Jaen Information

Jaen is known for its dramatic scenery. Olive trees dominate the landscape which is interspersed with stark white-washed houses against a backdrop of deep orange soil.

The province of Jaen is situated in Northern Andalucia with its capital city of the same name. It has a rich history with many great monuments and a Moorish castle.

Jaen is famous as the world's leading producer of olives and olive oil. It is the venue for the world's largest trade fair devoted to this Mediterranean crop, which takes place in Jaen city during the first week of October.

The landscape of Jaen province is expansive, unspoilt and very beautiful. The small towns boast numerous magnificent Renaissance buildings - luxurious palaces, richly endowed churches and stately public squares. Some of the towns and villages worth visiting here include Baeza, Ubeda and Alcalá.

The main gateway to the province is from Castilla in the north. The road divides and squeezes through the steep rocky mountain path called Desfiladero de Despeñaperros.

Jaen Castle
Jaen Town
Griffin Vulture

The province of Jaen has many wonderful natural parks, which occupy a large portion of the province. Some of which are:

    • Despeñaperros Natural Park - located to the north of the province. It has a natural pathway, which was formed by the river between the Castilian plateau and Andalucia.
    • Sierra Magina Natural Park - situated in the south of the region, which has an area of 19,900 hectares.
    • Sierras de Andajar Natural Park - situated in the heart of the Sierra Morena mountains and has an area of 73,976 hectares. Here you will find cattle ranches dedicated to the breeding of fighting bulls.
    • Sierras de Cazorla - one of the largest protected reserves in Spain and in Europe. It represents almost a fifth of the entire province and is spread amongst 24 municipalities. The nature park possesses 214,000 hectares of land and was declared a Biosphere Reserve in 1983.

    These natural, protected areas of the province are the home for numerous species of animals some of which are in danger of extinction. These include the red deer, mouflon, wild boar, Spanish ibex or mountain goat, royal eagles, griffin vultures, and the bearded vulture or “bone-breaker”. In Despenaperros and the Sierra de Andujar there are also numerous communities of lynxes and wolves. The rivers are crystal clear and inhabited by amphibians, reptiles and invertebrates, as well as numerous otter communities.

    The Sierra Magina has plant species, which are indigenous to this park and flourish amongst its highest peaks.

    There are three major beauty spots in this province - the Upper Guadalquivir , Laguna Grande (the large lagoon) and Cirobarra Waterfall. The Upper Guadalquivir has a series of small reservoirs that are home to a large community of aquatic birds. The Laguna Grande is found in Gaeza and is the best preserved lagoon in the province. The Cimbarra Waterfalls are in Aldeaquermada where the River Guarrizas gushes through a confined chasm creating a very beautiful setting.

    Jaen is known as the capital of the Holy Kingdom due to the Cathedral, which is Renaissance on the inside with a Baroque front. Inside the veil of Veronica and the holy face of Christ are venerated.

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