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Ainsa

Aragon

Lying at an altitude of 589 m, Ainsa Sobrarbe, a municipality of 1,856 inhabitants, occupies a privileged position, close to the Pyrenees in the heart of the superb and protected mountain landscapes of the Odesa National Park and Mount Perdu, the Posets-Maladeta Park and the Sierra de Guara Natural Park.

Former capital of the medieval kingdom of Sobrarbe, it was the birthplace of the Kingdom of Aragon. Its historic centre, declared a National Historic and Artistic Monument in 1965, reflects the sumptuous period of the Middle Ages. The ruins of the castle, built in the 11th century, testify to the strategic importance of the town. The former palace of the first Kings of Aragon can be seen on the Plaza Mayor. The 12th century Sainte Marie Church and the facades of the Casa Arnal and the Casa Bielsa, both of which date from the 16th century, bear witness to the town's rich history.

During the 19th and 20th centuris, Ainsa and its surrounding area was largely abandoned by its population. Today, tourism is the principal activity. Ainsa has become a major destination for summer tourism and winter sports in Aragon. It offers a large choice of cultural activities: museums, exhibitions and thematic events such as those on the subject of mushrooms and astronomy.

Due to the strong development of tourism in the region, the municipality of Ainsa is currently managing three large projects in partnership with private and public bodies.

- The rehabilitation of the tower of the ancient castle, known as the "Tower of Homenaje", with a view to creating an interpretation centre there; the fauna of the Pyrenees and sea fossils will be the museum's main themes.

- The creation of a huge relief car-park in order to prevent parking in the historic centre.

- The promotion of the International Festival of European Music, famous throughout Spain, which aims to attract artists from all over the world.

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