Located in the most northerly end of the province of Cadiz, Olvera is a crossroads of roads among Cadiz, Seville and Malaga. It has an idyllic landscape of reddish lands dotted with scrubs, olives and cereal. It was declared a Historic-Artistic Ensemble in 1983. Joaquín Romero Murube already said about Olvera: “Olvera is a Street, a church and a castle but … what street, what church and what castle!” The population has an unmistakable stamp of whitewashed houses and steep streets, which lead to two masterpieces, which the town takes pride on, the parish church of Our Lady of the Incarnation and the Arab castle.
Olvera cuisine offers an exquisite variety of traditional dishes and desserts that make its gastronomy delicious for any palate. Unique flavours, which make eating a real pleasure. Dishes such as peas soup, tomato soup, tagarninas stew, stuffed sirloin, meat dishes, boiled ‘potajes’, slaw make the ‘Olveraña’ cuisine one of its most recognized attractions throughout the Sierra. Local desserts such as Monday’s cake, ‘hornazo’, omelettes and carnival cookies add a special flavour to the pastries.
Taking as essential base its precious olive oil traditional dishes, which continue having the flavour of yesteryear, are made. Its careful preparation and the raw materials with which they are made make these dishes a real delight for the traveller who wants to delight in gastronomy.
What to visit
The origins of the present population of Olvera seem to be placed around the Arab castle in the Nasrid period. Raised in the 12th century, following a triangular layout, the fortress rises above the rock, preserving walls, turrets and the tower of homage. Off the same and, following the levels of the slope, the town is projected giving rise to a square and to a whole series of streets, curves and parallel, of irregular configuration; A historic hamlet that alternates the manor house, with noble front, with the best examples of popular architecture.
La Cilla Cultural Center and Museum ‘La Frontera y los Castillos’
Known as Casa de La Cilla – a building built during the Señorío de la Casa de Osuna – without an exact date, its original destiny was the collection of grains, fruit and products of the harvests of the municipal term, belonging to the Duchy. The building underwent reforms and adaptations with the time and in the middle of the last century, the successors of the house of Osuna ceded their use to the City Council, which used it as municipal jail. Its penultimate adaptation, already in private hands, is its transformation into tank and winery. Nowadays and after its restoration, it becomes Cultural Center, housing the Museum ‘La Frontera and Los Castillos’, the Municipal Tourism Office, an archaeological exhibition, the Interpretation Center of the Via Verde de la Sierra and a room for traveling exhibitions.
Pza. de la Iglesia. Edif. de La Cilla. 11690 Olvera (Cádiz)
WINTER: 10:30/14:00h & 16:00/18:00h. SUMMER: 10:30/14:00h & 16:00/20:00h.
MON: closed (except on holidays mondays and on the eve of festivals).
2€, joint entry for the Museum and Castle. Free entrance for visitors registered in the municipality.
- Route of the White Villages. The white of the lime goes linking a town to another in the Route that, to the north of the province, crosses the Sierra de Cádiz, an abrupt, glaring, green and exciting route: Route of the White Villages. Here you can still hear surviving stories of what ‘Al-Andalus’ daily life was like: the urban layout of its streets, the economy linked to the cultivation of oil, the artisan production of leather items and the sweet Andalusian recipe book. A presence highlighted even in the name of most of the 19 villages that make up the Route.
- Monumental Route. In the village you can go up the most outstanding monuments of the village along steep streets, corners, ‘albarradillas’ … towards the unmistakable silhouette of the historical-artistic complex: the castle and the Church of Our Lady of the Incarnation .
- Route Olvera-Laundry of Pine-Sanctuary of the Remedies. From the Calle Vereda de Pino to the Sanctuary of the Remedios, the visitor will pass through the Pino Laundry, a place with a lot of tradition between the years 1685 and 1750, although its use lasted until the middle of the 20th century. The Pino Laundry is accessed through a patio, where two steps are located between three low walls after which we find four pillars that support a water cover. On the left is the area where the water leaked in and on the right is the drain, going along the pool where people used to wash. Then you have to go on until the Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Remedies, from which we will see a sea of olive trees and the beauty of the town as a whole. Definitely, one of the photos that should not be missed. Inside the Patron of the Olvereños, the Virgin of the Remedies, presides over the sanctuary in a chapel worthy of contemplation.