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A Fascinating Holiday in the Old Moorish Town of

Įlora

Only £290 to £390 per week all year

Carratraca

People have been taking the water in Carratraca since Roman times, though the famous spa building was only built in 1847 (despite its classical pretences). Only 10 km from Įlora - and the drive itself, go via El Chorro and the Lakes and return through the Sierra de Aquas, is worth the trip anyway - you will find a village of Arabic origin charmingly extended in the nineteenth century.

It is still possible to take the water, though quite expensively at about 120 euros per day. For this you get to bath in waters which are, I quote "Radioactive, Sulphurized, Arsenical" which is claimed to cure an impressive list of ailments. Your choice should you wish, one reputably also taken by Lord Byron and Empress Marie Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III.

Definitely worth the trip if you are here at the right time is the Easter passion play on Good Friday and Easter Sunday, performed in the bullring (still active, see bullfights) by over 100 villagers. And whilst in town have a look at the Town Hall, which is more a very well presented local museum and the slightly dilapidated, romantic old hotel, Hostal del Principe, converted from an inn which King Fernando VII of Spain ordered to be built for himself and his retinue in 1830. 

The baths are only open from June 15th - October 15th.