Paterna del Río
Paterna del Río
Paterna del Río is a town from Almería located in the southern foothills of Sierra Nevada, particularly in the easternmost third of the Nevadan mountain range in full Alpujarra, and to 1,193 metres of altitude above sea level, to the south of the Morrón del Chullo Peppers (2,609 metres), among the Barranco de Paterna and the slope of Gaviarra, where until not long ago there were important iron mines.
Its municipal areas borders on Granada to the north, in particular with Huéneja; on Laujar de Andarax to the East; on Alcolea to the South, and on Bayárcal to the West, all of them places from Almería. It belongs to the region of La Alpujarra, a peculiar area with strong historical roots that, together with its mountainous shape (located within the Puerto de la Ragua), make this place a strong rubbing space. It has an area of 44 Km2 and a population of approximately 400 inhabitants and in it, besides the population of its name, is part of the farmhouse of Guarros.
Paterna del Río is divided into four marked quarters, the result of Muslim settlement: La Placeta, Barrio Alto, Fuente del Castaño and Barrio de los Castillos.
This town is located in the southern foothills of Sierra Nevada, result of the thaw there are formed a series of gullies that will feed downstream the river Paterna. Very near the village we can observe the old Moorish towns of Iniza and Guarros, nowadays reduced to farmhouses. Guarro gave name to its baths of medicinal mineral, gaseous, sulphur and iron waters, that talk about its spa importance dating back to the Middle Ages.
Although the origin of Paterna is not well known, the term Paterno is Latino, in the mines of La Gaviarra there were found Iberian swords. The mark which gives the period of Al-Andalus is inescapable. The village was composed of four large districts, defended by a castle and a common organization, with a high mosque and two minor ones. Nowadays it is also divided into four quarters: La Placeta, Barrio Alto, Barrio de Enmedio, Fuente del Castaño and Barrio de los Castillos. The Alquería de Huerros, nowadays Guarros, was added to the municipality in the XVI century.
During the War of the Alpujarras (1568-1570), Marquis de Mondéjar defeated 4,000 Moorish in Guarros in 1569, Aben Humeya, leader of the rebellion, fled to Paterna and then feeling cornered by royal troops fled to the mountains, in the place he left his wife, mother and sisters who were taken away. With the defeat and expulsion of the Moors from the Kingdom of Granada in 1570, Paterson was repopulated by Old Christians from Galicia, in a total of 100 people.
Nowadays its population is engaged mainly in agriculture with the cultivation of vegetables, potatoes and apples. A place where you can enjoy the delicious waters of its springs like the Fuente Agria with ferruginous waters, or hundred-year-old chestnuts and oak forests.
Paterna del Río Monuments
Parish Church of San Juan Evangelista, from the XVIII century. Mudejar style. It has been declared a Historic Artistic Site. Inside is one of the best baroque altarpieces throughout the province.
Chapel of La Virgen de los Remedios.
Paterna del Río Archaeological Sites
Baths of Santiago, in Guarros.
Aldea de Iniza.
Aldea de Guarros. There is a pool of thermal hot springs, where come throughout the year large numbers of people.
Plaza de la Iglesia.
Viewpoint and singular trees.
Paterna del Río Gastronomy
The gastronomy represents the culture of a town. It is influenced by climate, economy, natural resources of the place, the seasons and religious festivals and Paterna del Río is no exception.
In the cold winter days, when the rain makes its appearance, it is customary to cook semolina or bread crumbs. The latter are a good resource to use all that stale bread that day by day accumulate and we do not know what to do with it. The crumbs are eaten with paprika soup, fried and dried peppers and tomatoes, fish, chops, grilled onions and garlic, sausage and fried black pudding, all with a good local wine. It usually is eaten without a main course for obvious reasons. We also consumed the stews, cooked in different ways: wheat, squash and fennel, which once were made to prepare the body for a hard day’s work. On hot summer days the gazpachos and seasonal salads are refreshing. We also can taste the characteristic fritadas of rabbit or chicken porridge with fish stock, using the most splendid season vegetables.
Throughout the year you can taste the cold meats like sausage, chorizo, spicy pork sausage, butifarra (Catalan sausage) …. and pork products that are made before Christmas, in the famous slaughtering that often gather around the ritual, family and friends to spend a few days of partying and hard work in a very important tradition.
At Christmas it is made the typical confectionery of these dates, tortas de chicharrones, pan de aceite, suspiros and mantecados (Christmas suit made from flour, almonds and lard). With the arrival of spring and coinciding with Easter, dressings adapt to the ban on meat and plant products that emerge in the valley. It is prepared the meatballs Lenten dishes of cod and dessert donuts and fried fritters served with anise. We can not forget the famous hornazos of San Marcos, loaf of bread with oil and garnished with egg, according to tradition must be broken in the head more confused.
How to get there
You have to exit Almería towards Huércal de Almería, cross it and continue on highway 340. Follow towards: Almería – E-15 – N-340 – Nijar – Murcia. At the roundabout, take the salida 1 and continue: A-92A towards: A-92 – Benahadux – Guadix. Continue along: A-92A, follow signs to Benahadux. Then exit Benahadux towards Alhama de Almería, leave this and turn left: A-348. Pass near Illar and make the journey Canjáyar. Follow signs to Fondón. Once past Fondón follow signs to Láujar de Andarax. Continue to: ALP-612 until you get Paterna del Río.
Distances from Paterna del Río
Cádiar 42 km
Ugijar 30 km
Ohanes 32 km
Laroles 27 km
Almería 73 km
Trevélez 64 km
Abrucena 55 km
Mecina Alfahar 36 km
Puerto de la Ragua 21 km