Álora, historically one of the most important towns in the region has long been a well-kept secret. It has blossomed into a hive of cultural activity in recent years with a new theatre and arts centre and regular festivals and events – and its now well-known for its annual Trail Running competitions (January) and half marathons (March) organised by the Álora running club.
Álora’s main fiesta is the flamenco festival, Cante Grande de Álora, which is held annually in October. Another popular traditional event is the Romería de la Virgen de las Flores which takes place in the middle of September and is one of the best places to enjoy the Verdiales (traditional folk dances and singing, which is unique to this part of Málaga province).
Monday is market day in Álora when the streets become alive with stallholders and shoppers; the opportunity to browse local produce and artisan crafts.
If you’re interested in traditional Andalusian crafts and produce, you should head to La Tienda Gavia, on the road between Álora and Finca Gran Cerros (near to km42 at coordinates: 36.834128, -4.688060). The family-run Country Store sells fantastic farm-fresh fruit and vegetables, local Álora wines, honey, and preserves, as well as pottery and artisan hand-crafted products and gifts.
And just down the road, Molina Aceitero ‘La Molina’ produces local Aloreña Olives, world-famous as the only olive to be protected by the Designation of Origin.
Take the time to stroll the lovely winding streets, filled with independent shops, bodegas and cafés (El Taller, next to the theatre, near the Post Office, does great tapas!) and soak up the friendly, laid-back atmosphere. Explore the architecture and marvel at the town’s long history.
This printable map of Álora will help you find your way around this lovely town, and ensure you don’t miss any of its many interesting sights.
STEEPED IN HISTORY
The busy working town retains its traditional rural charm with the stunning Arabic castle at the top of Cerro de las Torres a reminder of the town’s rich and important history. Below the famous castle, the winding white-washed streets are alive with the Moroccan and Roman influences of years gone by.
The castle has had a busy history! It was originally built by Phoenicians, before being expanded under Roman rule, later to be destroyed by Visigoths in the fifth century, only to be rebuilt once more by the Moors in 1462.
The Muslim minaret with its ornate brickwork is still clearly visible today, and the illuminated castle makes a spectacular sight after dark.
Below the castle is Plaza Baja, the town’s lower square, home to the impressive 17th century Catholic church, Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación.
Next to the church is the municipal museum which dates from the 16th century. It’s built in a traditional Mudéjar style with stone columns and intricate brickwork with typically Moorish influenced geometric patterns. It’s thought to have been the Hospital Chapel of St. Sebastian, built by the Catholic Monarchs.
Today, the museum showcases the rich history and the importance of the town through artefacts and informative displays.