Los Algarrobales is set amongst such captivating scenery that it could be easy to forget about the history of the land. Blood and Love in the Sierra is a yearly event, held in Grazalema, that brings the past to life. This year the historical recreation will take place on the 6th October and will replicate the town as it was in 1832.

During this period, the areas surrounding Los Algarrobales were home to bandits. Money and farmland were owned by only a powerful few which caused those in need to turn to crime to survive. Some bandits became particularly famous outlaws, smuggling, thieving and extorting the rich. But the most revered bandit of the Grazalema mountains was Jose Maria “El Tempranillo”. Old people said that “El Tempranillo” used as secret hiding place” Los Algarrobales”. After he killed a local wealthy man in a brawl aged 16, his notoriety began to grow. He was such a powerful figure that he still has the reputation of being an Andalusian Robin Hood.

The charm of Grazalema has not changed since the days of “El Tempranillo” and the whole town gets involved in creating a realistic atmosphere. 500 residents and 50 actors dress in the traditional costumes of the era and the story of ‘El Tempranillo” is told throughout the day. The Plaza de los Asomaderos acts as the main stage, recreating the old taverns, farmhouses, factories and the traditional rural houses.

Other areas of the town are also open for exploration. The town hall, jail, church and, of course, bandit camps will host theatre performances as well as the quintessential flamenco music from the era. Last, but not least, free tastings of traditional tapas will be offered to visitors in some areas, so you won’t have to steal for your food like the bandits!

Most importantly, the event celebrates the culture of the land. Whether or not you will be able to make it along, Blood and Love in the Sierra is a wonderful reminder that when we immerse ourselves in history, we get to see our environment in a whole new light.