By Sally Harrison
NESTLED into the hillside at 303m above sea level is the mountainous village of Iznate.
With the mountain ranges of Sierra Tejeda, Sierra Almijara and Sierra de Camarolos marking the horizon, the village boasts spectacular views in almost all directions.
This area is famous for its scrumptious muscatel grapes – which make delicious wines and raisins – and every August the village holds a festival to celebrate them.
The village is full of narrow, steep streets with houses that cling together in tight clusters and architecture that was shaped by eight centuries of Islamic occupation.
Many houses have beautiful patios with splashes of colourful plants spilling over the assorted terracotta pots.
Indeed, the women of the village all seem to have green fingers – or perhaps it is something to do with the fact that they wipe the leaves with beer!
Interestingly, for several years around 1570, the village was uninhabited after the expulsion of the moriscos (Muslim converts to Christianity) who left for Tunisia and North Africa.
New inhabitants eventually arrived from Antequera and Estepa.
Sadly its grape industry was all but ruined following an outbreak of the phylloxera pest in the late 19th Century.
Today Iznate is a busy, thriving village full of a good mixture of all nationalities rubbing along nicely together.