This municipality in the province of Malaga is situated in the Axarquia region, in the heart of Velez-Malaga to be precise. Popularly well-known as “little Gibraltar” because, in the past, the vast majority of the inhabitants smuggled tobacco that came from Gibraltar.
In the Benamargosa area they found archaeological remains that date back to the first inhabitants of the Neolithic period, although there was no evidence of Phoenician or Roman settlements. The town in fact originated in the Arab period and lasted until the year 1482; Precisely on the 21st of March of that same year, the whole Axarquia was alerted that the Christian armies were invading their territories through the western mountains on an expedition with around 1000 knights and 3000 infantrymen who had left Antequera on the 19th of March, and were all defeated.
Seeing the impossibility of having defeated the Arabs, the Christian army decided to besiege the city, which finally had to surrender on the 27th of April 1487 as they weren’t able to receive help from the Granada Kingdom; two days later, Comares also surrendered to avoid the war.
The Muslims that were left in Benamargosa and that became Christians were known as Moors and supposedly had the same rights and privileges as the Christians brought down from the north, however this was not true. With the increasing radicalisation of the church, the fanaticism grew beyond rational limits due to the influence, amongst other reasons, of Cardinal Cisneros, forcing the Moors to a series of measures that would later on cause their uprising. As from then onwards, and until the 19th century, the village was dominated by the crisis and stagnation, also adding a plague that was an endemic spreading disease during the 15th century.
In the year 1808, the Napoleonic armies reached Benamargosa; these armies were the ones that helped towards the proliferation of road bandits, which rebelled against the French conquest.
The so-called "Pozo de los Franceses" (The Frenchmen’s Well) still exists today, where, according to the story told from fathers to sons, they would throw the bewildered French soldiers that began to disappear day after day.
Benamargosa hosts many local festivities, some of them with religious origins created like in the rest of the peninsula to replace pagan celebrations or to convert the infidels:
Festivity of San Sebastian: 20th of January
Fair of the Countryside: Celebrated on a Sunday of the month of April.
Pilgrimage of the most Pure: Towards the end of May.
August Fair: Held as from the first weekend of August.
Head towards Velez Malaga and once there, take the road to Comares, the journey be car should take approximately 55 minutes (60 kilometres). You can hire a car at Malaga airport from our website. On the map here below you can see the route by car to Benamargosa from Malaga.
Town council: C/ Camino de Vélez, s/n - 29718.
Phone: +34 952 51 70 02
Official website: Ayuntamiento de Benamargosa.