What to do and what to see in Almuñécar

Almuñécar is a municipality of Granada that is part of the region of the Costa Tropical. It is located south of Andalusia and next to the Mediterranean Sea it borders other municipalities such as Otívar, Jete, Ítrabo, Salobreña and Nerja in Málaga.

The municipality of Almuñécar, apart from the population nucleus of Almuñécar, includes La Herradura, Torrecuevas and Velilla-Taramay. It is crossed by the Verde River and the Seco River.

Almuñécar has been growing in the last thirty years through the construction of hotels and urbanizations, as well as the production of tropical fruits such as avocado, medlar, cherimoya or mango.

History of Almuñécar

In the Bronze Age begins the history of Almuñécar, about 1500 a. C., and will be at the end of the ninth century when the Phoenicians arrive forming urban structures. This meant that when the Romans arrived in Almuñécar, they found a well-structured city.

In the Moorish era, Almuñécar was a strategic place, considered as a strong point of the Granada coast. However, Almuñécar was not considered a city or medina until the 11th century.

While the Andalusian territory was divided by taifas, Almuñécar belonged to the taifa of Granada. For this taifa, Almuñécar became the main coastal city of the kingdom.

The Nasrid kingdom would come to an end in Almuñécar after the fall of Baza in 1489, when the Granada coast surrendered to the reconquest of the Catholic Monarchs through capitulations signed in Almuñécar.

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What to see in Almuñécar

In Almuñécar there are endless places to see to appreciate and understand the history of this magnificent municipality.

Castle of Saint Miguel: Roman fortress located on a hill with great importance in the time of the Moorish in Almuñécar. The castle was rebuilt by Ferdinand the Catholic, but was bombed by the English during the Independence War, which made it become a cemetery.

Church of the Encarnación: Built at the beginning of the 17th century by Juan de Herrera except the tower that was designed by Diego de Siloé. It is the first baroque temple in the province of Granada and inside it keeps a Visigothic style sculpture of the Virgin of Antigua, which is the patron saint of Almuñécar.

Columbarium of the Monje Tower: It is from the 1st to the 2nd century. It is located two kilometers from Almuñécar, in the Torrecuevas neighborhood, along the road of Verde River Valley. It is a columbarium in the form of a tower that is covered by a barrel vault with small niches inside.

Rock of the Saint: This is a rocky outcrop that penetrates the sea and has a cross on its top where we find a viewpoint from which to obtain a beautiful views to Almuñécar. It may have been connected to the Castle of Saint Miguel in the past, as this is shown by the remains of walls. Here is located a monument dedicated to Abderramán I, who disembarked in Almuñécar to go to Córdoba in the year 755.

Castle of La Herradura: It was built by order of Carlos III in 1764 due to the continuous arrival of pirates to Almuñécar. It was used as a fortress and communicated with the Cerro Gordo Tower and the Punta de la Mona Tower. Since 1839 it has been going through different hands and uses, but now belongs to the municipality of Almuñécar that allows free visits and where you can find temporary exhibitions.

Roman aqueduct: The aqueduct, declared an Cultural Interest Asset, is estimated to have been built in the first century and had seven kilometers of which five remain. Its last section was discovered in the 90s with some works in the Main Square of Almuñécar and it is believed that underneath it passed a Roman road from Linares to Málaga. It is located in the direction of the Suspiro del Moro road.

Termas de la Carrera: They are located next to the section of the aqueduct that is farthest from the center of Almuñécar. They were discovered in 1996 in excavations by Molina Fajardo.

Fish salting factory: Located next to the part of the Roman aqueduct that is located in the center of Almuñécar. The aqueduct served to provide drinking water to the salting industry of Almuñécar.

El Majuelo Park: It is located around the factory and is a place where you can enjoy a relaxing walk when the temperature in Almuñécar is pleasant. It is decorated with statues of Syria and with different types of palm trees.

Najarra Palace: Built in the mid-nineteenth century with a neo-Arab style. In it we find an Arab garden where we find palm trees and cypresses among other species of plants. Inside it houses the Municipal Tourist Information Office of Almuñécar.

Pillar of the Real Street: It was built in the sixteenth century by the mayor of Almuñécar. It is of Renaissance style and the channels through which the water passes to the pillar are of Roman origin.

Almuñécar Door: Its construction was carried out in 1997 in memory of Blas Infante. The three arches that compose it are by the three cultures that have inhabited Almuñécar, the Roman, Muslim and Christian.

Church of Saint José: It is an old hermitage of Almuñécar transformed in 1907 in church under the invocation of Saint José that is the patron saint of La Herradura.

Columbarium La Albina: It is estimated from the 1st century, from the Roman period and in it the sumptuous burials of Almuñécar were made. At present, only the remains of this columbarium remain, with three of the four walls that made it up.

Monument to the Phoenicians: It is located on the Almuñécar Altillo Walk. It is a bronze sculpture made by Miguel Moreno Romera and is dedicated to the Phoenician culture, recalling the history of Almuñécar.

Water Monument: It is located next to the bus station of Almuñécar, on Fenicia Avenue. It is also made of bronze, as well as made by the same sculptor, Miguel Moreno Romera.

Monument to the men of the sea: Made by the same sculptor, Miguel Moreno Romera, in bronze, shows the maritime tradition of Almuñécar and the shipwreck of Felipe II's armada on the beaches of Almuñécar.

Flamenco singer "El Niño de Cerval": Bronze tribute by Miguel Moreno Romera to cantaor Rafael Muñoz Barbera. It is located in the Plaza de los Carrascos and was inaugurated in 2006 by the mayor of Almuñécar and Rafael Muñoz Barbera himself.

Monument to the Man of the Field: Like the previous ones, this sculpture is made by Miguel Moreno Romera. It represents the effort of the men in the field and is located in the Boulevard de la Carrera, in front of the Roman remains of Almuñécar.

Other places of interest to see in Almuñécar are the Punta de la Mona Lighthouse or La Herradura Lighthouse, the Marina del Este Leisure Port and the Hermitage of Saint José and Saint Rita.

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What to do in Almuñécar

Almuñécar has a wide range of entertainment with which to entertain the visit and enjoy totally different activities, from culturizar in a museum to have fun in a water park.

Archaeological Museum Cave of the Seven Palaces: Located in the basement of an ancient Roman temple built in honor to Minerva. It has seven vaulted sections and contains archaeological remains that were found in El Majuelo Park and in other places in Almuñécar. Among the remains is the Egyptian amphora of the ancient pharaoh Apophis I, who is believed to have been brought by the Phoenicians to Almuñécar.

Bonsai Museum: Located in the center of Almuñécar, it contains one of the most complete bonsai collections in Spain. All species of bonsai are native, so you can see bonsai of apple trees, olive trees, pomegranates and cork oaks among others. These bonsai are cared for by the Costa Tropical Bonsai's Friends Association.

Center of Municipal Pottery: In the we find carvings of the ceramist Amalia García del Moral. Admission is free to visit and buy products. You can also see the garden with fountains, plants and a stretch of wall from the Nasrid era of Almuñécar.

Peña Escrita: This is an ecological reserve that has a zoo 14 kilometers from the center of Almuñécar, taking the old road to Granada. Located in the middle of nature, it has spectacular views, with some 400 hectares and with animals such as kangaroos, ostriches, hippos, bears, wolves, lions, tigers, lemurs, bison, etc. who live in an environment of semi-freedom.

Cliffs of Maro - Cerro Gordo Natural Place: It has a length of twelve kilometers with an extension of 295 hectares of terrestrial land and 1415 marine hectares. In 1989 it was declared a natural area. It is located on the border between Málaga and Granada, just between the municipalities of Nerja and Almuñécar.

Loro Sexi: It is a park with more than 100 species of birds in Almuñécar, such as the common pigeon, parrots, toucans, macaws, cockatoos, ducks, swans, etc. Next to it is a cactus garden.

Other attractions for all audiences that you can enjoy in Almuñécar are the Aquarium of Almuñécar, the Aquatropic Aquatic Park and the Mediterranean Park. We can also perform different activities such as kayaking, sailing, scuba diving, canyoning, etc.

However, if something makes the municipality of Almuñécar characteristic, it is its beaches. That's why we can not leave without visiting any of the beaches we find here, whether to enjoy the sun, the water or a walk along the seashore.

Saint Cristóbal Beach: It is an urban beach of Almuñécar with a kilometer in length and 50 meters in average width. It is dark sand.

Caletilla Beach: This beach in Almuñécar is made up of skittles and gravel. It has a length of 100 meters and an average width of 15 meters.

Puerta del Mar Beach: It is located in the center of Almuñécar with a length of 1.14 km and an average width of 50 meters. It is a dark sand beach.

La Herradura Beach: It is 2.05 km long and 40 meters wide. It runs from the Cliffs of Maro - Cerro Gordo Natural Place to Punta de la Mona. It is dark sand and in it you can practice water sports like scuba diving. It is located in La Herradura, four kilometers from Almuñécar. It is composed of different beaches, which from east to west are: Calaíza Beach, Parda Peña Beach, El Pantano Beach, Coal Beach, El Lace Beach, Las Flores Beach, Maravillas Beach, La Caleta Beach, Dog Cove and Berengueles-Steam Bay Beach.

Other beaches that we can find in Almuñécar are Velilla Beach, Tesorillo Beach, El Pozuelo Beach, Calabajío Beach, Cabría Beach and Curumbico Beach.

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Traditional festivals and celebrations in Almuñécar

Almuñécar has a calendar full of days with celebrations for all those who like to enjoy the tradition and a cheerful atmosphere.

Patron Saint festivities in honor of Saint José: They are the festivities of La Herradura and take place on March 19. A procession goes through the town and various sports and cultural activities are scheduled.

Holy Week: Declared a Festival of Tourist-Cultural Interest. In it different thrones are processed by Almuñécar thanks to the different brotherhoods or fraternities.

May Crosses: Celebrated on May 3 with a colorful and cheerful atmosphere that is transmitted throughout Almuñécar.

Saint Juan: On the night of June 23 to 24 a multitude of bonfires illuminate both the beaches of Almuñécar and La Herradura.

Festivities in honor of Our Lady of the Ancient Crowned: Patroness of Almuñécar, from 9 to 15 August. In 2003 it was declared a Festival of National Tourist Interest of Andalusia. Its location is in the Fairground. The Virgin of the Antigua is processed by Almuñécar, from the Church of the Encarnación to the Saint Cristóbal Beach, where it is shipped to the Puerta del Mar Beach.

Other festivities that you can enjoy in Almuñécar are the Festivity of the Saint Sebastián neighborhood, the Festivity of the Virgin of the Carmen, the Festivity of Saint Miguel neighborhood, the Festivity of Torrecuevas, the Pilgrimage of Saint Isidro Labrador and Corpus Christi.

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Gastronomy of Almuñécar

Regarding gastronomy, Almuñécar has some very valuable resources, such as fish, vegetables and tropical fruits. From these resources we obtain the typical dishes of Almuñécar, such as the prawns with mango salad, the chicken breast stuffed with mango, the mousse and mango sorbet; ice cream, mousse and custard apple pie; the baked chicken with avocado leaves, the meat pancakes with avocado, the mango salad with prawns, the avocado mousse with prawns, the mohini casserole, the fried squash, the salamandrota, the crumbs of semolina, the garlic soup toasted, the sardine skewers, the potatoes with the tope, the fish soup, the tuna onion, the fish fry or the seafood grill.

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