Puerta de Purchena
Yesterday morning I, Digby, went on one of Jose Campoy’s guided walks around Almeria City. This time, the group met at the Puerta de Purchena at the heart of the city.
Building in the Puerta de Purchena
The streets in the centre of Almeria are mostly lined with modren buildings with shops at street level and apartments above. However, in between these unremarkable, high rise edificios are some architectural gems from earlier days. All you have to do is look above the shop fronts and you will see some lovely facades like this one in the Puerta de Purchena.
Statue of Nicolás Salmerón
The group gathered here near the statue of Nicolás Salmerón, the President of the 1st Spanish Republic who was born in Almeria in 1837. His figure is not erected on a plinth but stands on the pavement as if he were among the pedestrians.
Tapas bar in Calle de Antonio Vico
From the Puerta de Purchena we walked down Calle de Antonio Vico towards the city walls. Along this narrow street there are other attractive buildings. I liked the facade of this tapas bar.
Ornate facade in Calle Antonio Vico
This house has a particularly ornate facade. The carvings would suggest it once belonged to members of the nobility but it looks quite small from the street. Single storey with just one door and window to the street.
More houses in Calle Antonio Vico
On the opposite side of the street is another interesting building, the outside walls of which are covered in tiles.
The first gateway in the city walls
At the top of this street we reached the city walls where the first of the old gates led into a cul de sac.
Old house by the fortifications
This old house is almost touching the old fortifications.
Modern Almeria with the old walls in the foreground
Looking back over the start of the city walls there are some good views of the modern city of Almeria. The contrast between old and new is very evident in this photo.
Statue od San Cristóbal
We walked up to the nearby the statue of San Cristóbal. As you can see it was a lovely, cloudless morning.
Overlooking the Mediterranean
His statue overlooks the Mediterranean and there are dramatic views looking into the light of the city and the sea.
Muralla de Hayrán, Alcazaba and La Chanca
The city wall, Muralla de Hayrán, leads up to the castle of the Alcazaba. In this photo you can see the old gypsy quarter, La Chanca, below and to the right of the Alcazaba.
Ancient gateway in the wall
We passed through this ancient gateway to the other side of the wall.
The battlements and modern city below
Looking down onto the city from this side provided another stunning view into the light with the fortifications leading down to modern Almeria.
The great walls of Almeria
Looking back the other way one can appreciate the grandeur of these structures. During the time of the Moors, Almeria had the longest city walls in Spain.
Traditional architecture in the city centre
I did not have time to stay longer with the group so I walked back to the Puerta de Purchena and then along the Rambla de Obispo Orberá to the car park in the Rambla de Bélen. There are some lovely buildings along the way. I thought this one was particularly magnificent.
I always stop at Casa Blanes along this street to buy spices, loose tea and dried fruits in the shop on the ground floor. This is another beautiful old building.
Sherries from the barrel
Also along this street, I was intrigued by this bodega which sold wine and sherries from the barrel and served delicious tapas.
Inside Bodega Aranda
It was obviously a popular place with the gentlemen of the city who were congregating inside the great wooden doorway. I was only in Almeria for a couple of hours but packed a lot into this short visit.