Located in the beautiful and fertile Jalon valley laying between mountains and ravines is the picturesque, peaceful and traditional village of Lliber. With a population of around 500 it is the smallest village in the Vall de Pop region. Here friendy locals warmly greet visitors to their lovely quaint village, once known by the Roman name of “praedium Liberii” (farm of Liberius).
During the Middle Ages and the Renaissance Lliber was inhabited by the north African Moors, who conquered and dwelt in this part of Spain, until their expulsion in 1609, when the region once again returned to the Christian faith.
Although only a small village, Lliber offers the visitor many amenities, with various shops for those everyday requirements, plus bars serving a selection of fresh, tasty, simple and inexpensive local food and drink. Be sure to try the delicious “Vall de Xalo” red and sweet white Muscatel wines produced from the nearby village vineyards.
The larger village of Jalon (pop 2500) is just 1km away, and can be reached on foot in 15 minutes along the flat straight valley road which connects the two villages. Jalon has a much larger selection of bars, restaurants, medical centre, supermarket and banks etc. Jalon also has a Tourist Information Office, where the helpful English-speaking staff offer informative advice on the region to visitors, supplying free brochures, maps etc., if required.
Lliber lays next to the Jalon River overlooking the fertile Jalon Valley floor with its patchwork of vineyards, orange, almond and olive groves, thanks to the system of “bancales” or terracing with stones, and is especially picturesque in spring when the additional splendour of wild flowers complements the myriad of blossom from the various agricultural crops.
Over the last few years the village has seen a gradual growth in residents from other European countries ensuring a true cosmopolitan feel, however Lliber still retains the look and charm of a very traditional Spanish village.
There are many routed walks in and around the village where visitors can marvel at the splendour of the surrounding countryside, which constantly changes throughout the seasons.
Recommendable walks are those of Avenc, the Penya Rotja, Montanya Llarga, Marnes, Agres and Gorgos. The lovely village Church of St Cosme and St Damián is definitely worth viewing.
Lliber celebrates its fiesta in the third week of August each year. This involves the closing of the main road through the village for that week, with alternative routes around the village being used instead. This fiesta belies Lliber’s size as it attracts many locals and visitors from neighbouring villages, with lots of eating, drinking, dancing, music, “bull-running” and fireworks. A spectacle not to be missed, and one that will live in the memory for a very long time.
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