The Sierra de Tejeda, Almijara and Alhama Natural Park is home to a number of picturesque whitewashed mountain villages, the majority of which are located in the province of Malaga: Alcaucin, Canillas de Aceituno, Canillas de Albaida, Competa, Frigiliana, Nerja, Salares and Sedella, with Alhama de Granada, Arenas del Rey, Jayena and Otiva in the province of Granada.
In spite of being located in different provinces, the above-mentioned villages have a shared history and economy, and even the political boundaries have been modified in the past. Due to the rugged terrain, there are no roads crossing the heart of the park, with trade and communications limited to tracks and paths criss-crossing the mountains and valleys. It is for this reason that there are now many abandoned buildings which in their heyday, offered food and accommodation to travellers and traders.
Of the diverse cultures that have left a mark within the confines of the Natural Park, the strongest is certainly the Arabic, with small white villages disseminated throughout the hills and mountains. The area around Alhama preserves the hallmark of one of the last Nazarite kingdoms in Spain, and whose fertile lands, famous for the production of tropical fruit, still influence local gastronomy.