There has been a human settlement on the site of this small town (current population just over 4,800) since Neolithic times. Just 15km north-west of Antequera on the A92, on the lower slopes of the Sierra de Mollina, this is set in perfect olive and cereal country. It is also a mere ten km from the Laguna de Fuente de la Piedra lake, famous for its pink flamingos.
Four km outside town there are the ruins of the fort of Castellum of Santillán, originally a settlement built around a Roman villa and surrounding outbuildings covering an area of 1400 square metres. The Castellum was later reinforced with defensive walls, a sign of the upheavals in this part of Andalucía in Roman times.