It is not unusual for people who travel to develop deep emotional attachments to the places that they travel to. This has happened to me multiple times through the years, and it is never easier to leave the place once my heart has grown truly fond of it.
When it comes to Southern Spain, there are three places that come to our mind that we will never forget and will always want to go back to again. Although you go there multiple times, you can never get tired of their beauty, charm, and lovely atmosphere and you will always find some reasons to go to Southern Spain.
So here I’m going to share with you three of my favourite Spanish cities. All three are within a relatively close distance that is doable either by car or public transport. If you plan to hit all three in one road trip, take a look at these tips on making your car travel successfully.
The pride and joy of southern Spain, this beautiful city is filled with the ancient influences of the Moors and the Arabs. Its famed palace, the Alhambra, was the last stronghold of the Moors in Spain before they were defeated.
The Alhambra itself is an incredibly beautiful and intricately sculpted building that is absolutely worth it to go see. If you’re traveling on a budget and don’t have the funds to get inside, you can still see the exterior from the gardens of the Generalife that are up above.
Walking downwards from the Alhambra, you’ll wander through a forest-like garden area that eventually leads through the Pomegranate (Granada) Arch and into a lovely walking street filled with small shops. Continue downwards and you’ll hit the Plaza Nueva, a lovely plaza with ancient architecture and delicious food. Turn right up the Paseo de Los Tristes and following the river to get an incredible view of the Alhambra from below. Head upwards from either point and make your way into the Albaicin, a beautiful winding neighbourhood with a deep Muslim influence. Through the winding streets behind the Plaza Nueva, find the Arabian market, a street lined with Arabic trinkets and tea shops that will make you think you’ve landed in Morocco.
When the sun is setting, make your way to the Mirador San Nicolas to see a beautiful view of the Alhambra as it towers above the city below with the sun setting behind.
This incredible town is built on the precipice of a cliff and thus offers incredible views on both sides down into the valley below. The sights in Ronda are best taken in on foot, as this offers the most freedom of movement. Traverse the bridges that span the history of this small town, starting with the ‘New Bridge’ (built in the late 1700’s), the ‘Old Bridge’ down below, and the ‘Roman Bridge’.
For the adventurous of spirit, there are many trails that lead down into the valley below. An abandoned mine makes for an interesting excursion, and walk down its nearly 300 steps to an incredible blue-green pool nestled in a ravine with the Tajo rising above. At the top of the mine there are some beautifully kept gardens (along with a friendly peacock) and more stunning views.
Sevilla has a lot of great sightseeing spots. The Plaza de España features a lovely moat which you can row around in a swan boat, and beautiful towers and mosaics all dedicated to different areas in Spain. Next door is the rambling Parque de Maria Luisa, a lovely place to relax and take in a breath of fresh, green air. Just these two sights, if seen in their entirety, could take an entire day or more.
The Cathedral is an awe-inspiring must-see. Its sheer size (being one of the largest Christian churches in the world) and incredible Gothic design and architecture will take your breath away. In the northeast corner of the cathedral is the Tower of Giralda. Climb up the circling inclined plane (built to allow horse chariots to climb to the top) and get an unforgettable view of the city.
Time fails me, but I urge you to take a look at the incredibly beautiful Alcazar and gardens, the many different museums. Also, you can take a stroll along the enchanting Guadalquivir before you even think of leaving this charming city.
Well, it’s time to fall in love! Pack your bags and head to one or all of these delightful cities. You won’t regret it!