A lovely walk in Andalusia’s Lecrín Valley
The Lecrín Valley lies just off to the side of its better known counterpart the Sierra Nevada (famous for its high altitude ski resort and the region known as the Alpujarras on its lower flank).
I have just returned from a week long stay in the Lecrín Valley and what an enjoyable trip it was. One of the highlights, a 10km walk which impressed and surprised me in equal measure. As beautiful as it is varied, the route I followed is known as the Ruta de las Fuentes y Atalya de Cónchar. A fuente is a river source, several of which are encountered on this route, and I’ll explain what an Atalaya is shortly.
Here’s a map of the route. If it’s hard to make out what’s what, notice that it’s circular in nature. In other words you finish where you started (my favourite type of trek):
The early stages of the walk followed a dry river bed and then took me through olive groves so typical of this part of Spain.
Next there was a short climb up to the Atalaya, with the Sierra Nevada serving as a stunning backdrop:
As you may know, Spain was once occupied by the Moors for hundreds of years, and one of the ways they defended their territory was by building these sentry points – Atalayas – on raised ground. From there they could spot the enemy and warn neighbouring villages of the impending danger. There’s no window or door and I wondered how they used to get in and out of this stone structure. A long ladder perhaps?
Next I came to an almond tree. Boy did they taste good.
Further down the track and to a river with water this time. Flanking the river, bamboo:
Later on I encountered orange trees by the side of the track. They tasted sweeted and succulent.
With the trees showcasing their riches, is there a better time of year to take a walk in Andalusia than in January?
I haven’t even mentioned other sweet finds along the way, such as the grenadines (from which the city of Granada takes its name) or the kaki fruit!
Have you ever taken a walk in this part of the world? Do share your experience…
Jim Porter is a co-founder of Speekee®, the most comprehensive Spanish for kids learning program ever to appear online. Jim’s work includes this homeschool Spanish curriculum and this homeschool Spanish curriculum (not a misprint – he wrote two!) and this Primary School Spanish curriculum.
Jim began his Spanish learning journey in 1990. He has been a language teacher since 1994 and he lives in sunny southern Spain. He has two bilingual children. More…