Naval (637 m) is a town in the Somontano region in Huesca Province. It is situated in the foothills of the Sierra de Arbe (Arbe Range) and surrounded by many hills of which some rise above 1100 m height.
The village is characterised by steep slopping streets. Its houses have 4 or 5 floors, which originate from the time when the village was more crowded with two or three families sharing the same house. Good examples of these can be seem in the area called Coton. Its narrow and twisting streets and passages make it one of the best conserved areas of Somontano. The old Jewish quarter was also there.
Naval is well known due to its pottery and salt extraction traditions. The former has a medieval and Morish origin and was the main economic source of the area. Naval’s pottery industry enjoyed much prestige and its potters frequently travelled to go to France to barter with their products. Nowadays, a pottery artisan can be still seen in his traditional workshop in Obradores Street, where all the potter’s workshops would have been in times gone by. Today, Naval has a Pottery Visitor Centre that can be visited in that same street.
Naval is also famous for its salt flats. In a time when salt was the main way to conserve food but there were not many salt deposits, the Spanish Crown became the owner of all salted water exploitations. Archaeological sites dated to the Bronze Age were found in Naval and that suggest that the salt spring was already known in that time. But the first document where the salt flats are mentioned dates to 1094, when Sancho Ramírez King is noted to have given salary and lifelong pension to Mr Micer de Sousa for providing salt to the crown. All the salt was stored in the big Alfolí which is still in Mayor Street. Now this is a tourist site with a relaxing spa and thalassotherapy treatments.
Naval’s profile is dominated by Santa María la Mayor Church, dated to the second half of 16th century and a designated Historic-Artistic Monument.
URTHER INFORMATION & USEFUL CONTACTS
Town Hall – 974300302
Tourist Office (summer only)
Medical center – 974300319
Pharmacy – 974300317
Police (Guardia Civil) – 974300314
Isabel’s Butcher’s – 974300365
Jovita’s backery – 974300361
Salinar (Salt SPA) – 974 990 057 (www.salinardenaval.com) Restaurante +34 699 40 39 21
Echevarría’s Pottery – 974300313
Alfonso’s Pottery – 685168286
Pottery Visitor Centre – 97430050
Naval’s Social Bar – 605900451
Brasserie – musical bar La Fábrica – 629206706
El Salinar restaurant– 699 40 39 21
Swimming Pool Bar – phone number in the Town Hall.
The social bar is open all year long except Mondays. The rest are just open in summertime.