Places of interest in Grazalema

Iglesia de la Aurora. Grazalema, monumento de planta ortogonalThis 18th century religious monument is notable for its central octagonal floor plan and its drum-shaped cupola. It is without doubt the most important building in the historic centre of Grazalema. On the outside is a supporting column, also octagonal, and covered in tiles.

The facade forms a flat wall with supporting pilasters at each corner, a unique decorative element but also like those that mark the facade up to the middle, with lateral columns supporting a bisected angular arch, or frontón partido, at the centre of which rises a vaulted niche. This facade is crowned by three belfries, the two furthest with a cut section to distribute weight load, opening a gap for the bells, while the central belfry itself lacks a bell. In truth, the church is in an unfortunate state of ruin, which prohibits access to the interior.

Address: Pza. de España, 8.

Tel: 956132010

IGLESIA DE NTRA. SRA. DE LA AURORA

IGLESIA DE SAN JOSÉ

This religious monument dates from the 17th century, and was originally part of a Carmelite convent. The cupola features preserved canvases painted by a disciple of Bartolomé Murillo. The church is constructed on a Latin cross plan, with a central nave, transept and two lateral side chapels separated from transept and nave by semi-circular arches. At the foot of the nave is the main entrance and the choir.

The apse is of testero (shell) plan and has three vaulted niches, the central niche with the Virgen del Carmen, and above that, a beautiful canvas of the Inmaculada, represented in the manner of the vision seen by Beatriz de Silva in the 16th century; that is, with a white tunic and blue cape, surrounded by cherubs, some of them symbols alluding to the Immaculate Conception.

In the transept there is a cupola over curvilinear triangle supports decorated below with representations of the Disciples.

Address: C/ San José, 30

Tel: 956132010

IGLESIA DE SAN JUAN.

This 18th century church was built over the foundations of an earlier Arabic mezquita, conserving some Mudéjar arches in the tower. The church is on a quadratic plan, with three naves, the central nave higher and wider than its neighbours, and covered by a semi-circular vaulted ceiling. Access to the apse is via a step. The most interesting detail to point out is the tower, also on a quadratic plan and divided into various levels, the higher part with jointed corners with semi-freestanding pilasters. It has slit openings in each face. The lower part retains a restored brick Moorish arch. It is now the home of the local youth culture centre, the Centro Cultural Juvenil.

Adress: C/ José Mª Jiménez, s/n.

Tel: 956132010

IGLESIA PARROQUIAL DE NTRA. SRA. DE LA ENCARNACIÓN.

Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la EncarnacionThis church dates from the early decades of the 17th century, and was originally of Mudéjar, Arabic-Spanish, design. It was reconstructed in the 18th century, after its partial destruction by French armies during the War of Independence and the first Civil War. Only a small chapel remains from the original Mudéjar bulding.

It has a Latin cross plan with three naves. The central nave is covered with a vaulted ceiling reinforced with belted ‘perpiaño’ arches that are divided in various sections. The lateral naves are supported by dintels and separated at the centre by a semicircular arch, supported on pillars, with semi-freestanding pilasters whose.

Corinthian capitals are outstanding in the architectural plan for their gold colouring. These pillars also have jointed corners and are supported at floor level by bases and pedestals.

The apse is covered in a similar fashion to the central nave by a vaulted roof and is of testero (shell) plan, but lacks a central altarpiece. The apses of the lateral naves are covered with decorated vaulted ceilings. In the transept there is a cupola above curvilinear triangular supports.

At the entrance to the church, we also see the two entrance doors that coincide with the lateral naves and in the centre is a baptismal font and the high choir.

In this church there also remain examples of religious sculpture from its era: a representation of the Virgen del Rosario, a figure of San Antonio and an image of San Atanasio made in 1602 by icon-maker Amaro Velásquez.

Adress: Pza. de España, 6.

Tel: 956132010

ERMITA DE LOS ÁNGELES

Hermitage, or chapel, built in the 20th century.

Regarded as a fairly recent addition to Grazalema’s ecclestiastical architecture, set on the outskirts of the town, in an area of great natural beauty at the feet of the mountains: it comprises a small precinct or area covered with a saddle or gable roof, with a Gothic access porch and a small belfry completing the building. It is dedicated to Our Lady of the Angels, patroness of the village, whose icon is carried through the parish on annual religious festivals and during processions such as Semana Santa.

Adress: Ctra. Grazalema – Ronda.

Tel: 956132010

LACILBULA

Lacilbula, villa romanaRoman villa with both civil and military structures, dating from the 2nd century.Found at some miles from the source of the río Guadalete, the remnants of this Roman settlement are among the most noteworthy of the Roman ruins that dot the mountains of the Cádiz region. Founded on the Guadalete riverbank, on the higher reaches of the mountainside, it’s believed that the ruins found here were once an important settlement and a major link in communications between the Guadalquivir river valley and the coast of Cádiz. Wall paintings, fortified towers, works suggesting an infrastructure and fragments of paved roadways show that this was a busy and important urbanized centre with social, administrative, business and military functions.

Nearest landmark/direction: Cortijo del Clavijo

TOWN HALL

Civil building from the 20th century.Inaugurated in 1961, its facade is organised on a lower floor behind an exterior loggia with three semicircular arches over quadrilangular pillars and a ‘lookout’ tower at one side. The second part comprises a wide terrace with rectilinear vents. The interior houses various local government offices.

Address: Pza. de España, 1

Tel: 956132011

ERMITA DEL CALVARIO

An ancient country hermitage or chapel, destroyed during the Civil War and isolated on a mountainside adjacent to the town. (It’s signposted on the road above Grazalema.)

PLAZA DE ESPAÑA

In Grazalema’s central square we see most of the emblematic monuments of the town, such as the ayuntamiento, the Iglesia Parroquial de Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación and the Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Aurora.

 

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