The Axarquia is a 'comarcal' or district of Andalucía in southern Spain. It is part of Málaga province, located to the east of Málaga city - much less developed than the west - and bordered by the beaches of the Costa del Sol to the south and sheltered by mountain ranges to the north.
Until fairly recently this was a relatively unknown part of Andalucía and it has escaped the over development on the coast that has has spoilt the western coast. Inland, the Axarquia still retains its rustic charm and it's not uncommon to still see donkeys and mules used for transport and carrying goods.
The landscape is rugged, with deep valleys and terraced hillsides studded with olive and almond trees. The area is dotted with the famous 'white villages' which originate from Arab times when southern Spain was occupied by the moors.
I have lived here with my husband for the past ten years and have grown to love the area. In this hub I'd like to share some of the images that I have taken over the past few years. Later, in further hubs, I'll write in more depth about the area - but, for now, I hope you enjoy my photos.
Some of the beautiful scenery of the Axarquia
Lake Vinuela is a beautiful man-made reservoir 16km inland. It is overlooked by the imposing Mount Maroma - at 2,066 metres above sea level - is Andalucía's highest mountain.
Here, in a photo that I took in mid November there is already a dusting of snow on the mountain's summit.
The view of the lake looking south towards the coast.
A typical scene of a goat herder out with his herd.
A hidden corner in spring - poppy fields near the white village of Alfarnate
Fiestas and traditions
At the village fiestas a giant sized paella is often prepared and served free to the revellers.
Two young party-goers at a fiesta in the white village of Alfarnate.
The fiesta in the hamlet of Guaro is in honour of Our Lady of Fatima.
The fiesta of San Isidro in Periana attracts hundreds of people.
Young and old enjoying the foam fiesta in Periana's Feria D'Agosto.
An open air painting competition is held every year in the white village of Periana - there is always a high standard.
In the autumn you can find stalls selling roasted chestnuts in the streets - this one in is Vélez-Málaga.
Places to visit
One of the lovely beaches at the town of Nerja
On the Balcon de Europa at Nerja - the statue of King Alfonso X11 - with a street performer!
A street scene in Frigiliana - a very pretty white village in the hills behind Nerja.
The ethnographic museum in Riogordo is worth a visit - it also has occasional art exhibitions.
A room in the Riogordo ethnographic museum - my neighbour's house is remarkably similar to this!
Old mill stones in the museum - these would have been turned by mules or donkeys.