Located on the Mediterranean coast and built on a large rocky outcrop which rises majestically from the surrounding tropical plain. The houses, built haphazardly one against the other, open to narrow and tortuous streets, with cane plantations on the lowland area and the ancient Moorish castle at its apex (often illuminated at night, especially weekends and fiestas).
The old quarter of the village maintains the memory of medieval times and is made up of three areas, the centre, the albaicin and the brocal. The three were surrounded by a wall during the middle ages and a good part of the following centuries when Salobreña was taken by the Castillians. There are remains of many sections of the wall and of one of the towers of the old defense area, the latter having been a defensive character, and also formed access to the village. The wall was built along the contours of the high area of the rocky promontory having the castle at its peak. The rest of the remains of the wall are scarce. The remains act as buttresses for the caves (unfortunately are not open to the public). Some remains of the walls are visibly conserved almost to floor level which you can see in Albacin Bajo street.
Numerous other remains form integral parts of the walls of various houses situated in Muralla street, whose name derived from the fact that the buildings were constructed using the old wall. Four towers formed the entrance to the village which probably are integrated in their respective towers, Puerta de la Via, Postigo de Poniente, Postigo de la Boveda and Postigo o Puerta del Mar. Today only half of the remains of one tower exist in the Brocal area and is known as Torreon. Unfortunately it is only its underground structure and is not visible to the public due to its delicacy.
The Muslim presence in Salobreña during almost 8 centuries has left a legacy in the urban framework of the old village called "El Castillo". Owing to its strategic location it became an invincible fortress used also as the summer residence of the Nazari royal family and as the alcazar cum prison it held the members of this family in its dungeons when they fell in disgrace as well as other deposed kings.
In 1489 it was conquered by Francisco Ramirez of Madrid who was named governor by the Catholic king and queen for his defence of the castle after the siege of Boabdil. Its architecture is military, Muslim palacio and Christian although it’s planning resembles construction of the Nazari era with reforms made by the Castillians during the 16th century to maintain it in use as part of the defence of the coast. The brickwork construction consists of two areas, the exterior with a defensive character which divides into two parts, the most accessible to the east and the area of the "coracha" to the north, and the interior area consisting of the castle. The entrance to the fortress is by a door situated to the south in one of the quadrangular towers. The patios and the gardens of the castle are numerous and quite beautiful. A false door, which opens in the wall north of the castle, takes you into the area known as "la coracha" (leather bag). The main function of this area was to protect the supply of water to the castle.
The castle is open to visitors daily and is certainly worth a visit as the views are magnificent.
The church "Iglesia de Nuestra Señora del Rosario" is situated near the castle and was built over an Islamic mosque in the Mudejar style of the 16th century on the site. Inside is the chancel and a cupboard in the sacristy with richly carved wooden panels. It also contains statues from the 16th and 17th centuries.
Salobreña has numerous areas with beautiful views which are worth visiting: El Paseo de las Flores, El Mirador del Postigo, La Plaza de la Iglesia and El Tajo de Salobreña from which you can see the vertical walls and the rocks at the bottom which in their day were used to break the waves of the sea which surrounded Salobreña.
Historic guided tours of Salobreña are available from the Tourist Office. The tour allows visitors to discover Salobreña’s hidden secrets in the hands of a specialist local guide who points out Medieval vaults, passages and picturesque corners which normally go unnoticed. Vistors can also hear about the legends dating back from the town’s Moorish past as well as historic anecdotes. The guided tours also include information about the geological formation, the Roman settlements and how Salobreña was won by the Kingdom of Castile. The tour lasts around two hours and is guided in Spanish, English or German. Book at the Tourist Office.
Guided tour of the farming area offers visitors an opportunity to see the subtropical products – avocado, custard apple, banana, mango, sugar cane, papaya etc. The local guide will explain all about the sugar cane harvest, the sugar cane factory, the subtropical products and a chance to taste these products. The tour lasts around two hours and is given in Spanish, English or German. Book at the Tourist Office.