The heart of the Picos de Aroche
Aroche is a small, picturesque village located in the heart of the Sierra of Aracena and Picos de Aroche, some 135 kilometres from Seville, 27 from the Portuguese frontier and located on the top of a hill that dominates the extensive plains of the Vega del Rio Chanza. Obviously chosen for its strategic importance, today Aroche commands some of the most impressive views across the local stretch of the Sierra Morena.
In the hills surrounding the town, lost lost villages are quietly being reclaimed and the countryside is being renovated with life.
And, in the evening, the sunset illuminates the surrounding hills and frames the flying and diving swifts and swallows hungrily flying, in their thousands, in the quiet air.
In the valley below the village, the sanctuary of San Mames hides a secret; long ago, almost before recorded history, the area was a thriving roman settlement built on the fertile banks of the river Chanza. Only recently, the area has been carefully and lovingly excavated and a roman forum, in almost pristine condition, together with all the other aspects that signalled the establishment of a major settlement, including a temple of Mars and beautifully constructed heated public baths, have been uncovered and presented in such a way the the traveller can move freely amongst the ruins and cast the mind back to a time that was simpler in its expectation.