AREA: 74,50 km² ALTITUDE ABOVE
SEA LEVEL: 540 metres AVERAGE ANNUAL RAINFALL: 625 l/m²
HISTORY AND LANDSCAPE
The municipality of Villanueva de Algaidas is situated in the northeast of the Antequera region, in the limits with the provinces of Malaga and Cordoba. Its territory is dominated by a generally smooth relief in which there are abundant hills. Only on the border does the relief appear more abrupt and corresponds to the Sierra de Arcas (948 m.) and the Sierra de Pedroso (1024 m.). Apart from these two sierras, the landscape of the municipality is dominated by olive groves and small areas of cereal fields, speckled with farm houses.
In the areas of the sierra and the hilly terrain occupied by crops, the surroundings correspond to the remains of ancient oaks and thickets.
Athough the caves in the nearby sierra del Pedroso could have been inhabited in remote times, the origins of the town go back to the end of the 18th century or beginning of the 19th. The duke of Osuna, owner of this spot, gave permission for the building of the convent for the Franciscan monks next to the Burriana brook, whose ruins can still be seen today. Small population nuclei began to emerge around the convent and later would become the municipality.
This happened when a county council was erected which annexed to the dispered town which was then called La Rinconá.
The primitive nucleus is today known as La Atalaya and is about one kilometre from the present town. That is how the suburbs of Atalaya, la Rinconá, Zamarra, Albaicín, and Parrilla emerged which were later joined to form the town council of Villanueva de Algaidas.
Places to Visit
The town offers, as its only historical building, the remains of the franciscan convent which was the nucleus of the initial town. Near the convent there is a rock church from the 17th century.
The necropolis of the Alcaides has a special relevence in Villanueva de Algaidas. It is a model for the design of prehisoric mans habitat. The cave of Sierra de Arcas is also interesting, as well as the El Pedroso cave, which appears to have been inhabited in the past.
There is a small museum with works from the famous sculptor, Ortiz de Berrocal, native of the town. As popular architecture, there are the curious houses with two rooms separated by a yard in the middle.
There is no local handicraft, but there are various oil factories and one for preparations.
As with all the region, there is a local variety of the porra antequerana, and there is also porra crúa, salmorejo, and ajoblanco, as well as the typical sweets.
FESTIVITIES AND TRADITIONS
They celebrate San Marcos on the 25th of April, and the Exaltación de la Cruz on the 4th of May in honour of the Virgen de la Consolación, the tradition being to spend the day in the country side with family and friends.
The main fair takes place in mid September. There is a tradition which is almost lost now where the local poets have "singing conversations", which on most occasions ended in heated discussions.