Guide to Albacete – Castilla La Mancha, Spain
Albacete is the capital city of the province of the same name and is one of the largest cities in the region of Castilla La Mancha.
The city comprises the picturesque upper old town and the new (or lower town) which was mostly erected after the city became the provincial capital in 1833. The province is famed for hunting and fishing and during the partridge season, visitors from both Spain and abroad gather to take advantage of the spoils of the land.
The South Eastern part of the province is where you can see the foothills of the Sierra de Segura with beautiful mountain landscapes. The source of the Mundo River in Riopar, a tributary of the Segura, is especially breathtaking as too is the natural phenomenon of the Lagoons of Ruidera, near Ossa de Montiel. A visit should also be made to La Roda, Chinchilla, Villarrobledo and Almansa, where you can see aristocratic mansions dating back to medieval times. Alpera and Minateda cave paintings can also be found in natural shelters dating back to the neolithic age.
Albacete also has a very interesting Archaeological Museum with modern painting collections dedicated to Benjamin Palencia – the renowned self-taught Spanish artist.
One of the most noteworthy attractions of Albacete and a building no visitor should miss is the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista. The interesting thing to note about this Cathedral was that construction was not finished until the 20th century. More than 400 years of construction allow visitors to view a veritable treasure chest of architectural history.
Albacete is further known worldwide for its cutlery and Saffron production. It is surrounded by a fertile plain which produces a considerable quantity of the saffron produced in Spain today. Albacete formerly had an extensive trade in cutlery but nowadays is more famous for its daggers, which are held in high regard by Spaniards. They are formidable weapons, of course manufacture, but with richly ornamented handles; and they frequently bear proverbial inscriptions suitable to their murderous appearance.