After leaving the coast around Almeria our journey took us inland and along the winding and spectacular A-4131 in the Alpujarras with its breathtaking scenery around every bend.
I have had the pleasure of driving some stunning roads such as those passing through the Picos de Europa but this route to the Alpujarras is by far the most amazing road in terms of vistas I have ever taken.
From the outset the narrow road winds heavily upwards and snakes about the face of the mountains until it peaks at around 600m where views of the coast lie ahead while behind the majestic peaks of the Alpujarras dominate the entire landscape. The greenery is magnificent and the blue sky laden with white cumulonimbus is a picture card that etches indelibly in the memory.
The A-4131 follows the crest of a mountains for several kilometres before turning inland at Haza del Lino; a buzzing little village that has a few houses, a bus stop and a lively bar serving cervezas and tapas to passing travellers, the fresh and weary alike. On the roof dogs bark at strangers and the land beyond lies hidden until the next bend is rounded.
I find it a strange concept to give a road that so profusely showers you with such epic views and wonderful sensations a number to mark it by; surely it should have a name worthy of its magnificence.
From its highest point it feels like you can see the whole of creation with Mulhacen far to the right and a snaking path to the sea on the left. Turning inland will take you to the Alpujarras proper where villages like Torvizcon and Ugijar await with their surprises and secrets; pockets of life clinging to the face of creation’s greatest achievements, living harmoniously with nature’s demands, rigours and bounties.
The A-4131 provides true meaning to the notion that it is not about the destination, but the journey itself.
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