For me, one of the highlights of Guadalest, apart from the view when you approach the ancient town, is The Church of Our Lady of the Assumption. Situated in the old walled barrio, the church is a splendidly simple, yet elegantly beautiful demonstration of the Baroque style.
The Church of our Lady of the Assumption as seen today is not the original design as, like many churches during the Spanish Civil War era, it was looted and all but destroyed by fire.
Although originally built between 1740 and 1753 (replacing a temple dating back to the 13th century around the time of the Christian conquest), it has undergone plenty of renovation; a job that began with a radical alteration in 1962 when it was shortened in length, had its ground floor improved along with the removal of the transept and cupola.
Work continued between 1995 and 1996 during which time the interior was redecorated to its now white state, the aim of which was to preserve the building.
The Church of Our Lady of the Assumption is open most days and free to enter. The interior is a cool escape and welcome retreat from the blazing sun. It is a quiet and meditative place with simple but emotive icons in each alcove.
High above the entrance is a beautiful stained glass window which is kept in a pristine state and glows as the sun beams through it.
From the outside the building is most un-church-like and it was only upon walking passed its door that I noticed.
Your trip to Guadalest should definitely include a visit to the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption. Religious or not, its story is a captivating one, its design a simple but pleasing aesthetic and entry is free.
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