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The Village of Ojen, Andalucia, Spain
A Brief Guide to Andalucia, Spain
Andalucia in the South of Spain is often simply thought of for the historic city of Malaga or for its coastal area, known as the Costa del Sol. Very few people who visit the Costa del Sol and its resorts such as Benalmadena, Torremolinos and Fuengirola take the time to explore the other parts of Andalucia and see what else it has to offer.
It is true that a lot of Andalucia is given over to scrubland and is pretty unattractive but there are equally beautiful parts which the visitor is likely to enjoy. Ojen is but one of the many beautiful, whitewashed villages which are dotted around the Andalucian countryside. These villages are so whitewashed for three principal reasons. The chalk substance originally used to whitewash the buildings is plentiful in the area, the whitewash helps to reflect the heat of the sun and keep the buildings cool inside during the fiery summer heat and often legislation now requires that they be whitewashed to keep the general, uniform appearance of the village.
A Typical Andalucian Whitewashed Village
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The Main Street through Ojen
The Curious Traveller in Ojen
Our visit to Ojen was as part of a day trip touring the villages of Andalucia, so unfortunately we only had a couple of hours in the village itself. When we arrived - at lunchtime - we were recommended a restaurant on the main street through the village by the tour guide, on the basis that there was nowhere else really to go. This was patently untrue and we later saw a great many small street cafes which we would much rather have given our patronage. The food on offer where we ate was extremely limited, minuscule in terms of portions (a hungry sparrow would have remained so!) and not even particularly good. We now believe that the owners must either have been friends of the guide or have had some form of business deal with the company running the tour.
When we did take our walk through Ojen, however - the name of which is apparently derived from the Arabic word "hoxan," meaning "rough!" - we found it to be a beautiful and tranquil little village, worthy of far greater exploration than we regrettably had time for on this occasion.
A Visual Stroll through Ojen
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