Jerez: What to See, Plus the Best Music, Hotels, Restaurants and Tapas Bars Reply

Jerez Flamenco Festival

Guardian.com–Spain’s gastronomic maridaje – the marriage of food and wine – is a definite threesome in Jerez de la Frontera, where all life is fuelled by sherry and tapas, but marches to a flamenco beat. The annual flamenco festival is its peak – not only for larger ticketed events, but also for free performances in thepeñas (social clubs), tabancos (old-style bars), and late at night in the plazas. In fact, all the city’s many festivals and ferias are accompanied by a flurry of flamenco activity – it’s just that, rather frustratingly, it’s not easy to sweep in and locate it.

Several of the tabancos actually have regular, scheduled events (and flyers for one-offs elsewhere). Best-known, and popular with locals and tourists, is Tabanco el Pasaje (C/Santa María 8) where guitarist and singer face the cramped bustle from Thursdays to Sundays. Another good option is Tabanco el Guitarrón de San Pedro (C/Bizcocheros 16) with performances on Saturday afternoons, participation flamenco on Sunday nights and, amazingly given the tight space, a cadre (guitars, singing and dancing) on Thursday nights.

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Neanderthal Faces Emerge from the Gloom of a Spanish Cave Reply

Atapuerca Neanderthal Spain

Bones and skulls found in the cave show Neanderthal facial features appearing for the first time 430,000 years ago

Ancient  skulls recovered from a deep cave in northern Spain are the oldest known remains to show clear signs of Neanderthal facial features, researchers claim. Scientists reconstructed 17 skulls from pieces of bone found in the mud at Sima de los Huesos, or the “Pit of Bones”, in the Atapuerca mountains. The skulls had some Neanderthal-like features, but their appearance was otherwise far more primitive. Juan Luis Arsuaga, professor of palaeontology at the Complutense University of Madrid, said the remains belonged to a “missing link” population that fell somewhere between the Neanderthals and a more archaic group of human forerunners.

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