THE DESTINATION FOR EVERYBODY. THIS IS HOW ALBARRACÍN DEFINES ITSELF. A PERFECT PLACE FOR ANY TYPE OF TOURIST, REGARDLESS OF AGE, PHYSICAL SHAPE OR OF WHETHER THEY ARE LOOKING FOR AN EXCITING CLIMBING ROUTE OR A QUIET HIKING TRAIL.
The trip can start in the current town of Albarracín, one of Spain´s most beautiful villages. From its 1,182 metres of altitude, the visitor enters a journey in time that begins with the ascent to its walls and continues through the old town, declared a Historic-Artistic Site. It is advisable to wear comfortable shoes to visit this town, which is anchored in time and where one can choose between a guided tour and discovering the intricate corners it offers on one’s own.
We choose to start from its walls of Christian construction. The history of this town is almost as old as that of the Peninsula. Converted into an important military axis during the Arab invasion, the Torreón del Andador and the Torre del Agua towers date from the 10th century. Also worth visiting is the Alcazar (fortress) of Andalusian origin, which later passed into the hands of the Lords of Albarracín.
Tradition is alive in the streets of the town where its peculiar popular architecture transports the traveller. Modest houses of reddish plaster, which imbue the whole with a unique tone and among which the Casa de la Julianeta, the Casa del Chorro and the Casa de la Calle Azagra stand out for their conservation, colour and inclination. Small palaces are to be found among the modest buildings.
The Episcopal, the Monterde y Antillón, the Dolz del Espejo, the Navarro de Arzuriaga and the Casa de la Comunidad palaces deserve spe-cial mention. The visit can end at the Cathedral and it is almost essential to pay a visit to the el Museo del Juguete (Toy Museum).
THE SIERRA DE ALBARRACÍN MOUNTAINS
No one arriving in Albarracín can but visit the mountain range that gives shelter to the source of the Tajo and Júcar rivers, forming one of Spain´s most extensive hydrological networks. The place is unique in itself for the amount of characteristics of its own and for its incredible natural, quiet and contamination-free spaces, which make it an ideal destination for astrotourism. The southeast of the mountain range hides one of the most striking landscape and cultural ensembles: the Rodeno de Albarracín. This unique place, formed by pine groves on red sandstones was occupied by prehistoric man and several important samples of Levantine rock art are still extant.
Another of the most outstanding geological features of the Sierra de Albarracín are the rocky massifs called “muelas”, which protrude with their vertical walls and flattened pro-files in the upper area. The most abrupt places are found in the Jabaloyas and Tremedal mountain ranges, where the impressive Muela de San Juan is located. Beauty splashes every corner in Albarracín, from the wild beauty of the geology of the place to the delicate beauty offered by wild orchids. About 50 different species are documented.
The mycological richness of its forests stands out. It is easy to find different types of mushrooms in spring and autumn, and they are very much present in the local cuisine. Forests, wetlands and lagoons that serve as habitat for the golden eagle, buzzards, imperial herons, marsh harriers, warblers and hawks have turned this enclave into their home and are easily spotted on any trip.
The possibilities are so wide that the offer of visits is generous with preferences and ages. Children can choose between horseback riding, adventure circuits with zip lines, geo-caching, workshops in nature and visiting the Nummus Sea of the Dinópolis Territory. The more adventurous can have a go at climbing or sports tourism while spectacular hiking trails await those preferring quieter activities.
PARADOR DE TERUEL
Located on the outskirts of the historic city, the Parador de Teruel expresses the mixture of cultures and styles that hide some of its most representative buildings. The Parador is a palace in-spired by the Mudejar style, decorated with marbles, tiles, point-ed arches and Arabic details that make up the essence of the open, cheerful rooms, decorated in pastel colours.
The offer includes large gardens, a swimming pool, tennis court and rooms suitable for celebrating conventions, work meetings and social events. The rooms are comfortable and spacious and the restaurant serves succulent local specialties, such as Migas a la Pastora (this dish includes day-old bread soaked in water, garlic, paprika, and olive oil, and contains spinach or alfalfa, often served with pan-fried pork ribs, chorizo and bacon), Caldereta (Lamb Stew), Perolico Soup or Suspiros de Amantes (meringue).