The traditional way of life survives in this small, quiet village in the Sierra de las Estancias, as can be seen by the large numbers of cortijadas – small clusters of houses around a central manor house – in and around the town, such as Los Llanos, Santo Petar and Los Pardos.
Taberno is on one of the routes between Vélez Rubio and the large market town of Huercal Overa and now that the roads have been improved, is less than half an hour´s drive from the latter. However, the village itself boasts a municipal swimming pool and sports facilities; and for visitors, there is an hostal and a couple of bars and restaurants, one of which is owned by an English couple, and indeed quite a few people from northern Europe have made this their home.
During the Middle Ages, Taberno was under the influence of Velez Rubio and the sobriety of that era can still be noted in the quiet diligence of its inhabitants and the architecture. The parish church of San Jose is a simple building as are many of the houses, although stately in their solid way, with grilles and metal balustrades that give the larger houses a distinguished air.
The hard working people of this municipality have, for centuries, produced cereals, vegetables, almonds and olives. They are also renowned for the breeding of sheep and goats and are one of the main suppliers of goat's milk in the area and have sold the woollen materials in the nearby markets.
It can be extremely chilly up here in the winter, but spring comes early and the bleakness of the vast spread of land down towards Huercal Overa, is transformed, first by the spectacle of the almond blossom and then the beautiful flowers, which seem to spread around like endless carpets of colour.
Carnival time in February is famous in the province for the Dance of the Souls, a festivity that dates from the 17th Century and prompted by a squad of animators is one of the liveliest, participatory and creative in the area. This tradition, so faithfully kept for so long, is clearly a sign of the independence of Taberno, which has been an autonomous municipality since 1839.
Now that there are more benefits for farmers and the nearby reservoir should be able to ease the ever present problem of lack of rainfall, Taberno commences the new century with renewed optimism, willing to consolidate its simple but satisfactory way of life.
It seems as if, in this village on the slopes of the Madroño mountain with the
Vélez behind and the Almanzora valley in front, the Mediterranean and the
interior shake each others´ hand, thus marking the geographical and historic
border between them peacefully and gently.