Ferreira, Sierra Nevada Natural Park, El Marquesado
Ferreira can be found on the northern slopes of the Sierra Nevada, nestled in the beautiful valley of Marquesado, a stopping point for travelers and pilgrims since ancient times, which today gives access to the Port of Ragua.
In the heart of Sierra Nevada Natural Park, Ferreira offers many opportunities for outdoor activities, from hiking and horseback riding to mountain biking and skiing in the Port of Ragua, and even the gathering of mushrooms and chanterelles (a type of sometimes poisonous mushroom) for the more experienced travelers.
The origins of the town are in prehistoric times, specifically the Argaric era. At the foot of ‘Cerro Juan Canal’ there is an Agaric necropolis, dating from about 1500 BC, in which are tombs ‘en cista’, made of slate. The main reason for the settlement here lies in the exploitation of mineral deposits, together with the location along the traditional ‘ruta de la Ragua’ connecting the valley to the Alpujarras and Guadix, much frequented in the Middle Ages. The settlement is attested as having been in the Lower Empire, in the Mozarabic period, and iron ore mining was carried out during this period.
In 1489, like the areas of Sened and Guadix, after the capitulation of Zagal, Ferreira was taken by the crown of Castile, although the town castle had never been used for defensive purposes. It is part of the estate which the Catholic Monarchs had awarded to the Grand Cardinal of Spain, later forming part of Marquesado. The town had joined the uprising and rebellion of the Moors from 1568-70, and was among the areas most affected by the war, after which the Moors, having been defeated, were expelled, leaving the region severely depopulated, later to be repopulated by settlers from other areas of Spain.
Virgen de la Cabeza Hermitage
Iglesia Parroquial de la Anunciacion (Parish Church of the Annunciation)
Alcazaba de Ferreira
The region produces excellent cheeses and sweet almonds, among these are the ever popular ‘soplillos’, a local delicacy. Typical local recipes include Choto with Mushrooms, and many dishes made of meat from small game. Ferreira also produces many excellent embutidos, and hams, longanizas (locally produced sausages) and other pork products.
Directions from Ferreira
Leave Granada. Take A92 Guadix – Almeria – Murcia. Take the exit towards: Exit 288 – Purullena – Cortes and Graena – Beas de Guadix – Troglodyte City – Ceramic Art centre. Pass Purullena and Guadix. Take A-4101. Pass Esfiliana. Continue along: A-4102. Turn right: A-92 heading to Almeria. Take the exit towards: Exit 312, A-337, La Calahorra – Puerto de la Ragua – Cherín – GR-820 – Charches.On the roundabout, take exit 3 Continue along: A-337 direction: Calahorra – Puerto de la Fragua – Cherín. Pass La Calahorra and continue to Ferreira.
Distances from Ferreira
Granada 72 km
Cherín 38 km
Fiñana 20 km
Ugijar 44 km
Laujar de Andarax 45 km
Alcudia de Guadix 14 km
Anunciación Parish Church
Virgen de la Cabeza Chapel
Ferreira Arab Baths
The baths of Ferreira are situated at the entrance of the villaje, next to the main irrigation cannel, and important remains of the building, which was built on an east-west axis, have survived. These comprise three rectangular naves the easternmost measuring 5 m by 1.56 m, and the other two 5 by 2.30 m. All the naves have barrel vaulted ceilings with three rectangular skylights. The building has stone walls with schist slabs bound with a mortar of lime and sand.
To the north of the three naves set transversally to them, there must have been another nave which servers an entrance vestibule and dressing room (al-bayt al-masla). From its worthern wall there would have been an access into the first of the naves which have been preserved, the cold room (al-bayt al-barid). The middle nave would have been the warn room (al-bayt al-wastani) and the last one the hot room (al-bayt al-sajun). The segmental arch of the western room must have been covered over by a thin partition wall which let the heat coming from the furnace into the room. Adjoining the room were the furnace, followed by a place for storing wood and a service area.
Although the exact date of its construction is not known, it is certain that it was not before the 12th century. According to a document dating from 1511 the baths were definitely in use at the beginning of the 16th century. There is no documented evidence of any subsequent renovation or restoration work and the buildings fell into disure after 1566, as was the case with the other baths in the Zenete area, when the Moriscos were banned from using them.
Virgen de la Cabeza Fountain
Constitución Square Fountain
Calle Eras Fountain