After our jaunt around the glorious town of Ronda, Spain, we wanted to stop in a small village on our way back to Seville. We had several suggestions from acquaintances and the internet, but I decided to just ask a local before we left Ronda.
And that local told us we should check out the pueblo blanco – white village – of Zahara de la Sierra.
Perched up on a mountain overlooking a reservoir, we’d actually seen the village on our way to Ronda and thought it looked quite marvelous. I guess the recommendation was meant to be.
It’s immediately easy to see why this was originally a Moorish outpost back in the day. It’s a major high point overlooking the valley and the surrounding mountains. The perfect place to see who’s coming – friend or foe – and to be sure you’re prepared to take on whoever might dare cross your path.
It was recaptured in the 15th century, and from there made its way into the hands of the Spanish.
There’s an old castle atop the town, and even though the town sits way above the valley floor, the castle is perched upon a rock that requires one to make a serious hike to get up to it.
I think one of our fitness trackers said we climbed 42 stories or something. I’m not so sure it’s that high. But, man, it is up there.
While the castle is kept in good shape, it’s not yet been turned into a big tourist site. In fact, you can just walk on in, climb up and down, and stand atop it forever, gazing out over the mountains.
Eventually, we climbed about on the rocks and pathways that surround the castle before making our descent.
Before we could head down, the sun started to set over the mountains, which was quite a sight after trekking around all day.
From there, we made our way down to town and had a walk around, before finding a place to sit for a well-deserved drink.
While this pueblo is very small, it appears it’s sort of a stopover or maybe even a destination for those passing through, even all these centuries after it was just an outpost. There’s a lot of outdoor recreation around here, which is evident just by looking in any direction from the village.
I think we could have spent a bit more time here, exploring some of the back streets and, of course, eating some local fare. It was a quiet eve in Zahara de la Sierra, though; and after a long day exploring both it and Ronda, it was time to make our way back to Seville.
If you’re looking for a white village to visit, or just want to stop off in a pretty town for a bit, we highly recommend you check it out.
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Have you ever been to Zahara de la Sierra? If so, what’d you think? If not, what say ye? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!