Thursday, June 20, 2019

Road Tripping Around Andalusia

From Seville, we drove to Ronda with a stop at Zahara and Setenil. While you can still hit the major cities in Andalusia by bus, it was great to have the freedom to stop in the little mountain towns. 
Zahara de la Sierra

Zahara de la Sierra
About an hour and a half drive from Seville, Zahara offers the remains of a stone castle at the highest point in the town. We parked near the bottom of town and walked up to the castle where you get a great view of Zahara and Rio Guadalete. The castle really consists of one tower which is open to the public without any kind of organized entry since it isn't too popular. We were the only ones exploring when we visited. We spent a total of two hours here between the short hike up, checking out the tower, and heading back to the car.
Setenil de las Bodegas
White houses built into the mountains make up Setenil, a 45 minute drive from Zahara. It's not an overly touristy town, however those who do visit come to see the store fronts built into the rock wall with giant slabs of rock overhead. We ate lunch here at Cafeteria Bar Sol y Sombra which we thought was pretty good and reasonably priced. Between lunch and walking around town we spent a total of 3 hours in Setenil. 

Our last stop of the day was Ronda, a much larger town known for the Puente Nuevo, a gorgeous bridge that connects the two sides of the town. We booked an airbnb a ways out of town because of the price difference and parking situation, but we didn't mind walking 40 minutes into town to see all that Ronda has to offer. Downtown sits high up in comparison to the farmland surrounding it. A short but steep hike will take you down to get a view of the bridge that can only be adequately admired from below. It took us about an hour to go down, take some pictures, and hike back up into town where we feasted at restaurant Santa Maria. In such a touristy town it's hard to find a good restaurant with reasonable prices, but we hit the jackpot at Santa Maria. We still talk about their grilled vegetables with raspberry dipping sauce and black sea salt.

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