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Alcala del Jucar Travel Guide

Alcala del Jucar (Spain)
Coat of Arms of Alcala del Jucar (Spain)

Alcala del Jucar
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Coordinates: 39.192896°, -1.42917°

Population: 1,129 inhabitants (2023)

Distance to Madrid: 288 km

Alcala del Jucar is a municipality located in the province of Albacete. It was originally a village that came to be considered a “villazgo” as a result of the signing of a document that established it as such by the King of Castile, Peter I the Cruel. He carried out the appropriate segregation of La Jorquera, the recognition of its rights as a council organization.

It is a town of great beauty and an interesting historical past. In fact, its name arises singularly from its location, on the Júcar gorge. It finally became a town in the 14th century, as the municipality previously belonged to the Kingdom of Murcia.

Each building is characterized by being one on top of the other and on a slope, dug into the mountain at the foot of the Júcar River. It also has beautiful steep and cobbled streets, which gives the town a certain medieval touch, offering both Christian and Muslim influences.
Alcala del Jucar (Spain)
The economy is based mainly on cultivation and livestock; However, in recent years, the growth of tourism has been significant, as many people are encouraged to visit Alcala del Jucar for its unique appearance and various architectural and cultural monuments.

Among the main festivities is Holy Week, when exhibitions of craft creations are held and collections are exhibited. In addition, recreational activities such as juggling acts and troubadours are carried out. Their main objective is to commemorate the historical past of the place.
In fact, Alcala del Jucar was declared a Historic-Artistic Site in 1982. Its architecture and culture also reflect the Roman influence that the municipality had in the past. For a time, it belonged to the episcopal demarcation of the diocese from Cartagena.

In recent years, efforts have been made to promote tourism in the area. Therefore, throughout the municipality, and above all in central areas, one can find shops, restaurants and entertainment venues.

Top 5 places to visit in Alcala del Jucar

Visiting Alcala del Jucar will allow the tourist not only to learn first-hand about the traditions and culture of the municipality but also to see every corner of it and thereby enjoy the architecture, the natural views and the good food. Our top five places to visit are:

Castle of Alcala del Jucar

Castle of Alcala del Jucar (Spain)
This is located on the gorge of the Júcar River, on a rock, which positions it at the top of the municipality. It is a fortress-type building, as previously it offered protection and shelter for the inhabitants of the town. It dates from the 12th and 13th centuries.

Its structure, in terms of style, presents a significant Arab, Christian and Roman influence, though the Islamic one predominates. It has a pentagonal-shaped tower and two towers whose bases are circular in shape.
Various reforms and restorations have been made to the castle in general, but inside, it preserves the wall that it had from the beginning.

The term “Alcalá” means "castle". Therefore, the municipality would be called "Castle on the Júcar River". It was declared a Historic-Artistic Site on April 22, 1949.

Roman bridge

Roman bridge (Alcala del Jucar - Spain)
It is believed that the bridge was used in the past as a customs office for the border with Aragon. In fact, there are records of its existence since the 14th century.

The old bridge that existed in Alcala del Jucar was of Roman style and foundation.

However, the current bridge in the municipality is the result of new construction processes, reforms and improvements, as in the past it suffered a lot from floods.
Its current structure is solid and based on ashlars. It has four eyes, and the waters of the Júcar River pass below. Previously, in the middle of the bridge was the figure of a cross, made of stone. This was demolished during the warfare of the Spanish Civil War.

The Roman bridge of Alcala del Jucar continues to be the most impressive and most visited bridge in the municipality.

Water route

Alcala del Jucar (Spain)
This route is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Alcala del Jucar. The trail goes around the entire municipality and is at the foot of the Júcar River.

On the water route, one has direct access to the natural beauty that characterizes the municipality.

Also, one can carry out recreational activities, as the space is conditioned for this purpose, with rest areas and benches to sit on throughout the route.
Many other routes also offer opportunities for hiking and similar sports activities, as well as for enjoying beautiful and unique landscapes. These include the Batán trail, which is known for combining both possibilities.

St. Andrew's Church

St. Andrew's Church(Alcala del Jucar - Spain)
The construction of this church was carried out during the 15th and 18th centuries. It is a Catholic temple whose genesis was during the conquest of the territory by the Christians.

This place was built based on ashlars and is made up of two semicircular arches, each in its respective door, providing entrance to the building. Its floor plan is made up of two segments, and it has two neoclassical vaults. Inside, one can see various works of a religious nature. It basically combines the Gothic style and the Neoclassical style.
Several reforms and restorations have been carried out. The most important were those carried out during 2003 and 2009. However, much of the initial style of the structure has been preserved. After all these restorations, the entrance to St. Andrew's Church has been open to the public since 2010.


Bullring (Alcala del Jucar - Spain)
The Alcala del Jucar bullring is one of the most curious and oldest in Spain.

What makes this bullring unique is its irregular shape, which resembles that of a Roman stadium. Its construction date is unknown, but it is estimated that the bullring dates back to the early 20th century. Other studies suggest that it dates from 100 years earlier.

In recent years, it has undergone various renovations to make it more practical.

Gastronomy in Alcala del Jucar

As livestock and agriculture are the two main economic activities that provide the municipality with the income to sustain itself, it is not surprising that the gastronomy of the place is characterized by the use of the products and crops typical of the area. In fact, Alcala del Jucar is popular for its production of select wines and oils.

One of the most famous dishes is the Manchego gazpacho. It is a preparation consisting of a locally produced meat stew, various spices and rye cakes that result in a divine broth. There are also the “atascaburras”, which are a preparation achieved with a mixture of potatoes, fish (preferably cod) and oil.

The “moje” also stands out. This is a preparation whose main ingredients are tomato and tuna. The first can be prepared in a bain-marie, or fried with garlic. Then the tuna and egg are placed.

Other interesting information about Alcala del Jucar

Between incredible views, myths, festivities and routes of great tourist attraction, Alcala del Jucar is a town with a lot to offer.

As a fact of interest we find the myth that surrounds the Castle of Alcala del Jucar. According to this myth, the princess who lived in the fort, seeing that her desires for love were not possible, as she loved a gentleman who had religious beliefs different from her own, decided to commit suicide by throwing herself off the cliff.

Another version of the myth surrounding the castle is that both lovers, seeing that they could not fight the power held by the princess's father, preferred to flee and live in a nearby village.

In the municipality of Alcala del Jucar, the market fairs are very famous. They offer many products that, above all, help with the touristic development of the municipality. In these fairs, craft courses are held and artistic pieces created by the inhabitants are sold. These include pieces of jewellery, paintings and many other things that represent the culture of the place.

If you want to find beautiful views, medieval streets and a castle that gives life to more than one myth, Alcala del Jucar should be your destination.