If you are considering visiting the Axarquía region, you cannot ignore Competa.
The province of Malaga is known, in addition to its beaches and favorable weather conditions, also for the picturesque white villages that cover its hills. Among them, the city of Cómpeta stands out.
This beautiful city has some of the most excellent wines of the region.
As well as fantastic landscapes and a fantastic tourist offer that people walking through the historic and monumental streets will never forget.
The history of the city dates back to Roman times, when it was known as “Compita-Orum” (crossroads).
Like the rest of Andalusia, it was conquered by the Arabs, who dominated the area until the arrival of the Catholic princes, in 1487.
The re-population of the city did not begin until 1570, thanks to the migration of residents of Granada, Cordoba and Seville.
At the end of the 20th century, Cómpeta saw its population grow enormously when Germans, Danes and English bought houses and farms to settle here.
Today, Cómpeta is also a favorite holiday destination for tourists who want to spend a few days in the pleasant climate of the Costa del Sol.
“Cornisa de la Costa del Sol”
The nickname “Cornisa de la Costa del Sol” (Cornice of the Costa del Sol) is no coincidence.
It owes this name to its location at 630 meters above sea level and enveloped in the nature parks of the Sierras de Tejeda and Almijara.
This makes Competa a natural vantage point with a beautiful view of nature that extends at your feet.
The narrow streets between the white houses reveal the best corners to enjoy a drink, the delicious cuisine and make a leap into the past.
Worth seeing in Competa.
Plaza Almijara and la Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción (Church of Our Lady of the Assumption)
The most impressive building in Cómpeta is the cathedral la Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, also known as the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption.
It was built in the 16th century on the central square of the city, Plaza Almijara, and its beauty lies in the 35-meter high tower in Neomudéjar style.
This tower replaces the old minaret of the church, which was destroyed during the 1884 earthquake.
Inside the church you can admire the fresco of Our Lady of the Assumption and the baptism of Jesus, masterpieces by the painter Francisco Hernández.
And after a visit to the church, you are in one of the many bars and restaurants on the Plaza, whose terraces around the fountain enliven the atmosphere.
Moreover, the various original facades of the 19th century that embrace the square are a feast for the eyes.
El Paseo de las Tradiciones
The Paseo de las Tradiciones (promenade of traditions) is perhaps the most visited by all visitors.
On one side of the promenade, a large number of mosaics tell the history of this city in pictures.
The fundamental impact of the Arab domain and the different customs and traditions of the region are not forgotten.
The other side of the promenade is a balcony to the street below and the picturesque white facades of the competing houses.
Plaza Vendimia and las Casas Colgantes
Vendimia square is another famous square in Cómpeta, which is especially filled during the Night of Wine.
The square houses three ceramic mosaics that represent the production of muscat wine, from the grape harvest to the vine.
On the square you can also enjoy the view of las Casas Colgantes (hanging houses).
These are a group of white houses on the rocks above the old river lane that once divided Cómpeta, near Barranco Pérez and the Arroyo street.
Because of the location of the houses they seem to be hanging above the river.
Ermita de San Sebastián and Ermita de San Antón Abad de Extramuros
It is believed that the hermitage of San Sebastián, from the 16th century, was the first parish in the area, since it was founded during the Catholic reconquest.
Located in the oldest part of the city, known as El Barrio, the hermitage holds the figure of the “founder” of Cómpeta, San Sebastián.
But this is not the only safe in the city. There is also the safe of the San Antón Abad de Extramuros.
It dates from the 18th century and preserves important sacred images, such as those of the San Antón Abad and Nuestro Padre Jesús and la Borriquita.
The image would represent the entrance of Jesus to Jerusalem. This is one of the most popular stories of the Holy Week (Semana Santa) in Competa.
Museo de Artes y Costumbres Populares
This museum with two floors is located in the old barracks of the vigilante, from the 19th century.
It was created to meet the demand of the residents to have a museum where the tools used in the countryside are collected.
This museum is located in an old oil mill and the centerpiece is the mill wheel of the nineteenth century, used to make the famous wine of Cómpeta.
In the museum you also have the opportunity to buy the products of the region (wine, oil and other gastronomic delights).
This Gaudian-style vantage point offers stunning views of Cómpeta, the Maroma peak (the highest in the province of Malaga) and the nature park that surrounds the city.
Gastronomy in Cómpeta.
Wine is of course the jewel of gastronomy. Muscat, semi-sweet and dry varieties accompany the famous fennel stews and read Migas.
These are the most typical dishes from the Cómpeta area.
You can also use the garlic loin, el choto. This is a roast stew with pasta or potatoes.
Celebrations in Cómpeta.
The best time to visit Cómpeta is during one of the many festivities throughout the year.
La Feria del Barrio
When: the Sunday closest to January 20
La Feria del Barrio celebrates the patron of Competa, San Sebastián, on the Sunday closest to January 20.
In the afternoon the statue of the saint is worn in procession by the city.
Feria de San Blas
When: 3 February
On 3 February, the blessing of the rings and braids made from bread takes place in the church.
These are connected with colorful ties and medals, which the priest then blesses with holy water.
After eating the loaves of bread, those who have a mild illness or cold put on the medals and ties because they are believed to be healed in this way.
When: March / April
The most striking event of the Holy Week is the Via Crucis on Good Friday, which starts at seven in the morning.
This celebration is known as the “Procession of Men” because only men participate.
The Soledad exit takes place at night, also known as “Procession of women”.
On this occasion the image of the Virgin is exclusively accompanied by women
El Día de las Cruces
When: 3 May
The day of the crosses is celebrated, as in the whole of Spain, on 3 May.
It is then that children and parents make beautiful flower crosses that later parade through the streets of the city in a procession that is brightened up by the city band.
The tour starts from the central square and ends at the highest place, “La Cruz del Monte”, where the crosses are kept in a sanctuary.
La Feria de Verano
When: weekend closest to July 25
However, since January is not a pleasant month for street celebrations, San Sebastián is also honored during La Feria de Verano (the Summer Fair).
This continues on the weekend that is closest to July 25.
Various activities and public events are held during the celebration, both during the day and during the night.
Especially on the Plaza Almijara and on the grounds near the Plaza de la Axarquía.
La Noche del Vino
When: August 15
La Noche del Vino (Night of the wine) is perhaps the most characteristic celebration in the area.
It is celebrated on August 15 in honor of Our Lady of the Assumption, patron saint of Cómpeta.
Originally there was a farewell to farmers who left for the harvest the next day.
It was in 1973 when Aurelio Fernández invited all residents of Cómpeta to come and drink the wine for free.
Since then, the festival has attracted domestic and foreign tourists, who are waiting this summer evening to dance to Sevillian and flamenco music on the Plaza de Almijara.
But especially the free wine, on Vendimia square for example, also contributes to the large mass tourism during this party.