An Enchanting and Dramatically Beautiful Setting
Flamenco School 'La Fuente' is in the village of Capileira, which is situated in a region of the Sierra Nevada mountains known as ‘Las Alpujarras’. Located between the mountains and the Mediterranean Sea, Las Alpujarras is one of the most enchanting and beautiful regions in all Spain.
From the spectacular 'lunar' terrain and snow-capped peaks (which rise above 3,400 metres), the mountain range of the Sierra Nevada slopes southwards, traversed by deep, wooded river gorges and truly wonderful countryside.
Villages and nightlife
The villages of the Alpujarras offer the tranquility and relaxation you'd expect of traditional country villages, yet also offer visitors a wide range of welcoming bars, lively restaurants and cafes. After the day's Flamenco lessons are finished in the school, evenings here are long and sociable and you're bound to make many new friends!
Brooding and brilliantly coloured countryside
Pine forests on the higher slopes give way to chestnut, walnut and cherry trees, which in turn give way to almonds, olive groves and vines, then to orange and lemon, pomegranate and quince in the valleys below.
The mountains rise up once more in La Contraviesa, like a last wave before the coast, only to fall steeply into the tropical coves and palm-fringed beaches of the Mediterranean, far below.
The high mountains have their own special beauty: wild and brooding in winter, they come alive in early summer with the scents of wild herbs and the spectacle of tiny, brilliantly coloured flowers, many of them unique to Sierra Nevada. Altitude and sun have combined to evolve more endemic botanical species in la Alpujarra than in all the rest of Europe.
Mountain goats, wild boar, foxes, eagles, goshawks and partridge inhabit the sierras. Mules and donkeys still labour in the fields, sheep and goats graze the hillsides. Trout fill the rivers.
From the snows to the sea, there are panoramic views in every direction, from the peaks of Veleta and Mulhacén to the southern sierras and the Mediterranean beyond. At sunset, the Rif mountains of Morocco are sometimes clearly visible, 200 kilometres away across the sea.
History and architecture
The Moors took refuge in these hills and resisted here, maintaining their customs and way of life for well over a hundred years after they were expelled from Granada in 1492 by their Christian conquerors. La Alpujarra was their final battlefield in Spain.
Their legacy is to be seen everywhere: in the distinctive architecture of the mountain villages and in the intricate system of irrigation waterways which they built and which still keep the landscape green and fertile, fed by the snows melting high in the sierras above.
The architecture of the little mountain villages is unique in Europe and is identical to Berber originals in the Atlas mountains of Northern Africa. With dwellings characterised by flat roofs and prominent chimney pots, the villages were built by the Berber settlers whose creation imitated and followed the half-natural, half-man made designs of their own mountain lands.
Beautiful in their simplicity, the villages appear to tumble haphazardly down the steep hillsides, connected by a labyrinth of narrow, winding cobbled streets. A picture to behold, glistening white in the sun, roses and geraniums spilling from every nook and cranny.