To reach this wonderful place, you take the road towards Uleila del Campo from Lubrin and turn left just a kilometre from the latter. The road climbs almost immediately up the steep mountainside. The road has eroded in places over the years so the white line in the middle is not always in the middle, but veers willy nilly as if whoever painted it did so after too much of the local wine! The road climbs to the summit, where walks along the top are to be recommended, and down the other side a while.
There, on the right is the marble quarry, not as big and famous as some, but still in operation. Turn left down the hill and you will reach the village of El Chive.
The village is spread along a ridge from which there are magnificent views of Mojacar and the Cabrera Mountains. The streets are narrow and the road stops suddenly in the open countryside at the far end of the village, and if you wish to continue your trip, you are obliged to double back up the hill and drive through the quarry and follow the river bed through to Cariatiz.
Many of the old houses still have the old style stable doors and in the winter the women use large tin bowls filled with smouldering charcoal to keep them warm while they watch television. An incredible mix of old and new, some of the renovated houses have marble cladding on the exterior and are proud of their new kitchens, which also sport marble work tops and exist cheek by jowl with the ancient dwellings.
The landscape is lovely, rolling hills, which are cluttered with huge limestone rocks, frequently dropping down into deep valleys. The inhabitants work the land and almond and olive groves dot the landscape. This is old Spain again. The men go to the only bar (which is hard to find), whilst the women continue with their toil.
Amazing that from places like Mojacar, modern life is so clearly visible, whilst in El Chive life continues as it has for centuries.