Diezma is nestled into the plain at the foot of the Monte de la Yedra, at 1,233 metres above sea level. From here you get wonderful views of the Sierra Nevada and this is why the town is also known as ‘El Mirador de Sierra Nevada’ (meaning ‘the viewpoint of the Sierra Nevada’). Part of the municipal district is included in the Parque Natural de la Sierra de Huétor, so it is the ideal place to go hiking, biking and climbing, especially around the Castillo de Cabrera. The Cueva del Agua, a natural cave with stalactites and stalagmites, is of particular interest.
The climate here is pleasant: it is warm in summer and cold in winter. The local economy is based on agriculture, especially on olive growing. The original old town is well preserved, with its labyrinthine network of narrow streets.
The town dates back to the Roman period, when it served as a stopping place for travellers going along the Via Augusta from Acci to Iliberis. Its name comes from the term that alludes to a religious tax, the tithe (‘diezmo’ in Spanish) that residents paid to the church, which was a tenth of the produce of the town.
In the Arab times the town was set away from the road and became a farmhouse called Dexma. In its new location it was constantly hit by raids from the Zirids and also the Christians led by Alfonso VI of Castile. From here, Christian troops tried to surround Guadix and access Granada.
When the Catholic Kings conquered the area in 1490, the lands were granted half to Luis Giral and half to Juan de la Cueva. However, in 1536 the former bought all the lands off Juan de la Cueva and established the title of Mayorazgo de Diezma, which later became an independent municipality. The first references to Diezma date back to the synod of Guadix and Baza.
During the 19th century French troops were also stationed here.
Diezma is famous for its excellent partridges cooked in a special sauce or marinade, as well as for its handmade cheeses and liquors. The local cuisine is certainly influenced by Moorish dishes. Other typical specialities are the Gachas, roast lamb, ham and gazpacho. For the festival of San Blas, special pastries are made, which are certainly worth a try.