Dalías (Alpujarra Almeriense)

Dalías is a town in the province of Almería. It consists of two main areas – Dali and Celín. Sitting as it does in the foothills of the Sierra de Gádor, Dalías is often considered part of the Alpujarra Almeriense. Certainly its northern boundaries are extremely picturesque – the mountains loom over the town and the Celín area is extremely rural and the Celín Recreation Area is a pleasant place for a picnic.

Dalías (Alpujarra Almeriense)

picnic site at Celin

South of the town is a different matter. The Campo de Dalías is, in my view, the ugliest area in the whole of the province of Almería with its ocean of plastic, the ubiquitous invernaderos. 30,000 hectares of agricultural greenhouses have, since the 80’s, sprung up in the south western region of Almería. Maybe they are an improvement on the original Campo de Dalías because author Gerald Brenan wasn’t too enamoured with the area either. In his book ‘South from Granada’ he wrote “…a depressing sight met my eye. For fifteen miles the road ran in a perfectly straight line across a stony desert……it is a delta of stone and rubble pushed eight miles into the sea by the erosion of the Sierra de Gádor…”.

But back to Dalías – it has a number of attractive buildings – none more so than its main church, Iglesia Parroquial de Santa María de Ambrox. It is large – surprisingly so considering the size of the town and is extremely appealing both within and without. It has had a troubled history. It has been destroyed and severely damaged on a number of occasions since it was first erected in the 16th century. It was first occasion was during the Morisco rebellion in the Alpujarras in 1568. An earthquake caused its complete destruction in 1804 and as recently as 1993 a fire caused extensive damage. Today, it is a delightful building and is situated in an attractive plaza close to the town hall.

Iglesia Parroquial de Santa María de Ambrox

Iglesia Parroquial de Santa María de Ambrox

casino

casino

A short walk away, is the Casino de Dalías which was built in the early twentieth century but which resembles a nineteenth-century style town house. It has an ornate façade and is the hub of the social and cultural life of the town with dances and concerts.

One of the great assets of towns located in the Sierra de Gádor is water. There are many fuentes in the Dalías area and the town council have installed signs to accompany a tourist trail that incorporates twenty of these watering places. The trail is called ‘La Ruta de las Fuentes de Dalías’. It starts at the Fuente de Peregrino and finishes at the Arroyo de Celín, a delightful recreation area for walking and for picnics (if you don’t mind ducks trying to share your food).

Fuente del Doctor Vicente Granados

Fuente del Doctor Vicente Granados


Of the famous people of Dalías, I will mention two:

Saint José María Rubio y Peralta (picture in Iglesia Parroquial de Santa María de Ambrox)

Saint José María Rubio y Peralta
(picture in Iglesia Parroquial de
Santa María de Ambrox)

José María Rubio (1864-1929) was the first and only saint born in the province of Almería.

Juan Callejón Villegas, a 19th century diplomat, the great great grandfather of actress Helena Bonham Carter.

Robert Bovington

Roquetas de Mar June 2013

Ayuntamiento de Dalías

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About Robert Bovington

Robert Bovington is an English writer of travel books. These include “Spanish Matters” and “Spanish Impressions” Robert Bovington was born in Brighton, East Sussex, the son of Leonard and Audrey Bovington. He is the first-born and has eight siblings – six brothers and two sisters. Having worked for many years in both the telecommunications industry and the teaching profession, Robert wanted to take on new challenges. He and Diane decided to relocate to Spain and, in 2003, the couple moved to Roquetas de Mar in sunny Andalucía. However, lazing on the beach was not Robert's idea of fun - he wanted to explore his new homeland. It didn't stop there! He was so impressed with Spain, its countryside, its historic cities and its culture that it inspired him to write about his experiences. Robert Bovington has been married to Diane for over thirty years. They have no children. However, Robert’s short marriage to Helene resulted in twin daughters Carole and Sheila. The author is also a grandfather and great grandfather. Robert met Diane when both belonged to the Crescent Operatic Society. Music is one of the author’s great passions. At primary school he sang in a choir in a concert of Bach and Handel. Another of his interests is football and for many years he supported Brighton & Hove Albion home and away. His favourite premiership team is Arsenal. Other interests include information technology, writing and ten-pin bowling.
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