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Priego de Córdoba

Priego de Córdoba is a town and municipality of southern Spain in the extreme southeastern portion of the province of Córdoba, near the headwater of the Guadajoz River, and on the northern slope of the Sierra de Priego. The population in 2008 was 22,558.

Priego de CordobaThe oldest church was built in the 13th century and subsequently restored; it has a fine chapel. There are ruins of an, originally Moorish, castle (currently (2006) under restoration) having been a fortified city of the Moors (with the Hispano-Arabic name Baguh) which was captured by the Christians under Ferdinand III in 1225, lost again in 1327, and finally retaken in 1340 by Alfonso XI.

Some of the best examples of the Spanish Baroque are found in the numerous churches in Priego. The first President of the Second Spanish Republic, Niceto Alcala-Zamora, was from Priego. Priego is a village found on the 'Ruta de la Califata' (trade route of the Califa).

The oldest section of Priego is its Barrio de la Villa. It is bordered on one side by the town's natural fortress, a high cliff. The alleys that wind through this part of the town are Moorish in style, decorated proudly by the populace with flower pots and religious icons. Some homes retain the ancient tunnel system that went from their cellars (bodegas) to the castle.

Its economy is based on agricultural products, mainly olive oil and cereals. The olive oil from Priego has been given its own denominational label. The olive oils have recently garnered many of the most prestigious prizes in international competitions. It's oils are used in the gourmet San Nicasio potato chips.

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Martos

The Town of Martos is located in the province of Jaen in Andalucía in Southern Spain.

It has a population of 24061 inhabitants, making Martos the fifth largest municipality in the province. The city is located on a western peak of the Sierra Jabalcuz mountain range. Its economy is based on agriculture, in particular the cultivation of the olive tree. Martos is considered to be the first producer of olive oil in the world.

The Town is steeped in history and has been linked to the Roman settlement of Colonia Augusta Gemella and starting in the 8th century was ruled by the Moors under various Islamic states for over 500 years. In 1225, King Ferdinand III of Castile and Leon captured the Town from the Moors and incorporated it into his kingdom.

Today Martos is quite a cosmopolitan Town as it has an old Town and a New Town. The Old town proudly still shows off its historic and traditional past whilst the new town has modern bars and restaurants there really is something for everyone.

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Alcala la Real

Alcala la Real

Alcala la Real has a population of approximately 21,000 and is located between Cordoba and Granada however it falls within the Jaen province.

The town has an impressive fortress which looks magnificent when illuminated during the evening. It was a strategic stronghold during medieval times, and subsequently occupied by the Moors in 713. Alcala la real has been the scene of frequent battles between the Moors and the Christians over the years and the presence of both is still apparent around the Town.
Today it is a thriving Town and its weekly market brings people in from surrounding villages in the area.

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Alcaudete

Located on the West side of the Sierra Sur region of the province of Jaen Alcaudete has a population of twelve thousand inhabitants and many historically important buildings.

AlcaudeteThe landscape from the Town is of rolling olive trees and a wealth of nature reserves. The via Verde, a new way of making use of the old abandoned railway passes through here and is ideal for walkers or cyclist.

The Moors built the first fortress during the 8th and 9th Century as protection, the castle seen there today was rebuilt in the 13th and 14th centuries by order of the Calatrava and boasts a commanding hilltop position. The church in front, the Santa Maria was build over the site of a Muslim mosque between the 15th and 17th Centuries and its two huge imposing doorways are decorated with huge columns.

This bustling little market Town has everything to offer that you could need with shops, banks, bars and restaurants with a weekly Saturday market rich in heritage.

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