The mountains of the Filabres roll down in undulating slopes at their north eastern end and here, on a fertile plain, lies Antas. The river, now usually dry, has carved a ravine through the soft sandstone, where birds nest in the holes in the cliffs. All around Antas orange and lemon groves stretch for miles and other fruits and vegetables are grown on this highly cultivated area. The local market is famous in the area for the quality of its produce, and the local bars and restaurants offer good food at reasonable prices.
Antas had a number of prehistoric settlements. The remains of Neolithic and Bronze Age man can be seen in various protected sites around the town. Roman and Medieval remains have also been found here, indeed the remains of an aqueduct lie beside the road on the outskirts of the town.
Another interesting fact relating to the history of Antas is that during the 1960´s, the male population far exceeded the female. Spinsters and widows were brought in from the province of Murcia and duly integrated into the society. This is reflected in the cuisine and probably something to do with the fact that the food, and the way it is served is superior in this immediate area.
The old part of the town has charming streets and old houses and many of the new houses have been built in the style of yesteryear with a view to retaining this charm.
The Hermitage of the “Virgin of the Cabeza” is dedicated to the Patron Saint of Antas and lies outside the town on the top of a hill. It dates probably from the 16th Century and was built in the shape of a vaulted Latin cross. The main celebration of the locality is the fiesta of the Virgin of the same name and on 8thSeptember every year her image is taken from the church to the Hermitage where she is offered floral tributes after the pilgrimage.
In the middle of Lent, the people of Antas also celebrate Spring with the pagan ritual of “killing the old women”, they gather on the nearby hillside called the “Ridge of Maria” and animated by the town band, proceed to throw sweets at the local grandmothers!
Another important event in the calendar of the people of Antas are the fiestas held around August 15th, then the town is ablaze with lights and the townspeople come out to sample the tapas served at bars set up in the square and to dance to the music of the pasadoble and rumba until the early hours of the morning.
The large town of Vera is situated nearby and this, combined with the proximity of the dual carriageway which stretches all along the coast, has made of Antas a busy, lively community, where immigrants from northern climates and from South America are choosing to settle thus creating another chapter in the history of the town.