Pinos del Valle is one of the villages of the Lecrin Valley. This is region is close to the Alpujarra and just a short drive from Granada. The village looks over the Beznar reservoir and is set amongst Pine, orange and olive trees.
The Hermitage of Cristo del Zapato is 300 metres above the village. The Ermita of the Christ of the Shoe has a large white cross above it which can be seen from the village and surrounding areas.
Exploring Lecrin Valley
Last weekend I drove to Lecrin Valley and hiked up the hill to see the Hermitage. The walk is just over 2 kms (about 1.5 miles). The challenge was not in the distance but the steep path. With a 20% incline and 300 metres uphill from Pinos del Valle this takes it´s toll on your legs as you hike up. When you look up from the village the trek doesn´t appear too challenging.
Views over Lecrin Valley
The walk takes from 30 minutes or up to an hour depending on your level of fitness. The walk is amongst pine trees. You will notice the smell of rosemary and thyme as you walk along too. This route is popular with hikers. You will usually pass people on you way up or down.
Notice the wooden signposts along the way. The track is clearly visible on the ground.
When you get to the top the views of the Sierra de Lujar and Lecrin valley are impressive.
Look over to the Alpujarra and onto the village of Pinos del Valle.
Pinos del Valle
The Hermitage above Pinos del Valle was built in the 19th century. Topped with a large cross above the chapel, it was refurbished in 1920. Inside is a painting of Saint Roque, the patron of the village.
Sadly in February 2009 the cross was struck by lightening one night. The huge cross was ruined and split in two. The hermitage caved in too.
To repair the cross and hermitage the villagers of Pinos del Valle rallied to collect funds. This is an important emblem for the locals and part of their annual fiestas as they walk up to the hermitage to celebrate the festival of San Roque each Summer.
Now rebuilt, inside the chapel there is a small altar, flowers and images left there by the villagers.
Hike up to the Cross
- How to get there: See the map below. Take A44 until the sign for Lanjaron. Turn off the motorway and see the signs for Pinos del Valle.
- Parking: As you enter into the village, turn right and follow the road until the Olive Oil Factory and Old Laundry. This a great spot to park at the Lavadero and fountain as this is the start of the walk.
- Where to eat: You can choose to take a packed lunch with you. Water: Fill up at the fountain before and after your hike. There are two places to eat in Pinos del Valle. Bar Venecia which is on the main road, just up some steps. The Hostal is in the centre of the village. Both have hot food daily.
- Forest fires: Avoid this area in high Summer. As the trek is uphill and downhill should there be a fire it´s difficult to get out quickly. Fires tend to be July & August when land is drier due to lack of rain.
- Find more information here about Lecrin Valley