Towns of the province of GRANADA: Almuñécar - Bubión (Alpujarra) - Capileira (Alpujarra) - Carchuna - Galera - Granada - Guadix - Güejar Sierra - Huétor Tájar - La Herradura (Almuñécar) - Lanjarón (Alpujarra) - Loja - Mecina Bombarón (Alpujarra) - Monachil - Motril - Orgiva (Alpujarra) - Pampaneira (Alpujarra) - Pitres (Alpujarra) - Purullena - Riofrío - Salobreña - Yegen (Alpujarra) -
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Situated in the extended and delightful valley which forms the river Genil making its way between the Sierra Gorda and the Monte Hacho, there are many well-preserved archaeological vestiges of the Bronze Age and Muslim eras, amongst which are the remains of its medieval alcazaba and the frotified precincts which y enveloped its old arab-andalucian medina.
A historian once described Loja thus: «It is wild and picturesque, Es agreste y pintoresca, being found at the foot of an arid mountain. The ruins of a Moorish palace crown a rocky pile constructed in the cetre of the town. The River Genil covers its footprint…».
It is understood that Loja was the «gate and key to the Kingdom of Granada» for the Catholic Monarchs. The Arabic name of Loja, Medina Lauxa (“The Guardian City”), refers to its enormous strategic importance and to the very important military role it played during the Christian conquest of the Kingdom of Granada. So important did King Fernando and Queen Isabel think of its fall that they in 1486, after three days of siege they spoke clearly about the heraldic coat of arms which the monarch of Aragón was to take: a castle of gold on a bridge of silver with the motto “flower among thorns” inscribed upon it.
Loja has an important monumental legacy which does not fall short on palaces, temples, convents, gardens and country houses. Amongst all of these the church of Mayor de la Encarnación stands out, having been built between the 16th and 18th centuries and been declared a Culturally Signiificant property, as well as the Alcazaba, the old military fortress. In addition there are many guided visits which cover the most emblematic locations in Loja.
In Loja there are a large number of fountains and natural springs spread throughout its urban centre, such as those of the 25 water pipes, or the Santa Fountain, known for the medicinal quality of its water.
(Source: Turgranada and the Granada Tourism Trust)
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The water filtered in the Sierra de Loja, on the banks of the source of the river Genil, have created numerous springs and fountains for centuries, always fresh.The abundance of water is visible in the spectacular paraje de Los Infiernos, with its gargantuan height and always green waterfalls.
Loja has numerous tourist resources. Aside from its historical and monumental legacy, the Sierra de Loja offers routes and hiking trails through rural and surprising locations, such as Charco del Negro.
Its proximity also offers ideal conditions for paragliding, having an ideal take-off point in the Loja Paragliding Resort, while the landing takes place in the esplanades of Venta del Rayo, a very suitable spot.
There are also caves where you can go potholing (There are more than 50 catalogued caves in the municipal district) or also Rock Climbing.
One of the most popular routes starts outside the distict, in La Esperanza. This is a residential annex close to the town. In the municipal district of La Esperanza the visitor can enjoy the waterfalls of ‘Cola del Caballo’ if he approaches the viewpoint of los Infiernos. A series of signs tell visitors of the route they are taking to the spectacular canyon sculpted by the water dring thousands of years of flowing through the place.
Los Infiernos originate from the natural karstic aquifers of the mountains of Loja and the Hacho, these ending in the river Genil after the springs of Manzanil and the Frontil. This stretch of the river Genil is home to rich riverside flora and fauna, together with prominent elements of geological interest, to which the other prehistoric sites and the Manzanil can be added.
Amongst all of this the spectacular travertines (a type of sedimentary rock) must be metioned which help create unique scenery, with strange-looking forms which arose as a result of rainfall containing chalky materials dissolved into watersgoverned by environmental conditions. Certain things stand out for their ecological and environmental importance such as the riverside woodlands with their characteristc species such as willow, poplar and elm trees.
Another possible excursion is Sierra Martilla: Drive along the road to Priego until reaching los Ventorros de San José a Las Rozuelas, where you will find Sierra Martilla, home to an archaeological site containing important excavated magalithic remains – a series of double-chambered dolmens with corridor which are unique in Spain.
Loja Spain. Tourism in Loja Holidays in province of GRANADA, Spain. SOL Spain On Line.
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