Spotlight on Bigastro

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The 18th century is the beautiful Church of Our Lady of the Belen.

Located on the main Orihuela-Torrevieja road Bigastro has done and, is continuing to do, everything to ensure that it has lots to offer the local community and the visitor alike. It is ideally situated as the centre of the triangle formed by Murcia, Torrevieja and Elche and, as such, has an important influence on the area.

In common with many other towns and villages of the Vega Baja, Bigastro has had a colourful history and did not really have its own independence until the 18th century when it ceased to come under the influence of Murcia. Also of the 18th century is the beautiful Church of Our Lady of the Belen. It is worth seeing from the outside as it stands proudly in the main town square, but the interior is truly magnificent. However note the church is closed during the siesta hours.

Music and musicians are very important to the people here and a new auditorium has been built in the main centre specifically for the purpose of holding musical concerts and festivals. To underline their love of music there is an impressive statue in the town square depicting a harp with a scroll carrying the words of pride in and love of their town.

Bigastro is twinned with two other towns in countries within the European Union, Cisano Sal Neva in Italy and Le Vigan in France and the town plays host to visitors from both of these towns and enjoys playing its part in promoting the European Union. It also welcomes and offers the visitor the opportunity to enjoy many open air activities and has purpose built recreation areas for these purposes which are situated against the backdrop of the mountains.

La Pedrera protected parkland is one location where everything is provided to ensure that there is something for everyone. There are camping sites, a swimming pool, an impressive play area for children, barbeques, undercover seating, practice golf and a restaurant, all there to be enjoyed. It also allows for the walker to take a stroll around the area to see at first hand the flora and fauna. In addition there is a cycle track surrounding the area for the enthusiast. Three such intrepid cyclists said that they regularly cycled to Bigastro to enjoy the facilities.

Providing for children is very important here and one square within the centre of the village has play equipment and is fenced to allow children to play safely whilst their parents sit and chat with friends.

In October of each year the townspeople hold an Autumn Fair and this not only involves the local population but also allows foreign residents the chance to play their part in contributing to the success of the event. It is normally a two day event held around mid-October and many events are organised for the enjoyment of everyone.  There are films, musical concerts, dance performances and even an ecological picnic for the children.

View of Bigastro in the foreground and the Vega Baja del Segura

Arts and craft workshops, puppet theatre, hair braiding and lace making are just some of the activities taking place within the centre of the town. For the more adventurous there is an organised horseback trip through the countryside surrounding Bigastro and organised walks including a countryside walk, a tour of the centre and a walk through areas of natural interest. Add to this the tasting of ecological products and it is a fair for everyone.

As well as tasting the ecological products the gastronomy of Bigastro has its own identity and local dishes include, cocido con pelotas (Chick pea stew with dumplings), rice with rabbit, cochinillos (stuffed squid), pigs trotters, tripe, goats leg and of course a huge variety of tapas. Not forgetting of course that for those not wanting to sample some of the local dishes there is also a full range of more traditional dishes on offer in the many of the bars and restaurants.

 

 

 

 

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