Welcome to my new blog where I will write about the many villages in my surrounding area, and further afield. I begin with today’s visit to Lubrin but in the weeks to come I will be posting some older blogs, many of which go back eleven years and written during my wonderful time as a member of the expat writing group, Writers Abroad, sadly no longer.
We take to the road mid-morning heading for Lubrin. From Arboleas, my beautiful village, the drive is through pleasant countryside, scattered here and there with farm buildings and small homesteads. Among natural countryside, orchards and groves, I note expanses of untilled land and wonder whether on a future visit trees or crops will have been planted.
Entering the town, situated in the foothills of the Sierra de los Filabres, one is greeted by the customary narrow, quite steep streets, found in villages perched on mountainsides. While wending through, I spot the Plaza de Constitucion and a cafe-bar. Time for coffee and tostadas, I think. Luckily, a parking spot becomes available a short walk from the square.
Sitting in the shade on a rather hot day, temperature high thirties, I take in the comings and goings of locals, the Lubrinenses, and the holiday makers enjoying the life of this town. The inhabitants of villages and towns in this region are inevitably friendly, passing the time of day with complete strangers. Lubrin is no exception. In fact it comes across as one of the friendliest places I have ever visited. Neighbours of the bar, tradesmen, and fellow drinkers never fail to call ‘hola’ or ‘buenos dias’ accompanied by a wave.
The origins of the Lubrin of today date from 1528. This was when the village was re-populated after the first Alpujarron rebellion which resulted in the banishment of the Moors who refused to abandon their faith. It left Lubrin and many other regions uninhabited. With the intention of populating it again, twenty-eight Christian families of old stock from Lorca to Galicia were brought to the village to live and work. They were able to exploit the abundance of wheat crops and olive orchards. Today, from a population of 8,000 in its heyday, the village is reduced to around 2,000 inhabitants.
Our Lady of the Rosary (Nuestra Señora del Rosario) is the beautiful Parish Church nestling in the centre of the town. It is a must to visit.
The Castle Clocktower stands high on a hilltop overlooking the town. It marks where Lubrin’s Moorish Castle stood as early as 1309. It was last mentioned in the land registry of 1750. Should you have the stamina, take Calle Zacatin and follow the footpath to the tower from where you will be rewarded with spectacular views of the entire town.
Walking through the town today was stepping back to the time of the Moors, their influence for ever carved into the fabric of this popular town. Despite its ancient history, or because of it, the locals have every facility on their doorstep. What a rich environment this town offers to its people, and those who spend but a short time here.
There is so much more to explore and I will be back in the near future to seek out the many other hidden treasures of Lubrin.
Lubrín Almeria (Turismo Lubrin)
Lubrín Almeria (Turismo Lubrin)