peak of development in the high Roman imperial stage, in the first century AD. The imperial stage corresponds to the Roman villa of Cortijo del Baño, in Venta del Carrizal. More>


Lavadero del Nacimiento
The washhouse at the source of the Río San Juan has a rectangular floor plan. The building is of great architectural value, but also presents ethnographical points of interest because of the activity which took place there. Though its exact date of construction is unknown, it is an extremely old building, with two rows of washing stones arranged on both sides of the channel. At present, it is in disuse as a laundry facility, but traditionally it was used by the women of the neighbourhood and by farmers. It was restored by the “Juan de Aranda II” Workshop School in 2006. Located on Calle Camino Nacimiento.

Castillo de la Villeta
The castle has a circular plan, preserving part of the northwest wall. However, its impressive cylindrical tower was demolished by strong winds at the end of the sixteenth century. Declared an Asset of Cultural Interest in 1985. Located on Calle Hispanidad.

Iglesia de San Pedro Apóstol
The church was built to replace an old medieval temple, somewhere between the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, coinciding with a significant population growth at the time and taking into account the artistic trends of that time. The lengthy construction time could have been due to the financial constraints of such a major project. It was originally a church with a single nave, divided into three sections, covered with a half-barrel vault with lunettes, with circular porthole windows, whose transverse arches rest on boxed pilasters, with small niche chapels on both sides. It has two entrances; the main one at the foot of the nave is believed to be the work of Juan de Aranda y Salazar and is made up of a semicircular hole punctuated by Doric columns with fluted shafts on a pedestal and entablature with cased frieze. The side portal, attributed to Ginés Martín de Aranda, has a semicircular arch on imposts, flanked by pilasters with triglyph capitals, finished off with a straight pediment and ball pinnacles. Declared an Asset of Cultural Interest in 1983. Located on Calle Blas Infante.

Casa Museo Antiguo Hospital de la Orden de Calatrava
The Museum of Popular Arts and Customs, curated by Consuelo Castillo González and José Antonio Expósito Torres, occupies a beautiful and spacious eighteenth-century building, patiently refurbished by its creator and which, even though it is privately owned, is placed at the service of the cultural and tourist interests of the town. The building shows characteristics of the stately and domestic Castille architecture. It is one of the few remaining examples of what was the abundant architectural heritage of Castillo de Locubín, today greatly diminished by demolitions and transformations through the centuries. The façade, arranged with a balanced symmetry of openings and gaps, is centered with an elegant carved stone portal, which responds to a scheme that was very widespread in Jaén during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The door is framed by elegant flat architrave pilasters, on a flat pedestal. The lintel, with well-marked voussoirs, has the emblem of the Order of Santiago carved in the key, the cross on the scallop alluding to the link between the properties and a Knight of the Order. Although oral tradition links the building to an old hospital, the loss of the Municipal Archive in the 1940s prevents us an accurate tracing of its origin. Located on Calle Josefa Mena.

Opening Times:
Monday-Friday, 09:00-19:00hrs
Saturday, 09:00-18:00hrs
Tel: 659 55 66 06

Museo Pablo Rueda
This museum is modern, elegant, descriptive and entertaining, immersing visitors in the surprising and creative world of sculptor Pablo Rueda. His busts, paintings and recreations of everyday objects invariably evoke a strong response from observers. Rueda created more than 500 works throughout his life, of which the museum holds about 50, as well as various personal objects. The collection was established through the transfer of works by the family, as well as the efforts of the Provincial Council and the City Council. Located on Calle El Posito.

Opening Times:
Monday-Friday, 09:00-14:00hrs
Tel: 953 59 13 64

Ermita de Nuestro Padre Jesús
This chapel was built around 1700, and was later restored after the Spanish Civil War, preserving the tempera paintings of the dressing room, as well as the original carving of the Patron, Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno. Located on Calle Jesús.

Ermita de San Antón
This chapel dates from 1800, but was demolished and rebuilt in 2001. It preserves the original semicircular span of the entrance and in the niche on the façade there is a figure of San Antón by local potter Juan Trigo. Located on Calle San Antón.


Torre de las Mimbres
This circular tower has a base perimeter of 21.65m and conserves the vaulted structure of the roof and spiral staircases. It seems that the tower had to undergo various renovations, one of which was done very recently. Located south west of the town, off the JV-2238.

Ermita de San Antonio
The chapel of San Antonio is thought to date back to the eighteenth century, although it does not appear in written references until 1879. It was damaged during the Spanish Civil War, but subsequently restored and reformed on various occasions. Located in Ventas del Carrizal.


Nacimiento del Río San Juan
The source of the San Juan River is the ‘green lung’ of Castillo de Locubín, an idyllic site accessed by the C-3221. It is a place of great beauty, with several naturally occurring crystalline pools, and was converted into a recreational area some years ago. The unique feature of this spring, rarely seen elsewhere, is the way in which the water gushes from the floor of the pools, across an area of ​​about a 1000m2, forming intermittent columns of bubbles to the surface. The cold temperature of the water does not allow fish to thrive here, although sometimes trout come to birth from the restocking carried out by the fishing clubs.


Popular dishes to try when visiting Castillo de Locubín include oreganillo de orza (pork stew), migas castilleras (fried breadcrumbs served with pork), sopa de boladillos (chicken and egg dumpling soup), joyico (bread loaf filled with jamón and cherries), gazpacho de cerezas (cold tomato served served with cherries), pimientos rellenos de cereza (peppers filled with cherries) and remojón (orange, black olive, egg and cod salad). Sweet treats include mermelada de cereza (cherry jam), manta castillera (meringue cake) and rosquetas (aniseed biscuits).


Popular festivals in Castillo de Locubín are San Antón, Semana Santa, Fiesta de las Cerezas and Fiestas Patronales en Honor a Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno. More>


The neighbouring villages to Castillo de Locubín are Alcalá la Real, Alcaudete and Valdepeñas de Jaén.