Antequera Things to Do

  • Franciscan Convent and Mozarab Chapel site
    Franciscan Convent and Mozarab Chapel...
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  • Puente Viejo from below
    Puente Viejo from below
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  • Puente Viejo from above
    Puente Viejo from above
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Most Recent Things to Do in Antequera

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    VISIT THE ALCAZABA

    by LoriPori Written Mar 5, 2012

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    Built by the Moors, the ALCAZABA is a castle - CASTILLO - situated on a hill overlooking Antequera. From up here, there are fabulous panoramic views of the town, including the famous "La Pena" - Lover's Rock.

    HORARIO - Visiting Hours - Monday to Sunday
    Winter Visiting Hours
    Sept. 1 to March 31
    10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

    Spring Visiting Hours
    April 1 to June 30
    10:30 to 2:00 p.m.
    4:30 to 7:00 p.m.

    Summer Visiting Hours
    July 1 to August 31
    10:30 to 2:00 p.m.
    6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

    TARIFAS - Prices
    Real Colegiata de Santa Maria
    Adults 3 Euros
    Children 7-16 1,50 Euros
    Child 6 and under Free

    Alcazaba + Real Colegiata de Santa Maria
    Adults 6 Euros
    Children 7-16 3.00 Euros
    Seniors 3.00 Euros
    Children 6 and under Free

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    CITY SIGHTSEEING BUS - BUS TURISTICO

    by LoriPori Updated Mar 4, 2012

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    An Electric mini CITY SIGHTSEEING BUS - "Bus Turistico", navigates the narrow cobblestone streets of Antequera, to take in some of the monuments, churches and palaces, spread throughout the town. A few from our Hotel group (pics # 2 & #3), hopped on and enjoyed a comfortable ride, while taking in most of the sites Antequera has to offer. The bus goes slow enough to be able to take photos.
    The tour starts at Plaza de San Sebastian. The tour includes the Bullring, Arco de los Gigantes and the Alcazaba where you will have a fabulous view of the town and Lover's Rock - Pena de los Enamorados.
    Cost of the tour was 6 Euros.

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    MUNICIPAL MUSEUM OF ANTEQUERA

    by LoriPori Written Mar 4, 2012

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    The MUNICIPAL MUSEUM OF ANTEQUERA is located in the Palacio de Najera in the Plaza Coso Viejo. Also in the Plaza Coso Viejo, is the equestrian statue of the Infante Don Fernando, who conquered Antequera in 1410. You will also find the Convent of Santa Clara Catalina de Siena.

    Museum is open Tuesday to Friday 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

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    The Dolmens: Monumental and impressive

    by berenices Updated Dec 23, 2011

    The megalithic complex of Antequera, which has 3 impressive and monumental tombs which are very well preserved, is one of the most important prehistoric sites in Europe. The 3 most important tombs to date are the Viera, Menga, and El Romeral. They date from between 4,000 to 3,000 BC, which make them older than the pyramids of Egypt. The dolmens are architectural wonders, and it balks the imagination to think of the ingenuity and literally backbreaking work that was required to break, pull, and hoist slabs that weighed up to 250 tons through sheer muscle power. The objects (and presumably, skeletons) that were excavated from the sites are in the museum of Antequera. In the Menga dolmen (the bigger one), there is an intriguing well or shaft about 20 meters deep, very unusual for prehistoric sites, but which until now has puzzled even the experts. Note also the red drawings on some of the walls of Menga.

    According to archeologists, the complex was built oriented towards La Peña, the mountain at the distance resempling a human face -- it seems plausible that the early settlers associated this mountain to a great Being. Many archeological studies are still being undertaken as more and more discoveries are being made around the area of prehistoric sites.

    The dolmens are located just outside the town, just before the industrial area. It is a bit far to access without private transportation. The two dolmens (Viera and Menga) are adjacent to each other and just beside the Interpretation Center. El Romeral is about 3 kilometers away.

    Entrance is free of charge, and they do not close for lunch break. Car parking is also available in the site.

    The megalithic tomb of Menga The megalithic tomb of Viera
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Archeology

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  • peterdhduncan's Profile Photo

    The Municipal Museum in the Palacio de Najera

    by peterdhduncan Updated Jun 7, 2009

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    The municipal Museum, which is situated in an attractive former palace, is well worth a visit. Its most treasured possession is an Efebo, which is a bronze statue of a naked boy from Roman times. It is believed to have been unearthed by a local farmer whilst ploughing.

    There was a small entry fee, and we were given a guided tour.

    The Courtyard of the Museum The Efebo

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    The Castle

    by peterdhduncan Updated Jun 6, 2009

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    The Alcazaba de Antequera is a fine castle built by the Moors, but subsequently altered by the Christians. situated on a hill overlooking the town, and providing superb views over the town and surrounding countryside, particularly from the top of the battlements and towers.

    When we visited it, entry was free and there were free guided tours available, although we chose to go round on our own. However, we heard that they are intending to introduce a small entry fee.

    Builders were working on a large open area in the centre of the castle, creating what looked as if it would be an events venue for concerts etc.

    The Battlements

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    The Dolmens

    by peterdhduncan Updated Jun 5, 2009

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    The Dolmens are very ancient burial mounds situated on the outskirts of Antequera, which visitors can walk into. Two of them, Dólmen de Menga and Dólmen de Viera are situated adjacent to each other, and the other, the Dólmen del Romeral is situated in a different area a few miles away.

    Entrance to a Dolmen Inside a Dolmen

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    El Torcal Park Nature Reserve

    by peterdhduncan Updated Jun 5, 2009

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    El Torcal Nature Reserve is situated in mountains to the south of Antequera and is famous for its fascinating rock formations. There are also excellent views from it over the surrounding countryside.

    View from El Torcal Park Nature Reserve

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    Antequera is worth a stop

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Apr 5, 2009

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    One of our guidebooks on Spain mentioned that the impressive El Torcal Nature Park was located not far from Antequera so, on our drive from Granada to Sevilla, we decided to make a small detour into Antequera to see what it was all about. The history of the city goes back 5000 years to the Bronze Age and features two burial dolmens from that era that are the largest in Europe. Over the centuries, it became a very important city because of its strategic location almost midway between Granada, Sevilla, Cordoba and Malaga but, as with everything, times changed and it has now become just another beautiful little city in Spain, with tourism as its main livelihood.

    We had initially intended to take a little walk around downtown but realized that seeing the limestone formations of El Torcal Nature Park was a higher priority on our list. As a result, we skimmed through the outskirts of town and took this photo from one of Antequera's hillsides. In the distance is another of these formations - an 880 m high massif known as La Peña de los Enamorados, or "The Lovers' Leap". Legend has it that a young Christian man from Antequera fell in love with a beautiful Moorish girl from a nearby town. This did not go down well with the Moorish soldiers, who chased the couple to the top of mountain. In the end, they both lept to their deaths rather than renounce their love for each other.

    Antequera and distant
    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Photography

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    Check out an abandoned house

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 29, 2009

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    As we drove south out of Antequera on the way to Torcal Nature Park, we could not help but notice an old stone house sitting beside the N3310 secondary highway as we cruised along. We did not stop for a closer look because our main target was the park itself - we did not even know if the park was open! However, on our return trip a couple of hours later we decided to stop for a closer look at the building, because the sun was already starting to cast long winter shadows that were beginning to reach its ruins.

    The way the stone walls at the front of the house had been torn away made me think that this house must have been a casualty of highway improvements, because the N3310 ran past only a few feet from it. All the window and door frames had been removed, leaving nothing standing but the stone skeleton. It was a nice little stop that reminded me of similar abandoned houses in eastern Canada, along with thoughts of what it's history had been - then we were off to continue our trip to Sevilla.

    Sue approaches the old house by N3310 highway Sue's pic from other side - front torn off Looking into the shell from the highway
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    An old Moorish fortress

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 29, 2009

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    As we were leaving Antequera for our short drive to the south, we came across this former Moorish fortress (or 'alcazaba') standing guard on a hillside overlooking the city. As the Christian kings gradually regained control of central Spain from the Moors around the year 1212, Antequera became important as one of the defensive outposts of the Moorish Nasrid dynasty based in Granada. This old fortress held off various attacks for almost two centuries until the city finally fell to the Christians in 1410, with Granada following it in 1492.

    Once again, the ever-present "Lover's Leap" can be seen in the background of the 2nd photo.

    The restored Moorish fortress in Antequera The fortress and distant limestone crag Antequera suburbs around the fortress
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    • Road Trip
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces

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    There is life in this rugged area

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 27, 2009

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    Although the rocks were looking quite bare during our late-December visit (2nd photo) with only a few green-leafed bushes interspersed here and there, El Torcal comes alive with various plant and animal life at other times of the year. In Spring, the soil gradually formed over the centuries by the erosion of the rocks provides life for red peonies, orchids and lilies as well as other flowers. Wild rose bushes also grow amid the rocks providing a splash of colour to rival that of the flowers.

    As far as animals are concerned, the park is home to species such as badgers, weasels, mountain goats and even the rare Iberian Lynx. Of course with so many rocks to hide among and sun themselves on, it is also a paradise for lizards and the huge 2-m Montpelier snake. Soaring above looking for snacks of any sort, you may also be lucky enough to spot a Griffon Vulture with its 2.6 m (~8 ft) wingspan.

    Beside the viewing platform railing A real jumble of rocks in some places
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    • National/State Park
    • Road Trip

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    Visitor's Centre

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 20, 2009

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    Once you have driven to the top of El Torcal Nature Park, the road ends at a nice parking lot surrounded by the rock formations and with a modern Visitor Centre located there as well (at 1100 m above sea level). It is open all year from Wednesday to Sunday between 10 AM and 2:30 PM, so we just happened to get lucky as we were in the area on a Sunday at about 11 AM! There were not many visitors in the building when we arrived, so it seemed a bit spacious.

    The Visitor Centre features a small gift shop, a museum, washrooms, information boards describing the flora and fauna that inhabit this rocky piece of Spain and a large indoor gathering area where groups can form up for hiking expeditions.

    According to the 'Andalusia.com' website, the marked (using coloured arrows) hiking trails available from the Visitor Centre include:

    - The short and easy 1.5 km Green route which normally takes about 30 minutes
    - The medium distance and difficulty 2.5 km Yellow route, providing great views of the valley leading to distant Malaga as well as a rock formation known as 'Las Ventanillas' (The Windows) at 1200 m elevation
    - If you want to get serious, the 4.5 km Red route takes about 3 hours to hike to the view point at 1336 m elevation (the highest in the park), from which you can see the entire Park and even the North African coastline on a good day

    Unfortunately, we still had to reach Sevilla and then find our hostal in the heart of the city, so we had to pass on these very interesting sounding hiking trails.

    Walking back to visitor's centre from view point Distant VC by tall rock formation as we drive up
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    Explore El Torcal Nature Park Reserve

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 20, 2009

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    It did not take us long to reach the amazing El Torcal Nature Park Reserve from Antequera, an extremely interesting area of eroded karst (limestone) rock formations in a weird variety of shapes. The rocks originated from layers of sediment deposited on a shallow seafloor until, about 100 million years ago, the entire area was up-lifted by violent movements of the Earth's crust as the plates shifted. What you see today is the result of wind, rain and freezing actions gradually eroding these layers of sediments over the years since they were exposed above the sea. Being one of the most spectacular landscapes of its type in Europe, this 17 square kilometre area was declared a Natural Site of National Interest in 1929 and subsequently a Nature Park Reserve in 1978. Topping out at 1336 m (4383 ft), its highest peak is Camorro de las Siete Mesas.

    After arriving at the visitor centre, we immediately walked out to its nearby viewing area looking toward the Mediterranean coast where we could enjoy both the rock formations and the long distance views. The last photo shows the small community of Villanueva de la Concepción below in the Guadalhorce valley which stretches off into the distance. We could actually see the Mediterranean Sea off Malaga 35-40 km away, in that bright area on the horizon at the right!

    A scene from the main viewing area Layers of sediment exposed as limestone rocks The village below & distant Mediterranean Sea
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    • Road Trip
    • National/State Park

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    Unique rock formations

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 19, 2009

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    I regretted that our time in Torcal was so short that we could not properly enjoy the outstanding landscape scenes that were assaulting our eyes! The shapes of the rock formations are amazing enough even though they are beside the road - I can only imagine what they must be like if you manage to get some time to hike there. Even in winter there was green vegetation showing between the various rock formations.

    I guess the ruggedness and high altitude of El Torcal made it an ideal place in which to settle during pre-historic times - possibly explaining the Neolithic remains that were found in one of its caves, now known as the 'Cave of the Bull'. Evidence of more 'modern' habitation (by the Romans) has also been uncovered in the park.

    Whatever it's history, after two hectic days of dealing with traffic and 'big city' life in Granada, I was more than ready for the short but tranquil time we spent just enjoying the scenery of El Torcal Nature Park!

    Jagged peaks of limestone Amazing layered formations with trees growing!
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    • Photography
    • National/State Park
    • Road Trip

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