THE Axarquia area has many wonderful places to visit and a multitude of cafés, tapas bars and restaurants from which to sample the local foods.
Many local restaurants offer three-course set ‘menu del dia’ meals and many include a drink for a fixed price.
This hails from the Franco era, when it was the law for restaurants to offer this.
For those who fancy something a little different from the traditional local fare, many resort towns offer a good selection of restaurants serving international cuisine.
From good old English grub for that ‘taste of home’ to various Mediterranean and European and more exotic cuisines including Mexican, Chinese and Indian, there is something for everyone, if you know where to look.
Take a look in your local paper or ask friends for recommendations.
While in today’s modern world it is possible to get vegetables all year round, the best produce is seasonal and locally sourced, so keep an eye out for them on restaurant menus.
Spring vegetables in southern Spain include asparagus, artichokes, peas, broad beans, potatoes, garlic, onions, radishes, and lettuce.
Spring fruits include apricots, lemons, blood oranges, strawberries, and soon cherries.
If going for that local feel why not travel inland to the white-washed village of Alcaucin in the Sierra Tejeda mountain range along the Route of Olive Oil and Mountains to see the Phoenician era Zalia Castle ruins.
While there, take some time to sample the traditional cuisine of the area with rice, meat and fish dishes being top of the menu.
Also try a delicious tapa of Jamon on the bone or Chorizo sausage, both traditional from the local area.
By Nicole Hallett
CAPTION: NATURAL BEAUTY: The Zalia Castle ruins with the Sierra Tejada and Alcaucin village in the background..