Location of the Hoya of Guadix
The Hoya of Guadix (Spanish: Hoya de Guadix) is a natural plain in the northern part of the province of Granada, Andalusia, Spain. It covers some 500 square kilometres (190 sq mi), and is formed by the basins of the Rivers Fardes and Guadix. It is surrounded by the heights of the Sierra Nevada to the south, the Sierra de Baza to the east, the Sierra Mágina to the north and the Sierra Harana to the west. It is separated by the Cerro Jabalcón from the Hoya of Baza which, like the Hoya of Guadix, is one of the series of valleys forming the Surco Intrabético.
The term hoya literally means "trough" and refers to the boxed in character of the area.
There is an abundance of geological material from the Burdigalian portion of the early Miocene, some 20 million years ago. Materials of marine origin were deposited for some 7 million years, after which the basin became totally isolated from the sea. From that time, further deposits are exclusively continental, carried by flowing rivers. The current configuration of the Hoya began to take form some 500,000 years ago in a strong paleogeographic restructuring. Small rivers formed in the reliefs that surrounded the basin began a process of erosion that gave the landscape its now-characteristic gullies and badlands.
Nowadays, the waters of the Fardes and Guadix have made the Hoya de Guadix a fertile, zone for irrigated farming, including fruit orchards (especially melons), poplar trees grown for their wood, cereals, legumes and vegetables.