7 Days Organic Farm Cookery Holidays in Mairena, Spain

  • Las Chimeneas, Calle Amargura 4, Mairena, 18493 Granada, Andalusia, Spain

Overview

Spanish Culinary Vacations

If you want to get away from it all, theres no better bolt hole than Las Chimeneas. The view alone is worth a visit - a glorious panorama taking in the Alpujarras. David and Emma are great hosts - who will do anything to make your visit perfect. This is a whole new culinary experience with simple but excellently cooked food. With a deep knowledge of the area, and an anxious enthusiasm to share about the local culture, you will experience a delightfully relaxing and enriching vacation.

Highlights

  • Visit our organic farm
  • Visit to Mairena olive mill
  • Learn about local farming methods
  • Visit to the ancient church of Jubar
  • Traditional Alpujarran cuisine
  • Daily breakfast and dinner
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • 2 days with instruction
  • English
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Casa Rural Las Chimeneas, Mairena, Spain

An extremely spacious house which has been restored in the local style and is furnished with authentic antiques throughout. There are en-suite bathroom facilities for each of the large bedrooms, each of which has its own private balcony or terrace. There is an ample living/dining room with open wood fire and a terrace with breathtaking views from which you can enjoy an evening barbecue or a dip in the pool.

El Corral, Mairena, Spain

A self-contained single bedroomed apartment located below the path next to Las Chimeneas. The apartment is ideal for two guests. The private patio has outstanding views to the coast, Sierra de Gador, and the Sierra Contaviesa mountain ranges. Enjoy your time in this quiet and unspoilt village with a small yet well-equipped studio kitchen. There is a large wood burning stove (fuel provided) for autumn and winter evenings.

La Azotea, Mairena, Spain

A self-contained single bedroom apartment adjoining Las Chimeneas. The apartment is ideal for two guests. The small private balcony has outstanding views to the coast, Sierra de Gador, and the Sierra Contaviesa mountain ranges. Guests staying at the Azotea can arrange picnics and evening meals in the main house and may make use of the patio. There is a large wood burning stove (fuel provided) for autumn and winter evenings.

La Casita, Mairena, Spain

A self-contained two bedroom house across the path from Las Chimeneas. The house is large enough for a family holiday with a dining room, living area, both bedrooms have en-suite facilities, and private balconies. There are incredible views to the coast, Sierra de Gador, and the Sierra Contaviesa mountain ranges. Guests staying at the Casita can arrange picnics and evening meals in the main house and may make use of the patio and dip pool at Casa Chimeneas.

Restaurant Las Chimeneas

Next to Casa Las Chimeneas stands the newly restored restaurant Las Chimeneas, where breakfast and evening meals are served. The dining room is a truly wonderful place to enjoy an intimate meal in the winter months or a cool beer after a long day's walking. Olive logs burn in the cast-iron stove through the winter, and the terrace provides uninterrupted views over the surrounding mountain ranges and on to the Meditteranean in the distance.

The evening meal is served in the small dining room where the very best of Alpujarran food is cooked by the ever-smiling Soledad, with whom we have worked with for many years. It has been a pleasure to exchange recipes handed down over the generations by Alpujarran families. Explore the the flavours of North Africa in a delightful fusion of Andalucian and Morroccan food.

Alpujarran cuisine sample menu

  • Ajo blanco - a local dish of almond and garlic soup
  • Roasted red pepper with anchovies and herbs
  • Spinach and goat's cheese crepe
  • Lamb cutlets served in a cherry sauce
  • Sea bream served with an almond sauce
  • Chicken breast in a fresh ginger sauce
  • Local fig cake with chocolate coating and homemade brandy cherries
  • Local almond meringues and strawberries
  • Pan de calatrava - an Alpujarran crme caramel

Cooking holidays in Southern Spain

Chef Sole's cooking receives overwhelmingly positive responses. She says, "of course they enjoy it, its made with carino" roughly translated as care and love. Using local produce and traditional recipes from the village, cooking and dining at Las Chimeneas restaurant will be one of the highlights of your visit.

Join Sole in the kitchen for a glass of wine and an informal cookery demonstration. This is especially exciting if you have enjoyed something on the menu and would like to know how it is made! In general, this holiday focuses on cooking to be a bigger part of the holiday. The activities are not set on stone. You can mix and match different activities according tou your taste.

Culinary activities and cooking classes

Learn to make local Spanish dishes such as tortilla, patatas a la pobre, or paella.

Depending on the time of year sometimes this is organised at our own organic farm where our cooks Sole and Conchi demonstrate a range of dishes cooking in the traditional way over an open fire.

More formal cookery weeks are also an option.

Visit to the Mairena olive mill.

Visit to our own organic farm - with a talk about local farming methods.

Visit to the award winning bodega Buenavista with engaging talk from the owners about how they set about reopening the family vineyard followed by wine tasting.

Various half day's strolls through almond terraces.

A range of activities are also available for families such as, fruit and vegetable picking and watering at our organic farm, milking the goats and craft mornings.

Discover secrets off the beaten path

As opposed to the Western Alpujarras, which have become increasingly busy with tourists and visitors we are lucky to be based in and utilize the more remote and unspoilt sector of the Eastern Alpujarras.

Villages on our doorstep like Yegen and Mairena are still seen by many walkers and tour operators as less accessible and consequently Mairena and its surrounding network of paths and villages benefits from being less visited than the Western Alpujarran walking centres around Orgiva and Trevelez.

We offer you a menu of possible walks and day trips from which you can choose from each day. This gives you the option to make use of our detailed knowledge of the area and to choose exactly what you would like to do on a daily basis depending on the weather and your energies.

Walking and trekking activities

Visit the ancient church of Jubar with a talk about local history and the legacy of the Moors.

Full day's hike to peak of Morron el Mediodia (2730 meters) high in the Sierra Nevada.

Full day's horse ride with experienced riders along the ancient Camino Real.

Visit to local village of Yegen, home of writer and Hispanophile Gerald Brenan.

15 kilometer mountain bike descent on forest trails back to house from mountain pass of Puerto de la Ragua.

Visit to historic city of Granada and guided tour of Alhambra.

Treasure hunts in neighboring villages.

Driving directions from Almeria Airport

Exit the airport and head north. Go across the first and second roundabouts, thus ignoring the chance to turn West (left) to travel into Almeria city.

Instead keep heading inland for 5 kilometers until you reach the Autovia (motorway) signs for the A7.

Go around the roundabout, and now head west, following signs direction Malaga.

Carry on West along the A7.

Keep going for about 30 kilometers.

There are 3 possible exits but keep on for another 3 kilometers until you reach the exit El Ejido Oueste / Berja.

You need to navigate 3 roundabouts, always following the Berja signs.

Youre now on the main road, heading north, so away from the sea behind you.

Carry on for around 15 minutes until you reach Berja.

Do not go into Berja town, but keep on the bypass to the East.

Just after the town you need to make sure that you take the A347, direction Alcolea.

Note that its easy to carry on the main road which goes under the intersection dont do this but take the ramp on the right that leads up to the roundabout.

Now take the road direction Alcolea.

Continue for 15 kilometers, always North, always uphill.

As you reach the junction, leave the A347 on the sliproad to the right, and follow the signs for Ugijar. Follow the mazy triple roundabout and exit on the A348.

Now heading west, continue on this good road downhill towards Cherin.

At the roundabout just before Cherin, head west again, following signs for Ugijar / Cadiar / Orgiva.

Carry on this road (A348 or also known as AL-6400).

Continue for 5 kilometers then exit on the slip road to the right to Ugijar.

As you leave the dual carriageway, go right at the top of the slipway, and over the speed bumps and follow the narrow road up towards Ugijar town.

Go left at the junction next to the Caja Rural bank, and head out of town, heading uphill and to the North.

Keep on uphill until you reach Mecina Alfahar. Go right here, head through the village and out the other side, and keep going for 7 winding kilometers until you come to Mairena.

Turn left into the village at the first entrance, then continue for 200 meters until you come to the village square.

Park here. Las Chimeneas is just downhill, to the left, at the very bottom of the village.

Driving directions from Mlaga via Guadix

Take the motorway East towards Antequera to Granada (approx. 1 1.5 hours) then follow the A92 in the direction of Guadix (signposted Murcia).

By-pass Guadix and follow the signs for Almeria (not Murcia).

The road leads into open country. Continue for approx. 9.5 miles until you come to a complicated new junction by a garage which is signposted on the right for La Calahorra. Take this road towards La Calahorra.

Take the road signposted for Ferreira and La Ragua. Keep on this road, (dont turn left to Ferreira) and go straight up to the mountain pass.

After about 8 miles you get to the pass of La Ragua. You now begin your descent for about 10 miles on the same road.

The first turn to the right is signposted for Valor and Mairena. Go along this road towards Mairena.

The first turn into the village of Mairena is up a gradual ramp. Do not take this, but keep on the main road keeping the village above you.

After some 300 meters you will see a second turning with a signpost for Casa Rural Las Chimeneas. This takes you past a small park with willow trees on your left, then a water trough on the right and finally into the village square.

Park in the square. Take the narrow alley running down the bottom left (South-East) corner. Our house is on the right, at the very bottom of the village, overlooking the valley behind the blue railings.

Driving directions from Mlaga Airport via Orgiva

Follow the Salida signs and head south, towards the sea. Take the left lane over the flyover, then pick up the motorway, heading left (to the east).

Drive through Malaga city, keeping on the motorway (autovia) at all times, and following signs for Granada / Almeria / Murcia.

Just after the junction to the Ciudad Jardin, the motorway splits to go north to Granada, or East to Almeria. You go east, direction Almeria.

Keep on the motorway for around 45 minutes until it comes to an end at Salobrena. Pick up the coast road and keep heading east until just before the town of Motril.

At Motril take the new motorway which heads north towards Granada.

Continue North direction Granada for approx. 15 minutes until you see signs for Orgiva.

Leave the motorway at the Orgiva exit, and take the narrow road towards Orgiva. After 15 minutes you emerge through a tunnel. Go straight on towards Torrvizcon.

Go through Torrivizcon, then continue towards Cadiar. At Cadiar, go right at the roundabout just after the BP station. Keep going on the new road, now a dual carriageway, towards Yator.

Go beyond Yator for 11 kilometers, then take the exit to Ugijar.

As you leave the dual carriageway, go left at the top of the slipway, then go over the roundabout and over the annoying speed bumps and follow the narrow road up towards Ugijar town.

Go left at the junction next to the Caja Rural bank, and head out of town, heading uphill and to the North.

Keep on uphill until you reach Mecina Alfahar. Go right here, head through the village and out the other side, and keep going for 7 winding kilometers until you come to Mairena.

Turn left into the village at the first entrance, then continue for 200 meters until you come to the village square.

Park here. Las Chimeneas is just downhill, to the left.

For information about the booking conditions, please send Las Chimeneas an inquiry.

Testimonials

  • Review by a traveler from London, United Kingdom

    "We stayed here in early November for seven nights and were delighted about the location in a small unspoiled village. Food was tremendous and we were so well looked after by Emma and David and all their team. It is an excellent spot for walking and very dry - and we had no rain - good for us , but not so good for the local farmers."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from London, UK

    "I organised a group of 22 friends to go on a walking holiday to Spain, and started the organisation 9 months ahead of time. Based on reviews, I fairly quickly found Las Chimeneas and started liaising with them by email. Emma was always were very prompt (and patient) in dealing with my enquiries, and when April came around, we were very excited about our visit. Emma also helped with ideas for other events for our free time."

    "When we arrived, everyone was happy with their rooms. The village only has 250 inhabitants, and David and Emma have bought and refurbished a number of the houses in the village and the rooms that you stay in are scattered around the village. Some are clustered around the main part of the hotel, but a few are a serious 7-minute walk up some pretty steep steps. But those ones are rewarded with some of the best views."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Gillingham, United Kingdom

    "Emma and David are without a doubt, the most helpful and obliging hosts we have ever encountered; nothing is too much trouble. Their knowledge of local history, culture, geology, etc, is vast. The setting is superb, looking out over the Alpujarras - the terrace outside the dining room has amazing views. Rooms are what you would hope for: clean, very pretty (furnished with local artefacts), plenty of hot water, comfortable. The food is exceptional. In the evening, there is a choice of three starters, mains, and desserts, with the accent on regional cookery. Veggies are well catered for. A place to come back to."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Plymouth, UK

    "David and Emma were friendly and helpful hosts and welcomed us to their lovely hotel which has been tastefully restored to give a lot of individuality to the various rooms. The evening meal was superb - fresh and local and in fact we could have chosen pretty well anything off the menu as it was all to our taste. David went out of his way to give useful advice for the ongoing days of walking and was efficient in the pickup from Granada and onward dispatch of our luggage. Overall such a good place, we must return!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Richard W. from UK

    "This was a very enjoyable stay in a beautifully positioned mountain retreat. The purpose of our visit was to walk and enjoy the Alpujarran countryside from a comfortable and well equipped base with access to excellent food, but as my wife was recovering from an operation, to rest in interesting surroundings when not up to more walking.Las Chimeneas is a number of traditional village houses carefully converted into modern, comfortable, very well equipped but traditionally furnished private rented rooms and suites, with access to an excellent restaurant offering a simple but entirely adequate breakfast, packed lunches if required, and superb (in my opinion) evening meals cooked by a delightful local lady in a Spanish, Mediterranean or North African style, using local ingredients and accompanied with a choice of carefully selected local wines. The chef is ably assisted by a fascinating gathering of British expats who in addition to contributing their favorite recipes also serve the meals and drinks, lead walks, conduct tours of local museum and sites of interests, give lifts, and generally provide unstinting advice and help on where to go, what to do and how to enjoy the area.David and Emma who own (and have converted over a number of years) this Casa, are superb hosts, always available to help and advice from their deep knowledge of the local area, its economy, history, customs, and traditions. David's knowledge is based on extensive research and practical experience, being also an owner and manager of a Finca (a smallholding) providing organic fruit, vegetables, and olive oil for his restaurant, and a leading light in the restoration of a nearby church. He will suggest walks and lead visits to his Finca, the church, the village olive press, and to other local places of interest accompanying the visits with fascinating commentaries. We had an altogether excellent week stay."

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  • Review by Anthon M. from UK

    "We were taken in by Emma and David as though we were their house guests. Our own casita with great view facing south to the distant sea. It was near winter so the wood burning stove was most welcome and cozy. Alistair, the chef, came up with exceptional recipes using fresh, local produce. The white houses of the small village were so pretty separated by narrow, steep, cobbled streets, and squares. Emma explained the workings of the village olive press and has written an affectionate book on the life of the village and some of its inhabitants. At least two well described walks ensured that we slept well in our comfortable beds."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Canberra, Australia

    "We stayed at Las Chimeneas for three nights as part of a self guided walking tour and loved every minute here. David and Emma were wonderful hosts and the accommodation was just lovely. The rooms are beautifully furnished, spacious, light and airy and the balcony overlooking the mountains and valley was a nice treat. The food served in the restaurant was amazing, and loved the "happy hour" on the balcony before dinner each night. This is a great chance to meet other guests and compare walking notes. The choice of walks from Mairena have something for everyone - traditional white washed villages, donkeys, small farms, mountains, rivers and ancient Roman and Moor ruins. Best of all, no crowds! The village of Mairena itself is charming with friendly locals and a great little bar that serves yummy tapas."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

Andalusia, Spain

Las Chimeneas offers all kinds of holidays including trekking, horse riding, cooking vacations, yoga, etc. Above all, they supply relaxation and a genuinely warm welcome.

Speaks English

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7 days / 6 nights

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This vacation is available all year round, please select an arrival date below.

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