Fascinating Jaén: its most beautiful villages

Jaén is a wonderful destination to discover its idyllic landscapes and historical monuments. A place to discover new fascinating spots. A clear example are its beautiful villages, small medieval jewels with a special essence. They captivate the visitor with their picturesque streets, their medieval architecture and the impressive walls of their castles. The aim of this article is to outline a tour of the most beautiful villages of this province.

First stop, Cazorla

Cerezuelo river, Cazorla.

Cerezuelo river, Cazorla. | Shutterstock

A must visit is Cazorla since it was declared as a Site of Cultural Interest. This village is located in the heart of the Cerezuelo river valley, at the foothills of the ‘Sierra de Cazorla’ mountain range.  It has a huge cultural wealth as it was considered as a home to Romans, Visigoths and Muslims.

Its picturesque old quarter includes architectural gems that are well worth a visit. Such as the Yedra castle, the palaces of Las Cadenas and its impressive churches. One thing you cannot miss on this visit is, of course, the delicious gastronomy of Jaén. A pleasure for the palate.

La Iruela, a panoramic village

Castle of Iruela.

Castle of Iruela. | Shutterstock

This villages offers one of the most incredible views of the mountain range. La Iruela is a little oasis completed immersed of nature which will fascinate anyone. The perfect option to take a scroll, to spend a nice day or to taste some “tapas”. The monuments that grabs most visitors’ attention are the remains of the castle of high walls. Its restored tower allows the visitor to reach the top to contemplate the village from the heights.

Segura de la Sierra, Arabic heritage

Castle of Segura de la Sierra.

Castle of Segura de la Sierra. | Shutterstock

The next stop is this rural jewel: Segura de la Sierra. This village of Muslim origin is located at an altitude of 1440 metres above sea level and is considered a Historic-Artistic Site. Its architecture includes many noble houses, such as ‘la Casa de Jorge Manrique’, its castle, built in the Muslim period, the ‘Nuestra Señora del Collado’ church and the Arab baths, some of the few that are still preserved in Jaén.

Quesada, the village of arches


Quesada. | Shutterstock

Another remarkable village is a white town surrounded by nature, mountains and with an incredible cultural heritage. Quesada is also known as the village of arches due to its great number of arches in its buildings.  For example, the arch of the ‘Manquita de Utrera’ and the arch of ‘Los Santos’, one of the old entrances to the historic centre.

Its most significant buildings are San Pedro and San Pablo church, the church of ‘the Hospital’ and the ‘Zabaleta’ museum, which is dedicated to the life and works of the painter from Jaén. A very lively town with cheerful neighbourhoods. In the surrounding area there are some essential sites such as the Roman villa of Bruñel and the ‘Cueva del Agua’, a rock formation whose crevices give rise to a waterfall.

Hornos de Segura, peace and nature

Hornos de Segura.

Hornos de Segura. | Shutterstock

It is a small village immersed in the Natural Park of the Sierra de Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas that rises on a hill. For that reason, it could be seen from the distance, a stunning landscape. This destination is the perfect option for those who want to relax and disconnect by some strolls. Some monuments to take into consideration is the tower of its castle, called ‘Torre del Homenaje’, but also is the ‘Nuestra Señora de la Asunción’ church, which was built in the 16th century in Gothic style.

Baños de la Encina, a village full of walls

Castle of Burgalimar.

Castle of Burgalimar. | Shutterstock

This peculiar little village is set in a landscape of holm oaks and olive trees. Baños de la Encina is astonishing for several reasons. The main reason is the spectacular Burgalimar castle, declared a National Monument. The impressive stone walls welcome visitors, immersing them in a network of small cobbled streets that lead to its beautiful old quarter.

Baños de la Encina is considered as an Asset of Cultural Interest, mainly for its beautiful old quarter. The gothic church of San Mateo, ‘La Virgen de la Encina’ hermitage, the old towers and its squares are some musts of this little town.

Aldeaquemada, just nature

The Cimbarra. |

The Cimbarra. | Shutterstock

The particularity of this village is where it is set: the heart of ‘Sierra Morena Oriental’ mountain range. To begin with, its outskirts are decorated with an impressive waterfall known as ‘La Cimbarra’. A beautiful waterfall at 40 metres high, which has been declared a Natural Site. Undoubtedly, the best welcome for anyone who goes into the village.

Besides, there are some several cave paintings that have been declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The church of the ‘Purísima Concepción’, the ‘Casa del Comandante’ and the ‘Pósito de Diezmo’ are some of the great icons of Aldeaquemada.

Guarromán, a particular destination


Guarromán. | Shutterstock

Guarromán is a really special name in Spanish since its literally means “dirty man”. However, there are many other facts that makes this destination so interesting. It is located in the ‘Sierra Morena’ mountain range and stands out for being a perfect place to disconnect: its cobbled squares and its streets offer very pleasant strolls. An example would be the ‘Nicolás Kerche’ square, named after the first person who was born in the village. Other places to take into account are the church of ‘La Inmaculada Concepción’ and the monument of ‘Los Mineros’.

Martos, the rock of Jaén

Martos village.

Martos village. | Shutterstock

It is located at the top of a hill, which has adapted to the different demographic periods. Its picturesque houses are organised upwards leading to the castle of ‘La Peña’ and the towers of ‘La Almedina’ and ‘El Homenaje’. The views from these monuments are spectacular. There are some incredible monuments in its old quarter, such as the ‘Cabildo’ prison, the Monumental Fountain and the sanctuary of ‘Santa María de la Villa’.

La Guardia de Jaén, an ancient village

La Guardia de Jaén.

La Guardia de Jaén. | Shutterstock

A perfect destionation for history lovers. According to some documents, la Guardia de Jaén may have been established as a settlement in the Neolithic period, and it was considered a village of great importance until the Reconquest. There are 35 Assets of Cultural Interest that extend around its streets, which shows its historical relevance. Some examples are the Arab castle, the convent of ‘Santo Domingo’, the church of ‘Nuestra Señora de la Asunción’ and the square of Isabel II. However, the best part of this village is its great gastronomic variety. Obviously, another of its attractions is the beautiful natural scenery that surrounds la Guardia de Jaén: the surroundings of ‘Sierra Mágina’ mountain range.

Sabiote, a medieval village

Castle of Sabiote.

Castle of Sabiote. | Shutterstock

The sunsets of Sabiote are breath-taking. Its colours will fascinate you. Sabiote is the clear example of the Medieval Andalusia, a perfect destination. Behind its walls stands the castle of Sabiote, an imposing 16th century construction. It is the first example of the marvellous architecture of the town.

A relaxing stroll through its old quarter is the best option to fall in love with this little town of Jaén. It is necessary to highlight some of its architectural jewels as San Pedro Apóstol church, the medieval quarter of Albaicín and the convent of ‘Santa María’. Sabiote is also known for its mediaeval festivals in which ancient trades are represented, craft markets are organised and traditional gastronomy is offered. The best way to immerse yourself in the fascinating Andalusian culture.

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