Surroundings

Velez-Malaga and its surrounding…

The house is situated in the heart of Velez-Malaga, an easygoing beautiful and nonchalant typical Southern Spanish small city in Andalusia. The centre of the village is only 3 minutes walking distance, and all kinds of shops are available.

30 kilometres separates us from Malaga and its airport (easily reachable by buses), and only 10 to 15 minutes to the nearest beaches of Torre del Mar, and the unspoiled nude beach of Almayate. You will enjoy the coolness of the sea, and the numerous bars-restaurants all along the seaside.

Nonchalant, but not sleeping, Velez-Malaga is an active sympathetic small city on the tropical coast of Andalusia, in the South of Spain. Amongs lots of possibilities, the Gramola (only 3 minutes down the street), a very friendly bar, opens its doors 4 days a week, and especially gay friendly Fridays, for colourful unforgettable nights.

Vélez-Malaga (often simply referred to as Vélez), is the centre of an agricultural region known for its strawberries and vineyards, which produce the muscatel grapes from which the famous Málaga wines are made. If you are here on a Thursday, take time to wander around its weekly market, always an enjoyable experience.

The oldest part of the town, known as Arrabal de San Sebastián, is a picturesque area of narrow streets (mostly pedestrian). You will also come across attractive mansions built during the 16th and 17th centuries, including the recently restored Palacio del Marqués de Beniel, which hosts the International Summer School of the Axarquía covering all aspects of culture including flamenco concerts.

Of special note, among the several churches to be found in the town, is the 15th-century church of Santa María la Mayor, whose beautiful sectioned tower still holds the minaret of the mosque that preceded it. This church was the first building to be erected by the Christians, following their victory over the Moors.

The San Juan Bautista church, nearby the house, is also interesting for its late Gothic architecture and superbly naturalistic sculpture Cristo Crucificado by Pedro de Mena.

Amongst the festivities and special events, a prestigious guitar competition takes place annually in July with free concerts taking place on the patio of the Palacio del Marqués de Beniel. But the most important event of the year is the Royal San Miguel festival, held at the end of September and the beginning of October each year. Other festivals celebrated include the Veladilla el Carmen, Santiago (St James) and Santa Ana. There is also a Holy Week procession, one of the most notable and followed in Andalusia.

As capital of La Axarquía, Velez is on the western part in the Malaga province, famous for its white attractive villages dating from Moorish times. It is also superb hiking country and its numerous steep mountainsides make it ideal for climbers. Its highest peak is La Maroma, at 2,080m.

There are many caves, the most famous being those at Nerja (less than 20 km from Velez). Others are near the sierras’ highest peak, at La Sima de la Maroma, and close to the village of Canillas de Aceituno. Its abundance of caves makes speleology a popular activity here. Its relative remote nature has meant that it has a high number of endemic species of flora and is rich in wildlife, particularly birds of prey and mountain birds.

Located seven hundred metres above sea level with stunning views of the surrounding mountains, countryside and Mediterranean, Competa is best known to many for its locally produced wine, available both dry and sweet, as well as being plentiful and cheap. One of the most popular annual fiestas here is the Noche del Vino (Night of the Wine) on the 15th August which features a programme of flamenco and sevillana music and dance, plus plenty of free-flowing vino.

One of the highest pueblo blancos (white villages) in Andalucía (739 metres above sea level), Comares can be spied for miles around, rising high above the surrounding countryside and resembling a natural extension to the craggy rock face, and just 20 km from Velez.

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