by Saskia Mier
Arahal is situated south of Seville province and is Spain's main producer of chamomile and table olives. It has about 19,500 inhabitants.
In June 1857 all public archives were burnt by a factious mob, making the origins of Arahal difficult to place. Remains of tombstones found with the name Basilippo suggest the presence of Roman settlements.
Arahal underwent re-conquest by Fernando III on 22 July 1240, and returned to the Crown, represented by Sancho IV El Bravo, who in turn, passes it to the Order Of Alcántara. Arahal belonged to the Order until 1460, when it became part of the Marquesado de Villena, to be acquired later by the Counts of Ureña.
In February 1554, Arahal gained full independence by Carlos V, a document later burned during the riot of 1857. That same year, harvest was extremely poor; causing a revolution from peasants and the government of Narvaez would carry out repression.
In September 1870, Arahal received a visit by Sir Don Mariano Téllez-Girón y Beaufort Spontin, XII Duke of Osuna.
In 1907, His Majesty Alfonso XIII granted the title of City to Arahal, thanks to the mediation of Don Eduardo Benjumea y Zayas, the fourth Marquis of Monteflorido and Deputy to Cortes.
THINGS TO SEE
Iglesia de Santa María Magdalena
The church was built on the former site of a Mudejar chapel that was destroyed by the Lisbon earthquake in 1755. The present church was built in 1786 and completed in 1800, financed by Don Pedro Téllez Alcántara, of the Ducal House of Osuna. Located on Calle Colmena.
Convento de Nuestra Señora de la Victoria
The Mudejar Convent owes its origin to an old hermitage dedicated to San Sebastián, patron of epidemics. The work was completed in 1551, financed by the fourth Count of Ureña, father of the first Duke of Osuna. Located on Calle Victoria.
Iglesia de la Vera Cruz
A small church from the eighteenth century, that is suggested to have existed in 1602, later restored in 1780. Located on Calle Veracruz.
Convento de Nuestra Señora del Rosario
The Convent was built during the seventeenth century with an entrance that stands out for its austerity. The construction was completed in 1608 and has been occupied by the Orden de las Religiosas Dominicas del Santo Rosario since 11 June, 1613. Located on Calle Serrano.
Convento de San Roque
The Franciscan Friars built the Convent, completed on 3 May, 1624. Located on Calle Fuentye de la Salud.
Iglesia-Hospital del Santo Cristo de la Misericordia
The Hospital of La Misericordia was founded in 1501 and the colonial, baroque style church was inaugurated in 1761. The church holds images dating to the eighteenth century, including Christ of the Misericordia, a work of Antonio Castillo Lastrucci. Located in Plaza Santo Cristo.
Ermita de San Antonio
The present chapel was built during the eighteenth century. The original eighteenth century altarpiece was replaced by a modern one, containing the current modern image, work of Modesto Gené Roig, replacing the one destroyed in 1936. Located on Calle San Juan.
The Town Hall dates to the sixteenth century and later remodelled several times, adapting it to the style of that time. Located in Plaza de la Corredera.
Casa de la Cultura
The Culture House belonged to the Marquis of Monteflorido and was built during the eighteenth century. Located on Calle Doña Luisa.
Casa del Aire
This house, with its numerous entrances, architecture and triangular floor, is a clear example of the quality, flexibility and functionality of Baroque architecture not always valued. Recent restoration has recovered originality of the building. It is currently the headquarters of the Municipal School of Music and Dance and the Museum of Women in Flamenco. Located on Calle Veracruz.
Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, 10:00-13:00hrs and 17:00-19:00hrs.
Saturday and Sunday, 11:00-14:00hrs.
Tel: 955 84 14 17
THINGS TO SEE OUTSIDE THE VILLAGE
Torre del Cincho
A watchtower that linked visually with the Torre del Barro, belonging to the castle of Moron. Located north of Arahal.
Undoubtedly, Arahal is most known for the olives and in any bar you can try them in many varieties of dressings. Aceitunas prietas are the most typical, they are the last olives left on the tree. They are collected, washed, sun dried, and after some days salt is added and left for several days. Once dried, garlic, ground red pepper and oregano are finally added. Other typical dishes of Arahal include, taganninas esparragás (wild thistle), potaje de garbanzos con bacalao (chickpea stew with cod), codido de calabaza (pumpkin stew) and potaje de chicharos (pork stew). Sweet treats include tocino de cielo (rich egg custard) and torrijas (sweet eggy bread).
Cabalgata Reyes Magos
Three Kings procession celebrated on the evening of 5 January.
Celebrated in February.
Día de Andalucía
Celebrated the 28 February.
Procesión de Nuestra Señora de Montemayor Coronada
Celebrated the last Saturday of May.
San Antonio de Padua
Celebrated the 13 June.
Procesión de Madre de Dios del Carmen
Celebrated the 16 July.
Fiestas Patronales de Santa María Magdalena
Celebrated the 19-21 July.
Procesión de Madre de Dios del Carmen
Celebrated the first weekend of September.
Arahal is located 45km from Seville. To get there, take the A-92 south east leaving Seville. Take exit 40 towards Arahal/El Coronil and the 5th exit at the roundabout onto the SE-5204. Continue on until you reach Arahal.