It is about 60 kilometres from the city of Jaén. Its old town has been declared Property of Cultural Interest.
The imposing La Mota Fortress stands out in the Arab-origin urban landscape of Alcalá la Real. This castle marked the border between the kingdoms of Granada and Castile for over 150 years. The fortress has one of the most extensive walled perimeters in Al-Aldalus, having several defensive walls. The site reproduces the classical Muslim city model with different enclosures for defensive, residential or religious purposes. At present, it is also the site of the Life on the Frontier Visitor Centre.
After the castle, the Abbatial Priory Church is a must-see. Started in 1530, the austere exterior contrasts with the stylized Plateresque interior décor. Heading down the streets towards the old town there are many emblazoned houses and examples of traditional architecture, as well as the Abbatial Palace – the Baroque building housing the Municipal Museum. La Trinidad Convent, which was installed in a mansion in 1752, Las Angustias or La Consolación churches are, amongst others, some of the interesting sites in Alcalá la Real. The Town Hall Square, with its characteristic arcades, is one of the town’s most charming spots. Another place not to be missed is the refreshing, tree-lined Los Álamos Walk, where the old Capuchin Convent and San Antón Church are to be found.
Important among the town’s festivities are those taking place around the patron saint's day on 15 August.