El Ejido – Almería
El Ejido is a town located in the Southwest of the province, in the sedimentary basin between the south of La Sierra de Gádor and the sea, nowadays it is turned into a huge plastic sea, due to the growing of greenhouse that are the base of the economic splendour of the town.
In the middle of the sea, however, there is an area with a huge ecological interest, the Nature Reserve of Punta Entinas-Sabinar, a complex with dunes, beaches and lakes. Next to this space you can observe Almerimar, a high-level tourist resort that has marina, hotel installations, beaches and a golf course: a sign that this town has other possibilities apart from the agriculture.
The territory due to its geographical situation is an absolute sunny spot, being part of the control of the Mediterranean climates. The farmer from El Ejido has been shown like a crucial human factor of the climate with the introduction of the greenhouse, in whose base of development underlies the idea of expanding the advantages that the climate of the area offers: 3.060 hours of sunshine a year and an average temperature of 18’5º.
These hot and mild temperatures and the abundant hours of sunshine, makes that the beaches in El Ejido have the basic element for the touristic development, a fact that together with the availability of drinking water and with a good infrastructure, have favoured the appearance of the huge tourist resort of Almerimar and the ones of Guardias Viejas and Balerma, that have known original and traditional forms of tourism from many years ago.
Together with the fishing, the salt works exploitation has been a traditional activity of the ejidense coastal from the pre-Roman age.
From the conquest of the Muslim kingdom of Granada over the coast, then burst in the incursions of the corsairs. The defensive cordon of the coast in El Ejido, against the Moorish and Berber piracy from the XVI, XVII and XVIII centuries, is made up of the castle and later tower of Balerma, the tower and subsequent castle of Guardias Viejas, and the towers of Entinas and Cerrillos. Nowadays the castle and the tower represent interesting historical monuments that correspond to certain political, military and architectural conceptions.
Traditionally the inhabitants from El Ejido keep an age-old struggle against the drought, creating a particular group of forms in order to use water, from which the Roman Murgi is a great consumer. Together with the farming exploitation we have to mention the human and cattle raising supply through a network of wells, some of them Muslims, and other of new construction by the Christian society. These wells (Toril, Terreras, Pampanico, Blanco, Balsa Matilla) can be considered like real monuments to the human ingenuity in order to supply water in an arid area.
The quantitative and qualitative jump is carried out from 1953, when technical studies confirm the exceptional resources of underground water and wells are opened with more advanced technology that the one used traditionally, precisely this abundance makes that El Ejido does not have the complex problems of other Mediterranean areas.
At the end of 1987 the municipality had 38.646 inhabitants, while in 1887 it had 2.247, in a century it has a growth of 1.620%. From 1900 to 1950 the population treble, from 2.300 inhabitants to 7.160. In the thirty seven years from 1950 to 1987, starts a real population explosion with a growth of 440%.
Contrary to what is confirmed frequently, to reach the present situation El Ejido has had a long development through the time: recent Neolithic (3.000 years B.C.), argáricos settlements (there were found burials with an interesting trappings), Roman age in La Murgi, that had its own coin, it is a prosperous municipality like is highlighted several testimonies and archaeological remains (Porcia Maura’s tomb, mosaics, inscriptions, etc..). From the IV Century the intensification of the rural life entails a dispersal of the town, until then concentrated, however in this age, it was erected El Daimunz, Early Christian construction that could be a mausoleum, according to other authors it is from the III century, from late Roman age.
For the Islamic period the state of the question confirms that, with permanent or provisional town, the region of El Ejido, that until the IV Century had a predominant and indigenous role, from the establishment of the Muslims it presents a clear dependence of the community settled in the valley of Dalias, starting a peripheral that will extend until the last third of the XIX century in the economic aspect, while the administrative aspect will extend until the eighties in the XX century, because it was September 11, 1982 when came the legal-administrative creation in El Ejido, with the segregation of Dalias and Celín, making up a new municipality with the name of the old one (Dalias), and the old municipality with the name of the new one (El Ejido).
The organization of the local area is based on a group of diversified, complex and complementary networks, being its stronger knots the different population centres of the municipality: Santa María del Águila, Las Norias, Balerma, Matagorda, Los Baños de Guardias Viejas, San Agustín, Pampanico and El Ejido, around which it has been made up all kind of connections.
El Ejido like an urban area, is the important area that organizes the local space: canalizing and service function, to its influence area, of goods and services and of meeting and exchange among all the economic agents.
In El Ejido we are faced with a farming techno productive system, inserted in the new ways of Mediterranean agriculture that advocates a selective growth of several agricultural products, mainly vegetables that in the local space have an area of 10.500 hectares in greenhouse.
The high garden production and the demographic development have created a secondary sector focused on the industrial area of La Redonda, and a very important and dynamic tertiary sector: transport, communications, trading, financial, administrative, health, professional and recreational activities.
El Ejido Monuments
Parish Church of San Isidro, XX century.
El Ejido Archaeological Sites
In El Ejido you can visit many Roman remains.
Ciavieja, from 1800 to 1500 B. C.
In Roman site there was found thermal baths, a circus, graves with rich outfits of jewellery, mosaics, etc.
A dependent town of El Ejido where you can observe some old saltmines that nowadays a huge quantity of water birds nest there. It had some springs, nowadays abandoned, and it preserves the castle of La Compañía de Guardias Viejas de Castilla that were settled here after the Christian conquest. The castle was blown up by the English in the XVII century and rebuilt in the XIX century.
El Ejido Gastronomy
Migas (fried breadcrumbs). Rice with snails. Broad beans from La Vega. Tomato and grilled peppers salad. Peas omelette. Garlic calf. Dishes from La Alpujarra.
Sweets: Borrachillos. Papajotes. Leche frita (dessert made from milk and flour fried in egg). Roscos.
How to get there
You have to exit Almería and take N-340A. Alleyway of Aguadulce. In the roundabout, take the salida 3 and continue in E-15 / A-7 towards N-340 – Motril – Málaga. Take the exit towards: Salida 414 – Polígono Industrial – Santa María del Águila. Then take N-340A, alleyway of Santa María del Águila and then you get El Ejido.
Distances from El Ejido
Vícar 18 km
Dalías 9 km
Félix 27 km
Almería 34 km
Aguadulce 23 km
Roquetas de Mar 20 km