Green Travel Guide to Las Alpujarras
There’s no denying the ‘Chris Stewart Effect’ in Las Alpujarras – the southern slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountains in Andalucia’s Granada and Almería provinces. Before the former Genesis drummer penned Driving Over Lemons, his paean to farm life in a rural Alpujarran community, few of us could pinpoint the region on a map. Today, Las Alpujarras is a byword for rustic Spanish idyll.
Photo credits: Diana Jarvis
Foreword by James Keane, Inntravel Product Manager for Spain and Portugal
Nestling in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, mainland Spain’s highest mountain range, Las Alpujarras is a region seemingly untouched by the passage of time. The melting snow from the highest peaks is channelled along acequias – water channels dating from Moorish times – to water the fertile lower slopes, while farmers send their sheep to pasture on higher ground.
This is an area completely in tune with the seasons: spring is heralded by the appearance of almond blossom, autumn brings sweet chestnuts, and the onset of winter wrestles olives from their branches, soon to be turned into the region’s prized olive oil.
Well-waymarked footpaths – including the long-distance GR7 – connect traditional whitewashed villages, strung out along the steep-sided river valleys and affording fabulous views of the surrounding area. One such village is Trevélez, the highest in Spain and home to the delicious jamón serrano, which is dry-cured in the clean mountain air.
The region has provided literary inspiration, too, from Gerald Brenan’s reflections on the time he spent here in the 1920s and 1930s, South from Granada, to the more recent series of light-hearted memoirs by local resident Chris Stewart, a former Genesis drummer, that began with Driving Over Lemons in 1999.
In this Green Traveller's Guide to Las Alpujarras, we’ve sought out a range of accommodation, highlighting the best things to do and our favourite places to enjoy local food. We hope you enjoy discovering all that this much-overlooked corner of Spain has to offer.
What Green Traveller's writers discovered in Las Alpujarras
Stay, Eat, See & Do
Our pick of places across Las Alpujarras
Google Map Key:
Click on the coloured icons for more information about each listing
Green = Places to stay; Blue = Places to eat; Yellow = Attractions; Purple = Activities
Click on the square brackets top right of map to reveal expanded map
Words by Paul Bloomfield. Photos by Diana Jarvis.
Artwork for Green Traveller's Guides by Tina Smith and Mark Edwards.
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