Baza

Baza is a town in the province of Granada in southern Spain. It has 21,000 inhabitants (2003). It is situated at 844 m above sea level, in the Hoya de Baza, a valley of the Sierra Nevada, not far from the Gallego River. This town gives its name to the Sierra de Baza. The dome-shaped mountain of Jabalcón overlooks the town from the north-west.
Baza is an ideal location central to northern Granada, although Baza itself is a large town with all the amenities required such as Banks, Supermarkets, Schools, Hospital, within minutes you can be quite rural. so you can be in the countryside (campo) but yet close to civilization.
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There are plenty of smaller towns and villages (pueblos) on the outskirts and surrounding area, where you will find the whitewashed  walls, lots of local history, characters and fiestas.
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Baza features several fiestas and cultural events during the year, and the fair in September at the old station yard, is attended by thousands of people every night for a week, people come from all over the area. It is an ongoing tug-of-war with the locals and a relic all in good dirty fun

The Lady of Baza (la Dama de Baza) is a famous example of Iberian sculpture by the Bastetani. It is a limestone female figure with traces of painted detail in a stuccoed surface that was found on July 22, 1971 by Francisco José Presedo Velo, at Baza, in the altiplano, the high tableland in the northeast of the province of Granada. The town of Baza was the site of the Ibero-Roman city of Basti and, in one of its two necropoleis, the Cerro del Santuario, the Lady of Baza was recovered. She is seated in an armchair, and an open space on the side is thought to have contained ashes from a cremation.[1]

The sculpture’s name links it in the popular imagination to its more famous cousin, the Lady of Elche. After conservation, the sculpture, which dates to the fourth century BCE, joined the enigmatic Lady of Elche deposited in the National Archaeological Museum of Spain inMadrid. The chimera Bicha of Balazote and the standing Gran Dama Oferente, also called Dama del Cerro de los Santos are exhibited in the same room of the museum.

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This particular fiesta in the town of Baza is synonymous with artifacts gained from the ruins of the Alcazaba castle used by Arab rulers of the land in the past. The town also hosts the ruins of the ancient quarter belonging to the Jewish residents of the town in yester centuries. The sculpture christened the “Dama of Baza” was first exposed in this town and is an outstanding feature of the ancient Iberian civilization emblematic of the period between the third and fourth centuries in the Before Christ period. Not for everyone as you will be involved even as an observer so do not wear your Sunday Best.

Negratín Reservoir – Situated in Friela, the Embalse  de Negratín was built in 1984, by damming the Guadiana Menor River which is in fact dammed twice.  The Negratín Reservoir being formed by the lower dam. This is Andalucias third largest reservoir as regards capacity .

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 Lake Negratin

Lake Negratin is formed by the Negratin Dam, and when it is full is seventeen kilometers long, or just over ten miles.

Lake Negratin is one of Europe’s largest lakes¸ situated at the foot of Mount Jabalcon, famous for its hot springs baths, which had great prestige in Roman times and in the Arab Andalusian period.  The baths are now incorporated in a bar on the bank of the lake and after a swim or a soak in the warm water you can enjoy a drink or a meal.

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The beach was made on one of the lake’s banks taking advantage of a natural cove, in the part of the lake belonging to the municipality of Freila, and it is a good place for playing all kind of water sports with no need to travel as far as the coast.

On July 2005, the latest beach was opened in Cuevas del Campo, it is a nudist one and the first of this type in Andalucía. Cuevas del Campo is a public nudest beach.  There are two beaches, one at Friela and one at Cuevas del Campo (nudist).  Just making sure you know that one is nudist, please do not confuse the two.

There are also many places that you can access the lakeside, many with convenient parking.

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The Sierra Nevada Park and Mountain Range

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The park is shared by the provinces of Almeria and Granada. The Park covers a substantial area of 86,208 hectares

which includes a total of forty four urban metropolises.  A must to see any time of the year, whether you drive, walk, cycle, ride, paint, photograph or simply admire the breath taking views, remember to…..

…….. leave only footprints and take only photographs.

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The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation, UNESCO, declared the facility a National Hunting Reserve as well as a Biosphere Reserve in the year 1966.  This is owed to the facts that that the park is home to a diverse range of wildlife and close to sixty five species of plant life are indigenous to the region.

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The Sierra Nevada mountain range

To the south of the slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountain range is the Alpujarra province. Visitors can experience the mountain landscape of the mountain ranges through guided tour hikes, horse rides or aboard all terrain mountain bikes as well as four-wheel driven sports utility vehicles. An all-weather track ascends the mountains as the Alpujarrena slope descends to the Capileira peak.

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