Andalucia is pulsating, hot and exciting. Rich in history and friendly people, it truly is the perfect opportunity for a seamless fusion of the traditional Spanish way of life and modern tourism. Read on about Andalucia in our Part II, featuring Malaga, Ronda, Cádiz and the beautiful Pueblos Blancos that are scattered amongst them.
The birthplace of Pablo Picasso, Malaga is the capital of Costa del Sol. The opening of a major Picasso museum in 2003 helped transform Malaga from pit stop to cultural destination. Tradition mixes with modernity here, so that residents and visitors can enjoy a wide range of activities at any time of the year. This location’s main tourist attraction is the Gibralfaro Castle. This historic building offers a stunning introduction to the city’s skyline, a perfect sunset stop. The Manquita is Malaga’s Cathedral and it was founded in the 15th century on top of a mosque. Its nickname is “one armed woman” because the southern tower was never finished. Also, try the grilled sardines in El Palo, the old fishing district!
While Malaga is the capital of Costa del Sol, Cádiz is the capital of Costa de la Luz. This city is generally considered to be the oldest continuously inhabited settlement in Western Europe, founded by the Phoenicians in about 1100 BC. Cádiz is made up of four quarters, the home of the cathedral, the medieval settlement, the old Roma and Flamenco quarter, and the fishing quarter. The two landmarks that dominate the city are the Cádiz Cathedral and the Parador Hotel Atlantico. Be sure to explore the Mercado Central where a staggering amount of delicious seafood stands are located. Overall it is a historic, quaint, and charming city!
The town of Ronda lies up a winding mountain road from Marbella at an altitude of 739m. It is one of the most visited towns in Andalucia. Ronda’s important sights include one of the oldest bullrings in Spain, the Puente Nuevo, as well as the Paseo Blas Infante, can be seen within a few hours with a walking tour of the town. In 1751 the Puente Nuevo was built over a 100m deep gorge, taking almost 42 years to complete. The bridge connects the old Moorish town to the El Mercadillo, the more recent urban section.
The fantastic Pueblos Blancos, the white villages, are a series of towns and large villages in the northern part of the provinces of Cádiz and Malaga in Andalucia. Hundreds of years ago, the villages decided to whitewash the walls of their homes with the combination of lime, water and sand to protect their houses from the sun and to rejuvenate the interior. The most notable villages include Frigiliana, Gaucín,Casares, Mijas, and Ronda. One of the most unique villages is Júzcar as it used to be a white village until it was painted in 2011. Its 175 buildings were painted "Smurf Blue" for the promotion of the 2011 3-D film, “The Smurfs.”
Journey to all corners of Andalucia with us to discover extraordinary destinations, excellent accommodations and superb gastronomy!