Velez de Benaudalla of the
Costa Tropical in the
Granada province is traditional mountain village located near the Mediterranean coast of
Spain in the Andalucia (Andalus) region. Velez de Benaudalla is located next to the
Las Alpujarras region in the shadows of the towering Sierra Nevada mountain range. Velez de Benaudalla is easily accessible by major highway.
Velez de Benaudalla is near
Almeria, and is
readily accessible from the heart of the Costa Tropical, Almuñécar:
The nearest coast is at Salobreña. The large town of Motril is only 15 minutes from Velez de Benaudalla, and the town of Almuñécar situated on the coast of the Costa Tropical is only a little further away.
- Velez de Benaudalla is about 50 minutes drive due south of the city of Granada and Granada airport. Driving from Granada and down the main N323 to the coast, take a left into the well-marked Velez de Benaudalla soon after passing the large dam on the left.
- From Malaga, take the N-340 highway east towards the cities of Almuñécar, Motril, and Almería. In just over an hour upon reaching Salobreña, take the N-323 highway towards Granada. In a few kilometers look for the right turn to Velez de Benaudalla.
Velez de Benaudalla lies on the banks of the river Guadalfeo flowing from the Las Alpujarras, between the Sierra de Lujar and the Sierra de Guajares. It retains much of its Moorish past with its Nasrid Gardens that are a subtle combination of water, trees and garden flowers.
Velez de Benaudalla contains a perfectly preserved fortress and castle, the remains of a mosque, and splendid example of a Moorish garden dating from the Nasrid dynasty, the last dynasty of the Moors to rule the kingdom of Granada. The Moorish garden is beautiful with its fountains, hidden waterfalls and an exuberance of vegetation. Narrow, winding streets of the upper quarter of Velez de Benaudalla are a further attraction of this beautiful village, where water can be heard everywhere. The Tajo waterfall and the Paseo del Nacimiento (path to the source of the river) are also must-sees when visiting here.
Velez de Benaudalla is mentioned in Arab texts from very early times after the XIII Century Muslim conquest of Spain. At this time Velez was made part of a wide territorial area that integrated Salobreña into its district, including small villages in the nearby Valley of the Toba River. In one of the farmhouses of the Valley of the Toba River, today known as cortijo of Bernadilla, remains of burials from this early period have been discovered.
In 1494 after the conquest of Granada by the Christian monarchs and the subsequent expulsion or conversions of Moors, rule over Velez de Benaudalla and the area of
Los Guajares was granted to Don Juan de Ulloa, son of the mayor of Almuñécar Rodrigo de Ulloa, and was repopulated by Christian migrants from other areas of Spain in subsequent years.
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