The Almadraba Tuna Route in Andalusia

The almadraba is a fishing art that was already practiced in Spain at the time of the Phoenicians and that today is very present in Western Andalusia. It is a fishing technique that moves around it tradition, culture, sustainable economy and tourism. Do you want to know more about this ancient fishing technique? Here we tell you everything.

What is the technique of the almadraba?

Almadraba fishing - Turismo Cádiz /

It is an ancient fishing technique used throughout the Mediterranean area. In Spain, it was mainly in Andalusia, especially in Cádiz, Huelva and, to a lesser extent, in Almería. Its use is prior to the Romans.

Take advantage of the migration made by tunas from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean, and vice versa, to install a network of networks between several small ships. A net that rises when there is a large number of these fish inside, at which time it is called the 'levanta'.

And although it is a technique that has fallen into decline, Little by little it is recovering thanks to the creation of tourist and gastronomic routes. Its objective is to revalue this ancestral tradition and its use in popular gastronomy, as well as in avant-garde cuisine.

The time of the almadraba in Andalusia

Puerto de Barbate - Consuelo Ternero /

Every May, the coasts of Cádiz and Huelva are the protagonists. There tuna approach to spawn and that is when the technique of the traps is put into practice. It is an art of sustainable fishing that many families have lived, and still live on.

Further, the almadraba has left the shores plagued with buildings that can still be seen. And there is a Almadraba Tuna Route that can be done throughout the year, although it has its maximum splendor during the months of May and June. At that time several towns in Western Andalusia celebrate authentic parties with tuna as the protagonist.

The Almadraba Tuna Route

Tuna onions

It is a route that runs through the Cadiz towns of Conil, Barbate, Zahara de los Atunes and Tarifa. As we said, to enjoy it the best months are May and June. It is then that these localities launch a whole cultural program that revolves around tuna.

Thus, we can enjoy this delicious delicacy from the moment of fishing until its cutting. Y In the bars and restaurants of the area there is a tapas contest and a gastronomic route. Likewise, a sample of tapas is offered at a symbolic price in a tent installed in the Plaza de Conil where the 'snore' or exploded view is previously shown.

There is an interpretation center

One of the buildings linked to almadraba fishing in the town of Conil is the Interpretation and Documentation Center of the Sea, Tuna and Almadrabas. An institution in which all the ins and outs of this technique so typical of this town are shown.

The museum is located in the building of La Chanca, whose operation is documented from the sixteenth century to the year 1934. It is at that time when it is decided not to penetrate the traps in the town. There, all the cutting and salting of tuna was carried out and, after his recovery as a museum, he continues with the work of protecting this fishing art.

Other spaces linked to the traps

Garum factory in Baelo Claudia

In addition, on the beaches of these towns we can still see architectural remains that served, above all, to defend the traps. It is worth mentioning the tower of Castilnovo de Conil de la Frontera. This was part of a defensive team powered by Don Alonso Pérez de Guzmán, also called Guzmán el Bueno

This tower had a double purpose: to prevent attacks by Muslims and to protect the tuna trap that was next to it. Y It was fenced to accommodate workers from the almadraba and merchants, so it had some houses and storage and storage spaces.

And as, we must also highlight the Roman city of Baelo-Claudia, located in Tarifa. A very important city in its time due to its activity linked to fishing and the technique of canning and salting. It produced the famous garum, a fish sauce much appreciated then. Its ruins by the sea are a must if you go through the area.

Video: La Ruta del Atún de Almadraba, Cádiz (November 2019).