Tips for Rural Holidays in Granada - Spain

By: Rudi Van Der Zalm

The Poniente Granadino is crossed from East to West by Andalucia's main artery of communication, the A-92 motorway. This road provides easy access to the whole territory, connecting it rapidly to the cities of Granada, Malaga, Sevilla and Cordoba.

As such, the Poniente Granadino can be said to be strategically privileged. With an area of 2,044 km2, the region contains 16 municipalities: Algarinejo, Alhama de Granada, Arena del Rey, Cacin, Huetor-Tajar, Jayena, Illora, Loja, Moclin, Montefrio, Moraleda de Zafayona, Salar, Santa Cruz del Comercio, Villanueva Mesia, Zagra and Zafarraya. It borders the provinces of Jaen to the north, Cordoba to the northeast, and Malaga to the south and west. Its privileged position allows the visitor to reach the cities of Granada, Sevilla, Cordoba and Granada, in only a few minutes.

Being a territory which bordered on other provinces, the Poniente Granadino became a strategic site in the defence of the Nazarine Kingdom of Granada, in the final phase of the splendour of Al-Andalus. Moreover, its position meant that the region witnessed the new influences which trickled in from the Christian areas, thereby favouring the cultural enrichment which we can enjoy today. The castles of Loja, Moclin, Illora, Zagra and Montefrio are a reflection of a time dominated by frontier rivalries between two very different cultural and religious traditions: the Hispano-Muslim Culture, and the incipient Renaissance Culture, from both of which magnificent architectural examples survive to this day.

The priviliged position of the Poniente Granadino allows the visitor to reach the cities of Granada, Seville, Cordoba and Malaga in less than an hour by car to sense the history of the area and the Hispano-Muslem culture and the many architectural examples we can enjoy today. Much more ancient are the Megalithic remains from the frontier between life and death which marked the primitive population of the zone.. Having examined the mix of reality and symbolism in the prehistoric rock art, the traveller can swiftly move on to admire the aesthetic tendencies of classical illustrated art, with the best examples to be found in the churches of Encarnacion de Loja, Alhama de Granada, Illora and Montefrio, without forgetting the sumptuosity of the numerous Baroque buildings which dot the region.

For those who wish to discover these treasures, but are too far away the plane is a perfect means of transport. The airport in Granada is very close to this region. and has regular flights from Madrid, Barcelona aud Melilla. It is also possihle to come via Malaga airport, at the opposite end of the region. The Poniente Granadino's land communications are also very efficient. The main axis of the The Poniente Granadino road system is the A-92 motorway, from which rnany national and regional roads branch off, providing efficient connections between most parts of the region. Furthermore, several railway services cross the Poniente Granadino daily, connecting Sevilla and Algeciras with Granada, passing through Loja and other towns.

A rent-a-car is the perfect solution to discover this interesting region by yourself and it is highly recommendable to visit several websites from online brokers to check for competitive quotes for cheap car rental in Granada or a bargain rental car in Malaga from reputable car hire companies at Granada airport, Seville airport, Jerez airport or Malaga airport and many other destinations in Andalusia and Spain.

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