Tourist informationHistoryGastronomy

Located at the foot of the Vega de Granada, Atarfe has both agricultural and mountainous areas. In the municipality you can visit the ruins of the Medina Elvira, the town built between the 8th and 11th centuries on the site of the Roman town Iliberis, considered the core of the city of Granada as we know it today.

The foundation of Elvira took place a few years after the entry of Arab-Berber troops against the ruinous Roman state of Iliberis. Arabs and Jews inhabited this former capital of the region, also known as Eliberri by the Visigoths.  There was constant internal friction between the two peoples, so the Arabs were forced to leave and instead settled in the Albaicín and Alhambra districts of Granada. This is the historical connection between Medina Elvira and the Albaicín district, where numerous inscriptions have been found referring to Iliberis. Granada is almost a continuation of Iliberis. The Roman and Arab Granada existed side by side with Iliberis, although the former was always more powerful and more politically important.

This city used to be a Neolithic settlement. Later it was inhabited by the Iberians, Romans and Visigoths. It was known as Elvira and it was the capital of the Cora (administrative district) of Elvira during the Cordoba Caliphate. In the 11th century, the Zirí Dynasty court moved to Granada, so Elvira lost much of its political power. This resulted in a mass emigration to the new capital. In 1485 the Catholic Kings destroyed the remains of this town, sinking it into oblivion. It was in the mid-19th century that the town gained importance in the municipality when numerous Roman and Moorish remains were found.

Atarfe has a wide range of delicious traditional dishes thanks to its rich tradition in growing vegetables and legumes. Many of these dishes have Arab influences, as can be seen in the stews, bean omelettes and gazpacho. The Ensaladilla de la Sierra, a potato-based dish, was created for people walking up into the mountains. Custard curls and Flores are some of their best pastries.


Information about the Municipality

Region: Granada and its surroundings
Postcode: 18230
Distance from Granada (km): 11
Number of inhabitants: 12919
People: Atarfeños
Web: Acceder a su web
Filter by:

Ermita de los Tres Juanes


This is the most interesting religious building in the local area. It is located on the Cerro del Castillejo in the Sierra Elvira. The Ermita de los Tres Juanes was built in 1941 and is dedicated to St John the [...]

Ermita de Santa Ana


The Church of St Anne is architecturally more modest than the parish church, but in no way less historically significant. It is situated on a small hill to the northwest of the old town centre. It was built on the [...]

Iglesia parroquial de Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación


It is Atarfe’s main historical monument and, according to the “Libro de Hábices”, it was built on the site of the former mosque of Xini. It is rectangular in shape and divided into three unequal naves. It has seven altars [...]

‘El Arca de los Tiempos’ Museum


Inside the museum the scene has been set to take the visitor on a journey through history, starting from pre-historic times until the present day. The scenes are enhanced by lights and sounds, guided by an actress who will tell [...]

Atarfe Museum of Natural Science


The exhibits in this museum include: a collection of minerals, gems and ornamental stones, rocks, fossils, marine molluscs, lepidoptera and a photographic exhibition of the area’s native fauna. The museum is housed in the Ermita de los Tres Juanes, within [...]

Celebrations in honour of the Virgen del Carmen (Sierra Elvira)


They have parades around the town and the parade of the patron accompanied by the band Amigos de la Musica de Atarfe. They have as well fireworks, night parties, tapas tasting, games and contests and the election of the Queen [...]


Registro | Contraseña perdida?