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Jaén: Travel Notes

Land of olive groves and proud olive pickers, or so says the song. But Jaen is much more. Here is a practical guide to ensure you don’t miss out on any of its secrets.

By:  María Vázquez
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Eat Drink Live music Sleep Shop Sports and spas Museums and galleries Theatre and dance Cinema Transport Green zones Escapes


EventsFind out what’s on! Check out our events guide for Andalusia.
Essential: walking up from the Cathedral to the fortress of the Castle of Santa Catalina to take a look at the view
The weather:

One of the best ways to get to know the city is with a walk from the cathedral to the fortress of Santa Catalina Castle (C/ Maestra, 18, 953219116) via the old quarter. The starting point: Pósito Square (from the year 1900). Around the square are many typical bars with terraces from where you can sit and watch the world go by. The Bar El Pósito (Plaza del Pósito, open from 12,00 to 24,00, ) is a fabulous meeting point to enjoy wines, beer, coffee and drinks, as well as music (jazz 24/7), photos and paintings all over the walls. The bar Bodegón (Plaza del Pósito, open from 13,00 to 17,00) is a cellar where you can enjoy and purchase fresh produce.

Beside Pósito, you will find the San Francisco wholesale food market (C/ Joaquín Tenorio, s/n, 953234232) where you can buy fresh produce (black pudding, chorizo, game, wild meat, beans…). Once you get to Santa María Square, you’ve reached the Cathedral (Plaza de Santa María, s/n, 953234233, Canditate for a world heritage site, it houses the famous Santa Rostra relic and it is surrounded by several Renaissance palaces: the Obispado Palace, the Vélez Palace and the Provincial Council. Head up to the hills you to visit the Jewish and Mary Magdalene districts, both of Arab origin.

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In the Jewish Quarter, dating from the year 612, walk up to Calle Maestra, off which are several labyrinth-style alleys, just like a souk (open-air marketplace). Just a step away, you will see a series of old taverns known as “Las Tascas”. This urban area has a lot of charm, aside from its wine! Your best bet is to wander in and out of El Gorrión (C/ Arco del Consuelo), the Manchega (C/ Bernardo López, 8, 953232192), the Manila (C/ Maestra, 4, 953232218), and La Barra (C/ de la Parra). You’ll have to tear yourself away to continue the uphill battle to the Mary Magdalene district. Calle Santa Úrsula takes you to a convent of the same name (famous for its confectionary. By following the calle Santo Domingo Bajo you’ll end up at Villadompardo Palace (Plaza Santa Luisa de Marillac, s/n, 953248000), in whose basement lies the largest and oldest Arab baths in Europe. They won the “Europa Nostra” gold medal for their excellent restoration.

When heading back from the Jewish Quarter you’ll have to ask for the Carrera de Jesús, the large avenue that will take you from the cathedral to the edge of the castle. After a 30 minute stroll surrounded by pine forest and with the Tomillo district at your back, you’ll reach the foot of the fortress, now part of the Parador Hotel (Castillo de Santa Catalina, s/n, 953230000,


Tertulia recommends


Quick lunch
El Pecado, 20 €
C/ Conde

Early morning coffee
Colombia 50
Avda. de Madrid

Working lunch with colleagues
Entre tapas y vinos, 30 €
Paseo España, 16

Cheap and cheerful
Mesón Los Monteros, 20 €
C/ Salsipuedes, 2

Classic tapas
Marisquería El Pato Rojo, 30 €
C/ Bernabé Soriano, 12

Classic tapas
El Cuatro Esquinas, 10 €
C/ Teodoro Calvache

Local cuisine
El Pilar del Arrabalejo, 30 €
C/ Millán de Priego, 49

Need to impress
Restaurante Horno Salvador, 50 €
Carretera del Castillo de Santa Catalina, Km. 3,5

El Bahía, 40 €
Plaza San Roque, 1

Everyone is talking about it
El Pósito, 20 €
Plaza del Pósito

Great coffee
Cafetería Berges
C/ Arquitecto Berges, 21

Something different
Panadería-Pastelería La Colmena
(desde las 5 a.m.)
C/ Fuente del Alamillo, 16


Great for a chat
San Patrick
C/ Alhóndiga, 39

Great for a chat
San Louis
C/ San Francisco Javier

Everyone is talking about it
C/ La Rioja

Something different
El Aquelarre
C/ Nueva, 7

To be seen
El Deán
Plaza Deán Mazas

El Toro
C/ San Francisco Javier

To be seen
Mosses Music-Club
C/ Gracianas, 12

Discoteca Heaven
Paseo de la Estación, 54

Last round
Ctra. Madrid Km. 333

 Live music

Chubby Cheek
C/ San Francisco Javier, 7

Great live music
Sala Iroquai
Calle Adarves Bajos, 41

A little of everything
Auditorio de La Alamadea
Alameda de Calvo Sotelo


Hotel Xauen, 70 €
Plaza Deán Mazas, 3

Hostal La Española
C/ Bernardo López, 9

Hotel Infanta Cristina, 100 €
Avda. de Madrid, s/n

Cheap and cheerful
Hotel Condestable Iranzo
Paseo de la Estación, 32
953222800, ‎

Hidden away
Hotel Palacio de Mengibar, 120 €
Plaza de la Constitución, 8
Mengíbar, Jaén

They take dogs
Husa Europa, 75 €
Plaza de Belén, 1

Hotel Parador de Jaén, 180 €
Castillo de Santa Catalina
Carretera Castillo de Santa Catalina

Youth Hostel
Albergue juvenil y spa, 20 €
C/ Borja, s/n


El Real Musical
Plaza de San Ildefonso, 6

For the home
Tres Morillas
C/ Tres Morillas, 20

Second hand
C/ Capitán Oviedo, 13

Something for yourself
Plaza de San Ildefonso

Street market
Mercado de San Francisco
C/ Joaquín Tenorio, s/n

International press
C/ Cerón 17


Castle of Santa Catalina
C/ Maestra, 18

Santa Iglesia Cathedral
Plaza de Santa María, s/n

Palace of Villardompardo
Plaza Santa Luisa de Marillac, s/n

City walls of Jaen
Surrounding the ancient city

La Judería (Jewish Quarter)
Small labyrinthine alleys and the ideal place to breath in the historic character of the city.

El Monumento a las Batallas
Plaza de las Batallas
A monument to the Greek goddess of victory to commemorate the military battles that have marked Jaen.

 Sports and spas

Getting sweaty
Aquagym Jaén
C/ Sagrada Familia, 4-6

Wellness Balneario Urbano Plenarium
C/ Juanito Valderrama 2

Be adventurous
Alma Gaia
Deportes de aventura y actividades programadas
C/ Maestro Cebrián, 5

Sports center
Avenida de Granada, s/n

Team sports
Nuevo Estadio de la Victoria
Carretera de Granada, s/n

 Museums and galleries

International Museum for Naïve Art
Plaza de Santa Luisa de Marillac
(Plazoleta del Pato)

Museo Catedralicio
Iglesia de la Catedral
Plaza de Santa María

Museo Provincial de Jaén
Arqueología y Bellas Artes
Paseo de la Estación, 27
95327450, 953250600

Customs and crafts
Museo de Artes y Costumbre populares
Plaza de Santa Luisa de Marillac
(Plazoleta del Pato)

 Theatre and dance

Teatro Infanta Leonor
C/ Maestra, 18

A little of everything
Teatro Darymelia
Festival de Otoño
C/ Colón, 6


Original version
Cine Club Universidad Popular
Avda. Andalucía 47

Cine Cervantes
C/ Bernabé Soriano, 31

Cines Alkázar I y II
C/ Muñoz Garnica, 4


Car rental
Europcar y National Atesa
Plaza Jaén Por La Paz, s/n

Radio Taxi

 Green zones

Parque de la Victoria
A veritable oasis whose wide shadows offer respite from the chaos during the summer months.

Alameda Calvo Sotelo
A tree-lined avenue whose auditorium is a meeting point for the culturally minded.


For a change of scene, the best option is to indulge in home-grown produce. They call it Oil Tourism and it consists of olive grove landscapes, gastronomy, culture and entertainment. First stop has to be Museum-School Hacienda La Laguna, just 30 kilometres from the city (Puente del obispo, Baeza, 953765142, Also a rural hotel, this is the best place to find out about the entire olive oil process. If you feel like being a little more adventurous, you can hire a bike and cycle The Olive Oil Trail . The route goes down the old railway line, known as the olive train, for 121 kilometres long and even takes you into the province of Córdoba.


Useful contacts

Town Hall
Plaza Santa María, 1

Jaén University
Campus Las Lagunillas, s/n

Hospital Princesa de España
Avenida de Madrid, s/n

Emergency Medical Attention

Avenida Andalucía, s/n

Post office
Plaza de los Jardinillos, s/n

Local police

Ecologists in Action
Avda. de Andalucía, 47

24-hour pharmacy
Paseo de la Estación, 52


Getting there?

By air
The closest airport is Granada (90 Km)

By train
Plaza de las Culturas, s/n
902240202, Horarios en

By bus
Bus Station
Pza. Coca de la Piñera, 6

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Pon tu propia imagen con Gravatar
El 29 January 2009 a las 10:38 PM, Rachel dijo...

Great to see Jaen in focus, lots of good info - keep it up.

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El 10 September 2010 a las 5:23 PM, jose chaves dijo...

HOLA : megustaria que pusieseis bien la direccion del alojamiento rual y restaurante la caseria de piedra toda la informacion la podeis ver en nuestra web .
muchas gracias jose

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El 9 February 2012 a las 11:34 AM, Rosa dijo...

En lo referente a la recomendación del bar El Pósito, no estoy de acuerdo. El sitio es bonito, pero el servicio es malo y las copas no las elaboran bien. Los camareros son bastante antipáticos.

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El 10 January 2013 a las 7:43 PM, jose chaves dijo...

Caserio Andaluz Centenario, enclavado en plena naturaleza, rodeado de varios bosques de pinos jovenes y olivares, vistas panaramicas y todas las comodidades ideales para que la estancia le resulte lo más cómoda posible. Este lugar se llama Alojamiento Rural “La Casería de Piedra”, restaurante y desde aquí, le invitamos a conocerla y degustar nuestra cocina Jaenera.

Nuestro principal argumento es la CALIDAD.

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