Almáchar, a small village nestling on the side of a mountain, clearly owes much of its heritage to the Moors as can be seen by its steep, narrow streets and white-washed houses. The village's name, like many in the Axarquia region, is of Arabic origin. In the past it has also been known as Macharalhayate and, later, Almachar de la Cruz. During Moorish times, Almachar, El Borge, Cutar and Moclinejo formed 'The Four Villages' and were under the protection of Comares Castle. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, the town was famed for its hand-made cloth and there were a number of textile mills in the area. Nowadays, agriculture is the main occupation, with emphasis on muscatel grapes and raisins.

Statistics

Area: 14 square kilometres Altitude: 255 mtrs above sea level Population: +/- 2,000 Distance from Nerja: 39 km Driving Time: +/- 45 mins

Location

Places of Interest

19th century Mudejar style Iglesia Parroquial de San Mateo Cueva del Toro General Moorish architecture.

Local Cuisine

Local specialities include: Ajoblanco (chilled almond soup with bread, oil and vinegar), Gazpacho (cold tomato, garlic and vegetable soup), Sopa amarilla (a yellow soup), Berzas (cabbage broth), Coles Moreadas (cabbage), Embutidos (cured meats) and Puchero (chick pea and meat stew). Muscatel wine is the local tipple.

Local Festivals

Fiestas del Santo Cristo de la Banda Verde (1st weekend in May) - Music, processions and fireworks in honour of the village patron. Feria de la Virgen del Amparo (July 29th-31st) Fiesta del Ajoblanco (1st Saturday in September) - Cullinary festival

Useful Info

Town Hall Tel: 952512002

Where to Stay

Cortijo de El Zorro Lomas de Villanueva, Poligono 6 Parcela 97 Telephone: 952512195 Tobalo Paraje Lomas de Villanueva, s/n Telephone: 952276229 Fax: 952276556 E-mail: ruralandalus@ruralandalus.es www.ruralandalus.es

Where to Eat

Mesón Punto Europa St. Cornellá, 25 Tel: 952519519 Fax: 952276556