White cities – Ronda
Ernest Hemingway wrote that there is only one place in Spain, where one should spend a honeymoon. Ronda. The whole city, as far as the eye can see, is nothing more than a romantic live theatre.
Hemingway’s relationship to Spain was more than that of the casual tourist or even of the detached observer. He wholeheartedly cherished everything about Spanish culture and lifestyle.
Is it really possible that the city can attract the attention of 35,000 tourists from the farthest regions of the world?
Ronda is one of the dozens of Andalusian white towns where the history dates back to the Arab times. Traces of the Arab past can be seen at every step. The snow-white buildings of the town rise on both sides of the 120-meter ravine.
The Puente Nuevo stone bridge joins the walls of the cliffs, connecting the old and newer parts of the city. It was created after the conquest of the Arab settlement during the reconquest.
The courtyard of the Mondragón Palace is surrounded by arcades in the shape of a horseshoe.
You could stay longer in the Casa del Rey Moro, or the King’s Moorish House. There are 365 steps of the underground corridor that will lead you to the bottom of the canyon.
The corridor was to allow the supply of water from the river during the siege. The daughters of Arab rulers who could take a bath away from the curious eyes also benefited from the secret descent.
Ronda is the heart of strictly Spanish traditions. Plaza de Toros is the oldest bullring in Spain and is the cradle of contemporary art of bullfighting. Originating from the town of Francisco Romero, he established a code of rules that is still valid today. His grandson Pedro became one of the most famous toreros in history. To this day, in the first days of September, the famous Corrida Goyesca takes place in Ronda. The participants fight in costumes stylised in the nineteenth century. The costumes are designed by the largest fashion houses.
It seems that after the visit in Ronda nothing will surprise you, but when you finally stand on the tower, you will probably not be able to catch your breath; you might feel a bit of tiredness, but above all delight. White walls and red roofs, olive green hills, and at the very bottom of the lake is an unusual landscape of Andalusia, quite different from the noisy resorts of the coast.