by Saskia Mier
Mengíbar is situated to the north of the capital of the province, between the Guadalquivir and Guadalbullon Rivers, in a landscape covered with olive and fruit trees and cereal fields.It has about 10,000 inhabitants.
Throughout history, numerous cultures have settled in the valleys of the Guadalquivir. On June 14, 1914, the “Sword of Mengíbar”was discovered, a relic from the latter part of the Bronze age, found in the river bed during construction work on the dam. Dating from the ninth century BC, its cultural influence is believed to have been transmitted from the Phoenicians to the Tartessians of the upper Guadalquivir. More>
Hotels in Mengibar
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THINGS TO SEE
Torre del Homenaje del Castillo de Mengíbar
The Arabs built a fortress, fundamental to the defense of the surrounding territories, around which the population nucleus emerged. In 1225, Fernando III conquered the Castle of Mengíbar, destroying it, however another was built, which in the seventeenth century was still standing, evidenced by its description by Martín Ximena Jurado. Even at the beginning of the twentieth century, some wall paintings of the construction were preserved. The tower visible today is the only remaining vestige of the castle. Its square base is 13.7m wide and the tower reaches 25.5m at the parapets of the upper terrace. Located in Plaza de la Constitución. (Location)
Casa de la Inquisición
The Courthouse of the Holy Inquisition dates back to the seventeenth century and was inhabited by Juan Rubio Galera in 1762, a relative of the Holy Office of Córdoba. The most significant aspect of this house is its façade, made up of two superimposed openings;that on the ground floor, with Tuscan pilasters and padded lintel, features in its key the coat of arms of the Court of the Inquisition. Located on Calle Jaén. (Location)
Casa Palacio de la Chica
Parts of this building have been associated with the Islamic phase of the original Palace, from 800 to 1225, according to studies of archaeological surveys and analysis of its walls. It also corresponds to the Medieval-Christian phase, from 1225 to 1489, when, according to documentary sources, it was the residence of the Lord of Mengíbar and Ruler of Jaén, Pedro Méndez de Sotomayor and his great-grandson, Fernando Ibáñez de Barrionuevo y Mendoza, Bailiff of Mengíbar.From the sixteenth century, it became the property of the Ponce de León family and in 1880 the Palace was acquired by the La Chica family, who united with the Cassinelo family in marriage in 1904. During this time, the palace underwent various significant restorations to achieve the ornate the intricately segmented interior visible today. In 2017 it was acquired by the local council and today it is a Hotel. Located in Plaza de la Constitución. (Location)
Ermita del Señor de las Lluvias
This is the only eighteenth-century chapel that has been preserved in Mengíbar, and it was reformed in 1970. The exterior is composed of an exposed stone facade, with a simple portal in which there is a circular window, and is crowned by a simple bell gable. Formerly known as Ermita del Humilladero, currently it is known by the name of “Señor de las Lluvias” (Lord of the Rain), because locals have a tradition of praying to its icon of the Crucified Christ during prolonged droughts. Located on Camino de Mengíbar. (Location)
Iglesia de San Pedro Apóstol
This church is a Renaissance jewel; its tower and Casa-Palacio form the city’s most emblematic set ofbuildings, with strong influences from Vandelvira, Francisco del Castillo “El Viejo” and Alonso Barba. Despite undergoing extensive detrimental renovations over time, it retains the stamp of the late sixteenth century. With a basilica floor plan and a flat frontage, it has three naves separated by pillars, four of them with columns attached to a pedestal. It is covered with vaults decorated in stone, except for the presbytery, which has a hemispherical dome. The head is covered with a barrel vault. Located in Plaza del Sol. (Location)
THINGS TO SEE OUTSIDE THE VILLAGE
Museo Activo del Aceite de Oliva y la Sostenibilidad Terra Oleum
The Active Museum of Olive Oil and Sustainability is configured as a modern exhibition space, made up of buildings and uncovered areas designed to educate visitors on the cultivation of olive trees, the technology of olive oil production, the olive oil economy, and scientific-technical and cultural manifestation linked to olive oil and closely related to the sustainable development of production systems.The Museum is spread over a plot of 11,222m2, located in Geolit (Scientific Technological Park of Oil and Olive Groves).Located in Parque Geolit, Calle Sierra Morena. (Location and Hours)
Ermita de Santa María Magdalena
On July 14, 1990, the new chapel of Santa María Magdalena was inaugurated and blessed, on the site of the sixteenth-century hermitage it replaced. The exterior shows a simple door finished in a semicircular arch, between two narrow and high lateral openings like arrow slits. Above the entrance arch, a niche houses the image of Santa María Magdalena. Located on Calle de la Ermita. (Location)
This area offers travellers countless enclaves of natural interest. Among them is the Cerro Albariza, a natural viewpoint from which there are magnificent views of the Guadalquivir Valley. It can be reached on foot after travelling just over a kilometer and a half. The Guadalbullón Delta is located next to the Cañada Real deTorreblascopedro, about three kilometers from the town of Mengíbar, which can be reached on foot, by bicycle or by car. Its abundant riverside vegetation gives it botanical interest. In the same area, just over four and a half kilometers from the population center, is the Cortijo de Maquiz, located at the bottom of the Guadalquivir valley.
When visiting Mengíbar, try local dishes such as albóndigas de bacalao (cod balls), morcilla (black pudding), picadillo de naranja (orange salad), pisto de tomate y pimiento (tomato and pepper salad) and churrasco de cerdo (bbq pork). Sweet treats include roscos de vino (almond biscuits), hojuelas con mieland pestiños(honey pastries).
Popular festivals in Mengíbar are Fiesta de San Antón, Semana Santa, Romeria y Feria de Santa María Magdalena and Rosarios de Septiembre. More>
There is a bus service from Mengibar to Jaén bus station and to Ubeda, Carzola and other nearby villages. More>
Mengibar train station is located north of the town. Medium distance trains stop on the Jaen to Madrid Chamartin route. Trains from Jaen to Cordoba do not stop at Mengibar, it is necessary to take a train to Linares and change. Mengibar has a single platform for bother directions, a waiting room and a car park. The line and station was opened in 1881 on the Espeluy-Jaén railway which joined the Puente Genil to Linares railway.
The weather forecast for the next few days for Mengibar. More>
The tourist office of Mengibar is located in the town hall. (Location)