Pozo de Nieve Roundabout – Ibi, Spain - Gastro Obscura

Ibi, Spain

Pozo de Nieve Roundabout

A replica of the ice houses that once formed the basis of a local ice cream industry sits proudly in the middle of traffic. 

In the middle of a traffic roundabout, a small round building celebrates the town of Ibi’s rich history of producing ice and ice cream. Although the structure is merely for show, it is a replica of the ice houses that once dotted the surrounding mountains and provided chilly resources to those in town.  

Ibi, located in the Alicante region of Spain, has long been famous for its ice cream. Before the advent of artificial ice machines in the 19th century, local ice cream makers relied on ice houses, known in in Spanish as pozo de nieve and Valencian as pou de neu, to store snow that they’d compact into ice. These structures consisted of deep holes in the ground with a circular building on top. If you walk around the surrounding hills today, you will encounter some shells of abandoned pozos de nieves as well as a couple of restored ones.

The roundabout ice house in Ibi also features a replica of the kind of two-wheeled cart that was once used to transport the ice from the mountains into town. It’s not the only celebration of the town’s delicious history: There’s also a nearby statue commemorating local artisan ice cream makers. For those who want to experience Ibi’s ice-cream reputation first hand, the town celebrates the Geladors Festival, an ice cream celebration with loads of free samples for kids, in February.

Know Before You Go

You can park for free in the nearby supermarket parking lot.

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