Aguilar de la Frontera
Aguilar de la Frontera – La Campiña Region
Aguilar de La Frontera is a municipality located at the south of the province, in the region of La Campiña. Its land, of soft undulations, is dedicated to agriculture, where the olive grove, the cereal cultivation and some vineyards predominate. In its district we meet the Natural Reserve of Las Laguñas de Zoñar y Rincón, the most important of all those that form the humid Complex of the south of Cordoba. Place of great beauty framed by labor land, numerous aquatic birds live in it, standing out the white-headed duck due to its significance.
When we speak about Aguilar we have to speak of a city, since we are in the presence of one of the most important cities of Cordoba. Located in a small hill, it spreads towards the fields with its white houses, the remains of its castle, its stately houses and its vast history included. Numerous buildings speak of its past and wealth, but the Torre del Reloj (Tower of the Clock), the Iglesia del Hospital (Church of the Hospital) and the splendid octogonal shaped Plaza de S. Jose stand out.
Aguilar de la Frontera is the former Iberian – Roman Ipagrum, involved in Munda’s battle, that brought face to face César´s supporters and those of Pompeyo. Precisely of this period belong its more ancient remains, a necropolis of big dimensions. There are different versions of the etymology of the name. For some, Ipagrum would mean “high field”, whereas others think that the origin is turdetan-greek, coming from the greek name hippos, i.e., horse.
At present there is a place named Llano de los Caballos (Plain of the horses) in Aguilar. The Muslim conquest of the city caused that it was named Bulay or Poley, maybe deriving from the Greek. The defeat, on April 5th of the year 891, of its Christian settlers and of the rebel troops by the troops of the emir Abdallah, originated that the village happens to belong to the cora of Cabra. Some time later, in the 11th century, Poley was integrated in the ziri kingdom of Granada.
The current name of Aguilar was given to it after the Christian conquest. It was King Fernando III el Santo who won it for Castilla in the year 1240. The first Christian governor was a Portuguese coming from a family of Toledo, Gonzalo Yáñez Dovinal or of Ovinal. It is with Alfonso X that the village is renamed as Aguilar, name of the family of the mother of don Gonzalo, thus the monarch compensated him for some services rendered. Finally, the expression “de la frontera” (of the border) is given to it due to its proximity to the border of Granada during the Low Middle Ages.
After the Castilian civil wars, which bring Pedro I and Enrique II face to face, the village happens to belong to Gonzalo Fernandez de Cordoba. The XVIIth and XVIIIth centuries represent a period of decadence and crisis for the village, due to the strong population decrease caused by the epidemics.
Already in the 20th century, the political repression that affected Spain after the victory of Franco’s troops fully involved Aguilar, being many of its citizens affected. Agriculture and ceramics are nowadays the two main economic activities of the population. Located on a hill that goes down to the road, Aguilar has a rich cultural heritage.
Iglesia de Ntra. Sra. del Carmen: 16th century
Monasterio de San José y San Roque: (1668 y 1761), Andalusian baroque.
Sta. María de Soterraño: from the 13th century in Gothic style. .
Plaza de San José: dates from1806, octogonal-shaped
Torre del Reloj: made of brick and decorated with glazed tile, albarran tower
Iglesia del Hospital de Sta. Brígida: Renaissance and baroque elements. .
Ermita de la Candelaria (16th century): with a beautiful coffered ceiling (artesonado)
Iglesias de los Peregrinos del Cristo de la Salud (17th century).
San Blas y Sta. Cruz (16th century)
Imagery of great interest and richness of baroque altarpieces, as well as pieces of goldsmithery.
Poley´s Fortress: remains of the Neolithic and Iberian and Roman ceramics, in ruins, have been found.
Its urban center is a great showcase of stately houses, for instance “La casa de las Cadenas” (The house of the Chains).
Aguilar de la Frontera Gastronomy
Aguilar de la Frontera´s gastronomy is very simple, varied and particularly tasty, accompanied by the renowned wines of the Denominación de Origen de Montilla-Moriles.
Among the different regional dishes the “joecas” (potatoes in sauce) stand out as genuine aguilarense dish. It is also worth mentioning the tomatoes and eggs purée, the artichokes stew, the rabbit in sauce, the partridge in salmorejo or the rice with rooster, linked to the celebrations of the Feria de San Miguel.
As for the desserts, the gachas de mosto (grape juice porridge), the pan de higo (fig bread) or the “arrope” (result of boiling grape juice till it thickens) are peculiar.
But above all, Aguilar has reputation for its exquisite merengás of coffee and strawberry, the turrón (nougat candy), the borrachuelos (cake with rum), the roscos de San Blas (ring-shaped cake) with their traditional “bulilis” or bows of varied colors.
The caliphal reminiscences are found in the “risaos” consisting of almonds, sugar, yolk and lemon shavings.
How to get to Aguilar
Leave Cordoba. Continue in Carretera de Cadiz. Continue in: Avenida de towards: E-5, A-4, Seville – Malaga. At the roundabout take Exit 3. Continue in: E-5 / A-4 towards: Seville – Malaga. Continue towards: exit 408 – Malaga. Continue in: A-45. Take the exit towards: N-331. At the roundabout, take exit 3 towards: N-331 towards: Fernán Núñez – Montemayor. Cross Fernán Núñez. Travesía de Montemayor y de Montilla (alleyway). Get to Aguilar of the Border.
Espejo 24 km
Montilla 9 km
Santaella 23 km
La Carlota 39 km
La Rambla 18 km
Castro del Río 31 km
Nueva Carteya 27 km
Montalbán de Córdoba 16 km
San José & San Roque Convent
Sta. María de Soterraño
Church of the Hospital of Charity
Cristo de la Salud Church
Ntra. Sra. de los Remedios Coronada Sanctuary
Vera Cruz Church
San José Square
Casa Señorial en la C/ Carrera 1