Located next to Malaga, Ronda is the perfect destination for tourists, curious to see a typical white village of southern Spain. But why is the city so famous? We bring you an answer with the best things to do in Ronda Spain.
1. Best things to do in Ronda Spain: exploring the arena
The city is known for its bullring. Built-in 1785, it’s one of the oldest bullrings in Spain! Indeed, the city has played an important role in the birth of bullfighting. The arena can, in theory, still accommodate 5000 spectators. Moreover, one of the greatest toreros has used this place as school benches for the institution he founded: the bullfighting school of Ronda.
The arena is open for visits. Tourists also have the opportunity to see the toreros museum, also located inside the monument.
Starting to explore the city with the arena can be a wise choice. In fact, the tourist office is located right next door, allowing you to get personalized advice for your day trip to the city. The arena is located in Plaza de Toros de Ronda, which is also known for its impressive bronze statue. After the plaza, you can walk in beautiful gardens, from where you will admire the city’s views.
2. Be amazed by the landscapes of Ronda
One of the best things to do in Ronda Spain is definitely to enjoy the views! Indeed, the uniqueness of the city comes from its location. Ronda is on a rocky promontory, formed over hundreds of years by the ancient river Guadalevin. It’s lost in the middle of the mountains and very beautiful to see. But if we speak little, let’s speak well. We’re going to advise you on the best spots to admire this landscape.
After going to the arena, take the Paseo Blas Infante. This path goes along the cliff, offering you a beautiful view of the surroundings. This path has a dead end, so turn back to go to the most spectacular spot in the city: the Mirador de Ronda!
3. Scaring yourself on Ronda Bridge
This is the construction that characterizes Ronda the most. It’s on all the postcards, and everyone wants to cross it. The Puente Nuevo connects the old and the new city, separated by the El Tajo gorge. It took 42 years to build this aqueduct of 100 meters high! On the left side of Ronda Bridge is another spot, the mirador de Aldehuela. This point offers you another perspective of the valleys that surround the city.
If this view is not enough for you, you can still go deeper into the cliffs. To do this, reach the Plaza de María Auxiliadora. From there, a small path will take you to a lower spot. Be careful where you step though, this roadway isn’t very safe. It has happened too often that people lose their belongings in the depths of El Tajo gorge. You can continue your descent and enjoy the waterfall and river torrent at the second viewpoint. From this point, you are free to descend more but the landscape will become less interesting. But don’t forget that you will have to face the ascent! So caps and water bottles are essential items to have in your bag!
4. Best things to do in Ronda Spain: visiting the Mondragón palace
It was once the main residence of Queen Isabel and her companion King Ferdinand. Lost in the old city, this space has now been converted into a museum. The Mondragón Palace charms tourists with its gardens and architecture, mixing Moorish and Renaissance styles.
The place now houses a unique collection, which traces the history of the city. You can see pieces of ancient Roman and Arab tombs. So, this is one of the best things to do in Ronda Spain for history lovers.
5. Wandering in Plaza Duquesa de Parcent
Next to the palace, a charming little square is located: the Plaza Duquesa de Parcent. It’s considered the most picturesque place in the city! This is where the city hall stands, next to the Iglesia of Santa Maria la Mayor. It took 200 years to build this place of prayer. We advise you to go and have a look at it! You will be surprised by the place, which has a gothic and renaissance style but also has baroque elements.
6. Entering into the universe of criminals with the thieves’ museum
There are many cool museums in the city, but the Bandits Museum is the most original. It’s one of the best things to do in Ronda Spain and is located next to the Plaza Duquesa. Inside, you will discover the history of the greatest “banderos” of Spain. The museum is well documented and offers anecdotes for each famous character. You will know all the nuances of their life. Indeed, some gave the money they stole to the poorest while killing without mercy. They were criminals, toreros, and even sometimes flamenco singers!
7. Stop one moment in front of la Puerta de Almocábar
If you continue along Calle Armiñán and Calle Cuesta de las Imágenes, you will be face to face with the Puerta de Almocábar. This gate, as well as the walls that surround it, are remnants of a past era, when Ronda was considered an impregnable fortress, during the Islamic occupation.
In that same period, the Puerta de Almocábar was the main entrance to Ronda. This is the largest part of the fortress that remains intact, but there are other constructions in the city that are also remains of the wall. Indeed, to the east stands the Cijara Gate, and to the west are the walls of the Albacara, which at the time protected the city’s mills.
8. Give yourself a break in the Arab baths of Ronda
In the San Miguel neighborhood is a place appreciated by locals and tourists alike: the Arab Baths. What could be better after a descent into El Tajo gorge, than to relax in hot water? This experience is unique because they are the most preserved baths in Spain. The area was built in the late 13th century. Yet the bath system has remained the same: enter a cold pool and move into increasingly hot baths.
While you are splashing in the water, if you look up, you can observe an interesting architectural element. Indeed, the ceiling is dotted with holes, which makes the room bright. This particular aspect was inspired by the Alhambra baths in Granada.
9. Best things to do in Ronda Spain: visiting la Plaza del Socorro
To finish this little trip in beauty, why not stop at the Plaza del Socorro? It’s the perfect place to have a drink or a bite to eat. Besides, the facade of the Iglesia Nuestra Señora del Socorro is worth the look and embellishes the plaza.
10. Going to the Sentenil de Las Bodegas
Located 30 minutes away by car, this small village is unique in its kind. The houses were built directly in the rock, and the result is destabilizing.
To admire this man-made intervention to nature, we advise you to walk in calle Cuevas del Sol, cuevas de la Sombra and calle Herreria. This visit shouldn’t take you more than 2 hours.
So Ronda is full of surprises. The best way to appreciate this city is to wander around its narrow street and enjoy the panoramic view. The next step of your southern Spain trip could then be Malaga and its beaches…