Size: 187,10 Km?
Population: Approx. 8.500
Residents known as: Archidoneses
Monuments: Plaza Ochavada, Moorish Castle, Hermitage of la Virgen de Gracia, Plaza de la Victoria, Church of the Nazareno and the Plas School, Church of Santa Ana and the M?nimas Convent.
Geographical situation: In the north of the province of Malaga, bordering on the province of Granada, 50 kms from Malaga and 20 from Antequera.
Tourist information: Town Hall, Paseo de la Victoria, 1. 29300.
Phone: 952 714 480 Fax: 952 714 165
Municipal Tourist Office: Plaza Ochavada, 2. Tel: 952 716 479.

Archidona is situated in the northern part of Malaga province, in the Antequera administrative area 20 kilometres from that town, and it borders on the province of Granada. The town itself lies at the foot of the Sierra de Gracia, which is 943 metres above sea level, and is surrounded by the Conjuro peak, 1,013 metres high, and the 971 metre-high Sierra de las Grajas. Its privileged position has resulted in it having been settled at various points throughout its early history, the proof of which is in the various names the place has had over the centuries. The first tribe we have some evidence of was the Turdulo tribe, around 1,500 B.C. The Phoenicians came later and called the place "Escua", which means "The Principal Head", and it is believed to be these who began building the town walls. When finished, these made the town one of the most difficult to conquer, and during the Roman period it was known as "Arx D?mina". The Moors finally named it "Medina Arxiduna", from which it gets its present name. It was in Archidona that one of the most brilliant eras in Spanish history began: the Omeya dynasty in Andaluc?a, and it was here too, at the end of the 9th century and beginning of the 10th century, that the rebellion of the Mulad?es and the Berbers took place, more usually known as the Mozarab rebellion, under the leadership of the Muladi Omar Ben Hafsun. Peace came back to the town under Abd el-Rahman III, first Caliph of Cordoba. The influence of the Cordobans was decisive for the well-being of Archidona, and commerce, industry and agriculture flourished. Following the political disorder of the Taife reign, Archidona and Antequera went into decline, and the walls of Archidona were eventually destroyed. The castle was conquered from the decadent Granada rulers in 1462, and the town we known today began to take shape in the 16th century. The first important urban centre was the Villa Baja, built on the initiative of the Ure?a family, having achieved the sort of political power that had been enjoyed by the people of the Villa Alta. The new colonists settled in the calle Carrera district, which was always the focal point of the town. The hermitages of Santa Catalina (later Convento de la Victoria), Columna and El Nazareno were built about that time.

Restaurante Central. Sea-food grills. Tel: 952 71 48 11.
Mes?n La Estaci?n. Rural mes?n. Specialising in grills and country cooking. Old Muelle Estaci?n. Reservations: 952 71 76 06. Estaci?n de Salinas.
Restaurante Escua. Traditional home cooking. Meats and fish cooked in a wood oven. Ctra. Jerez-Cartagena Km. 176. Archidona. Tel: 952 714 376.
Restaurante Asador Las Vi?as. Specialising in meats roasted in a wood oven. Typical home-made deserts. Ctra. Jerez-Cartagena Km. 181. Archidona. Tel: 952 714 941.
* One can also make a trip through the town centre by the "Ruta del Tapeo", the Tapa Route, visiting the bars along the way.

Hotel Escua (2*). Ctra. Granada - Sevilla Km. 176 . Tel: 952 714 376.
Hostal Las Rejas. Industrial Estate. 952 714 468.
Hotel Central. C/Nueva . Tel: 952 714 013.
Hostal Las Palomas. Tel: 952 714 326.

The most important festival in Archidona is undoubtedly Holy Week, the Semana Santa. Here the very best floats are made, with top quality artwork in the statues carried through the streets at this time. Other big festive events are the carnival in February, the Feria del Perro in June and the big August Feria, in honour of the Virgen de Gracia.

Among the most typical dishes for which Archidona is well-known are the cazuela moruna (Moorish casserole), the egg stew, the porra archidonesa, the sopa ochavada and the gachas de mosto. Other well-known delicacies include the cookies known as bollos de manteca, the doughnuts, the curiously named pesti?os (pesti?o translated as "plain girl") and the traditional desserts of the area, one of which - the "dulces de las monjas m?nimas" - is named after the nuns in the order of the same name.

Archidona is not only a beautiful and historic town, but is also rich in natural surroundings, allowing for rural tourism at its best and a full range of trekking, cycling and general mountain activities. There are two nature trails worth noting in particular: the Hoz del Arroyo Mar?n and the Lagunas (lakes) de Archidona. One reaches the Hoz del Arroyo Mar?n, a tributary of the Guadalhorce, by the road towards Villanueva del Trabuco, the L-222, taking a smaller road that veers off at the quarry and follows the course of the river. There is a barbecue and camping area at the Cortijo Pilatos, and it is at this point that the river runs fast through pine forest and rich vegetation. The Lagunas Grande y Chica (Big and Small Lakes) of Archidona have been officially declared a nature reserve of Andaluc?a. It is a humid area of salt water, rich in sulphates and of high ecological value.
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Villages of
The Axarquia