The Pueblos Blancos of the Serrania de Ronda

Published on 20/09/2010 in Holidays in Spain

The Serrania de Ronda is a mountainous area between the Costa del Sol and Seville that is famous throughout the world for it's beautiful white villages, in Spanish known as the Pueblos Blancos. This part of Spain is unique, it is only here that the white villages exists in such abundance.

GrazalemaRonda itself is the largest of the Pueblos Blancos, though in fact Ronda is a city of 40,000 souls, and is the perfect destination from which to explore the white villages. Book a hotel in Ronda and hire a car for the day, then enjoy driving the mountain roads to see villages that could be stuck in time from 1,000 years ago.

The most famous of the white villages are Grazalema, Setenil de las Bodegas, Montejaque, Genalguacil, Benalauria, Zahara de la Sierra, and Arcos de la Frontera. Take a day to drive a from one vilage to the next, stopping to walk and admire the unique features of each village, and definitely make plans to eat lunch in one of the many small traditional tapas bars. Grazalema and Arcos are particular favorites.

As you tour, you'll be astounded by the beauty of each village, and though they all share white limestone walls with each other, they are also quite unique in their own right. Grazalema is the cutest of the white villages and the center of the Grazalema Natural Park, an area of spectacular natural beauty.

Montejaque is a steep hillside village with very narrow streets and little old ladies sitting on wooden chairs outside their houses. Setenil is known for its cave houses down by the river, Arcos sits atop the cliffs with it's church in commanding position to see for miles around. Benalauria offers an annual Moors and Christians battle re-enactment, while Zahara is often voted the village with the most civic pride.

All in all, staying in Ronda and visiting the white villages of central Andalusia is a holiday you'll never forget. Great castles and cathedrals are everywhere in Europe, but cute white villages with traditional ways of life are less common. Come and see them while they hold onto their traditions.

Written by: Andy de Ronda

About the author:

The writer owns Ronda Today, the largest English language website about Ronda and the pueblos blancos.

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Anne said:
19 August 2011 @ 11:02

I think Casares set in the Sierra Bermeja deserves a mention as a virtually unspoilt pueblo blanco.

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