This route follows the steps followed in 1829 by the American romantic writer Washington Irving, fascinated by the wealth and exoticism of the Spanish-Muslim civilization. A communications artery established many centuries before, which served as a commercial route between the Christian peninsular south and the Nasrid kingdom of Granada. The route joins the capitals of the two traditional Andalusia, Baja and Alta; two plains, the Campiña and the Vega, separated by a suggestive rugged journey. The road oscillates between Seville and Granada, the two obligatory stations of the romantic trip that projected the image of Andalusia in Europe, attracting a multitude of artists, writers, curious and all kinds of travelers. This tour is considered the Great Cultural Itinerary of the Council of Europe.
The Washington Irving route is configured as a vital connecting artery between Seville and Granada, two essential cities of the Hsipano-Muslim civilization.
The itinerary revives the path that the romantic North American writer who gave the route its title, captivated by the exotic splendor and the abundant abundance of the „Arab” vestiges of Andalusia, followed on horseback in 1829.
A historical path that in the Middle Ages served as an important commercial route between the Nasrid kingdom of Granada and the Christian domains.
Seville is the entrance step of the route. Its belt of walls, the Reales Alcázares, La Giralda, … make it a privileged setting for the memories of al-Andalus.
From Seville, the route winds through the countryside and reaches Alcalá de Guadaíra, which runs under the protection of a robust Andalusian fortress. From here, climb up to the monumental Carmona, an artistic ensemble of surprising solidity, then approaching Marchena and Écija, full of towers, churches and palaces brimming with works of art. The prodigious monumental wealth of the Sevillian countryside continues in the ducal town of Osuna and in the neighboring Estepa.
After La Roda de Andalucía, the border is crossed with land from Malaga, where you can admire the salty lagoon of Fuente de Piedra. Humilladero and Mollina, terms of wines and antiques, accompany the way to Antequera, the geographical knot of the region, embellished by a citadel, temples and palaces of the most refined baroque and the fantastic stone formations of El Torcal. Later, Archidona, guaranteeing the passage to the province of Granada.
Embedded in the mountains is Loja, flanked by the highlands of Moraleda de Zafayona and Alhama de Granada. On the other side of Loja, the towns of the last Nasrid border run: Montefrío and Íllora.
In the midst of forests and crops, Fuente Vaqueros, Chauchina and Santa Fe follow each other, symbol of the conquests of the Catholic Monarchs and prelude to the finish line of the route, Granada, a romantic myth of Muslim Spain.
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