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Article by: Mari info@alpujarra-living.com Published: 13/11/2008

The region of mountain villages knwon Las Alpujarras clings to the suthern flanks of the Sierra Nevada, with its deep sheltered valleys & gorges which runs down to the Mediterranean.

The Alpujarra as it is popularly known is famous throughout Spain because of its unique mini-ecology. Its terraced farmlands are constatly watered by the melting snow from above, constituting a high-altitude oasis of greenery & an abundance of beautiful wild flowers, which are of such a different contrast to the arid foothills below.

This terrain is ideal for hikers that are adventurous, but also perfect for walks & simply enjoying the stunningly, brathtaking & somewhat dramatic views.

The cultural interest of the region lies in approsmiately some 50 villages or so, which were the last stronghold of the Spanish Muslims, or Moors.

Soon after the Castillians took Granada in 1942, all the city's Moors were forced to convert to Christianity.

Those who refused took to the hills, settling in this remote & inaccessible area.

Constant pressure from the Christians led to a bloody up-rising, the Morish Rebellion of 1568, which was ruthlessly crushed out with the public execution of the leader Aben Humeya. This took place in the main square of Granada.

Soon followed a royal decree expelling from the Kingdom of Granada all people of Arab descent, since the "New Christians", as the converts were called, were all suspected of being (crypto-muslims) in secret...

The villages of the Alpujarra were resettled with some 12.000 christian families brought by King Philip II from Galicia and Asturias in north-western Spain. However, these unique hamlets have retained their traditional Berber architecture - terraced clusters of grey-white box-shaped houses with flat clay roofs - which is still common in the Rif and Atlas mountains of Morocco.

Perhaps the most picturesque villages are the famous Válor, the village's Moros y los Cristianos, a popular festival dating from the 16th century, is one of the most famous in Spain. As one of the last regions to harbour the Moors, the Alpujarras is one of the best places to whatch these pageants.

The staging of the colourful re-enactement of the battle between the Moors and the Christians, the Moros y los Cristianos, is held as part of the village's Fiestas Patronales on 14-15 September, which coincide with celebrations dedicated to Santo Cristo de la Yedra, the patron of the Alpujarras.

The notorius Morisco rebel Aben Humeya, leader of the 1568 revolt against the Christians, was born in the village in the Casa Palacio de Aben Humeya, and Válor was an outpost of Moorish resistance to the incrasingly powerful Catholics. Internal differences weakened the Moriscos and they were expelled in 1609, when the village was repopulated with Christians from Jaen province.

 

External Article Link: http://www.property-partnership.com/overseas-property-guides/overseas-property-guide.cfm?id=157

Article Link: http://www.property-partnership.com/overseas-property-guides/overseas-property-guide.cfm?id=157

Please contact the author at info@alpujarra-living.com for more information.

 

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