Ronda the city of dreams

ronda-arch

By Clive Muir

Ronda is one of Spain’s most visited cities. It is a small city famous for the impressive Puente Nuevo (new bridge) that spans the gorge that separates the old town from the new town. The Real Maestranza bullring is one of the oldest in Spain and is where modern bullfighting was conceived. You will find many beautiful churches, museums, wonderful coffee shops and tapas bars, all within a short 30 minute walk.

bullring-ronda

The city is blessed with some of Spain’s most impressive nature and historic monuments, several of its hotels offer views of the Tajo gorge from their windows, or views of the mountains surrounding the city. As one of the most visited cities in Spain, Ronda has a fantastic selection of hotels, hostels, guesthouses, and self-catered accommodations guaranteed to suit all tastes. Our four star hotels include the Parador, Molino del Arco, Reina Victoria, Montelirio, Maestranza, Acinipo, Don Benito, and Hotel San Gabriel.

When you visit Ronda you join great names like Orson Welles, Earnest Hemingway, Rainer Rilke, James Joyce, Jorge Luis Borges, Madonna and Jamie Oliver who have enjoyed their time in Ronda.

Ronda-parador

Ronda is the most important city in the northern Malaga province, and also the closest city to many of the smaller villages in the Cadiz province, making Ronda an ideal base for exploring the region of Serrania and other Andalucian cities such as Sevilla, Granada, Córdoba, Jerez de la Frontera, Cadiz, Antequera, or Malaga.

Serranía de Ronda

Within a few kilometres of Ronda are some of the most visited Pueblos Blancos, the famous white villages, located in Andalucia, Setenil de las Bodegas, Grazalema, Gaucín, Juzcar, Benalauria, Montejaque, Teba, Cortes de la Frontera, Igualeja, etc.

church-merced

Ronda is also very close to three protected natural parks, the Sierra de Grazalema, Los Alcornocales and the Sierra de las Nieves. The Serranía is also home to pre-historic cave paintings at Benaojan, Neolithic dolmens at Montecorto, and of course, the Roman city of Acinipo.

The countryside of the Serranía is unique and universally important. Many endemic species make their home there. For example, the Abies pinsapo (the Spanish fir tree), the last examples of these fir trees, is a living fossil that grew in the Tertiary period and still exist in the Serranía today.

There are more than 30 different species of orchids that flower in the Serranía, beginning in January, with most peaking during the spring. Many can be easily seen at the road and path sides.

The Mediterranean scrub consists mainly of wild Olive, Retama, Lentisc, Phlomis, Quercus coccifera, Genista, Oleander, Rhamnus and Cistus. Woods and forests are made up of pine trees and evergreen oaks including the important cork oak Quercus suber.

Large soaring birds, if seen in a group, are likely to be Griffon vultures. There is a large breeding colony in Garganta Verde. You can also see a variety of eagles including Booted, Short-toed, Bonelli’s and Golden eagles. There are also several Egyptian vultures breeding in the park. Other birds to look out for are Red billed chough, Lesser kestrel, Hoopoe, Bee-eater, Black-wheatear, Blue rock thrush, Rock thrush and Woodchat shrike.

Mammals are mainly nocturnal but wild mountain goats can be seen on mountain walks. (Often near the roads in colder months.) Red deer, Fox, Hare Egyptian mongoose, Stone martin, Genet and Wild Boar are more difficult to see.

birds-little-owl

There are around 80 butterflies on the wing during the summer months and the Two–tailed pasha, Cardinal, Cleopatra, Spanish Swallowtail, Large Tortoiseshell and Marsh fritillary are some of the largest and more easily seen.

For more information about Ronda and the Sierra de Grazalema please take a look at

www.rondatoday.com and www.wildsideholidays.com

 

Photos from www.rondatoday.com

This entry was posted by Ruben on July 8th, 2014, and is filed under Contributors,Spain. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.
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