Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Sierra de Aracena – The walk of the Sylvan Valley

After our little side-trip to Jabugo we were off on a walk. As always, we had Guy Hunter-Watts in our pocket to help us out. We chose this walk as he called it an ‘exceptionally pretty circuit’ which was enough for us to drive down to Galaroza and set off on this 12.5km route.

It was a nice, easy walk between huge oak forests that all served one thing, to provide food for the famous black pigs. We have seen plenty of the trees themselves and the ground was literally covered with bellotas or acorns and it all looked like a perfect pig heaven  but we couldn’t see any of the famous animals.

We kept our eyes and ears peeled but nothing suggested that there are pigs around. Even though we were both looking for them our line of thoughts were completely different as the following conversation proves it.
Edit: - Where are all the pigs?
Paul: - They are all dead!
Edit: - I wonder where they all could be.
Paul: - In the shops, hanging from strings.
Edit: - I can’t believe we’ve come all the way here and we can’t see any.
Paul: - But we have eaten many!

Finally we got to our halfway point which was another village, Castano del Robledo. It sits on the side of a hill, all white and sparkly.

The only problem was that it was completely empty! Where were all the people? We found them on the main square sitting in front of the bars and drinking.

I decided that this is my favourite village in the whole Andalusia. It is as rural as it gets in Spain. The main square was right behind the church. On one side there was a proper no-frills bar with only its name attached above the door, no other decoration seemed to be necessary from the outside.The other bar was even better. The sign above it only said ‘BAR’ and this seemed to be enough information for the whole village. Above it, in the same building was the village’s town hall, the Ayuntamiento. As I said: no frills. 

The way back was lovely in the sun however remained uneventful, we didn’t see any pigs or other tourists at all. 

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