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pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

Bellbrook, Ohio
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pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

We are 7 mature adults who will be staying in a casa near Montejaque(Ronda) for 7 days. we are also spending three nights in Barcelona , two nights in Cordoba , three nights in Madrid and a week near Competa. Our focus is on the week near Montejaque and the pueblos blancos. we are already spending a day in Sevilla and a day in Ronda. We would like to see Jerez de la Frontera(full day with alcazar/horse show and bodegas tour),Arcros de la Frontera, Grazalema,Sahara de la Sierra, Gaucin , Setenil , and possibly Cadiz or Vejer de la frontier. Can anyone recommend which of the villages are best , the amount of time to spend in each and an itinerary to see them in three days. If any other villages are interesting or if we need to eliminate one? We have a car and understand that while the distances are not great the roads are mountainous and slow. we like scenery , photography , history ,seeing different cultures/religions, different foods and shopping.We are taking the bus to Sevilla and possibly Jerez but will drive to the other villages.

Olvera, Spain
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1. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

Hi Robert

I spend four weeks a year in Olvera which is about a 40 minute drive from Ronda. The town is in the north east corner of Cádiz province near where the provinces of Cádiz, Málaga and Sevilla meet. There is a saying that goes "Olvera is a street, a church and a castle, but what a street, what a church and what a castle." There is an iconic church at the top of the town which sits alongside an Arab castle. The castle is accessible and can be climbed right up to the ramparts with stupendous views all around.

Of the other places you mention, Grazalema is very pretty, Setenil de las Bodegas is quite amazing with its houses built into the cliffs on both sides of a lazy little river. Near Setenil is the Roman site of Acinipo which is the remains of an amphitheater. When we visited in October is was closed but it was an easy climb over the fence. It was not so much breaking and entering as accessing the hillside on which it is built. We were not alone in climbing the fence. Zahara de la Sierra is gorgeous with the most amazing views down onto el embalse (reservoir). Gaucín is a pretty little place too and the views as you drive through the Genal Valley outstanding. You must remember, however, that this area of Spain operates siesta time so shops will be closed from 1.00 pm until around 5.30 pm when they re-open until about 8.30 pm. Bars and cafés remain open during the day until about 4.00 pm when they too close and re-open around 7.00 or 7.30 pm. It is also unlikely that you would get a meal in a bar immediately when they re-open in the evening. Most will not serve food until after 8.00 pm.

If you have not yet made your hotel bookings I would be inclined to stay in Sevilla rather than Córdoba and do a day trip to Córdoba by train from Sevilla and if possible increase your stay in Sevilla to three nights. It can easily take three days to see the main places of interest there. I spend a day in Sevilla every October and at this rate it will take me years to see the city but I am quite happy with this pace as I know there will always be another trip.

Saludos. Lindsay

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2. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

I know Montejaque and love the area and try to visit from Arcos de la Frontera whenever I can and in the area. Not long ago I walked from Ronda to Estación de Benaoján-Montejaque to find the train back to Ronda. I would have liked to have had lunch at the Molino del Santo but time was not on my side..maybe next time. Finished up having a splendid light lunch at the station bar ..well not at the station but very close ..of the best Jamon I have ever tasted plus some delicious bread and cheese.

bear in mind that driving from Montejaque does require extra time for the mountain/hill roads with plenty of bends as you say and I think Jerez is doable as a day trip but use the A-374 and then A-384 taking the dual carriageway road by passing Arcos.

the only place which is a bit of a drive on your list is Vejer. I recall the first time I drove from Ronda to Vejer and decided to try the direct road as shown on my old map - this turned out to be a big mistake as it took twice as long as it should have taken through quite deserted but beautiful forests. So a route planner is essential. I tend to stick with Google Maps because they usually provide options. I can also check the landscape of the road using Street View which also helps.

Reaching the villages around Montjaque is of course fine and you have several - you mention Grazalema, Setenil, Zahara de la Sierra and these are good. I always enjoy taking the Palomas Pass road between Grazalema and Zahara.

Consider driving to Ubrique which is where I buy leather goods, last time a fine belt, and you can go via Benaocaz which is a tiny place sitting above the valley with Ubrique at the bottom. A simple place for lunch here is Las Vegas bar which is kind of laid back but good food. Situated opposite the town hall square. Then return via the Cortes de la Frontera road. Relax. Off the road between Ubrique and Cortes you go past the northern end of te fabulous Los Alcornacales natural park with its wild country and cork oaks.

When you go to Setenil try going to the original Ronda at Ronda la Vieja. or Acinipo. (not on a Monday) and walk up to the Roman theatre for the views. You can see why those Romans built a town here.

I like Gaucin a lot especially for the far reaching views over towards the Mediterranean and the Rock of Gibraltar. On the way you can discover other villages.

Olvera, Spain
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3. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

Sorry Robert, another thought. If you are going to Sevilla from Montejaque I would suggest taking the car as far as Montequinto (Condequinto metro station) which is like a park and ride facility. The metro system in and out of Sevilla is excellent. I know that the once a day bus service from Olvera to Sevilla leaves the village at around 6.00 am which to me is silly o'clock but is obviously timed to suit locals who happen to work in Sevilla.

Here is a link which displays many of the local bus services. I see a service from Ronda to Sevilla but not from Montejaque.

turismoderonda.es/informacion/pdf/horarioaut…

Lindsay

Edinburgh, Scotland
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4. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

I would support all the comments above. I am a great fan of Montejaque and just back from another Xmas visit, super village with a good collection of bars, etc. I can really recommend the restaurant La Casita in Montejaque - excellent quality food.

Fantastic panoramic views from Acinipo, well worth a visit; the circuit around Grazalema is fabulous; Benaocaz is a gem; one tip - do not attempt to drive into the old part of Setenil as I did. First and last time! Many of the villages have very narrow streets and by now I should know better but the interior of Setenil really does take the biscuit. Park at far end of village and walk back is the advice but in any case take out the extra insurance on your hire car to protect you from such events.

Olvera, Spain
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5. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

In Setenil I usually park in the little strip before you reach the Friday market area close to the bars/cafés. In Olvera I park three hills and a flat street down from the house on C/- Vereda Ancha, makes for very good leg muscles. I got lost in the villa once and ended up burning the clutch inching along C/- Jesús. Not something I want to repeat. Once met a bus on the mountainous road near Montejaque, won't say how that made me feel.

Lindsay

Malaga, Spain
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6. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

Robert:

Iznajar is a white village along a huge lake formed by a reservoir. It is a hidden gem which few people have been to. It is on the border of Cordoba Province and Malaga Province.

Bellbrook, Ohio
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7. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

i have added olvera, iznajar , acinipo , and benaocaz as destinations. i need another two weeks there. where is the montequinto metro stop in relation to sevilla? i like the idea of not driving into sevilla. i love the parking suggestions for setenil and olevera. we will be in jerez during the horse festival week. we wanted to attend a sherry bodegas and the horseshow. we are looking at bodegas tradition. any suggestions about jerez? thanks for all the great information.rob

Olvera, Spain
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8. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

Hi Robert

Here is a link to the Sevilla metro map, it will work if you copy and paste. You will see that Condequinto is the third station on the line. As an example, if you are going to Plaza de España you would get off at Prado de San Sebastian. When we went into Sevilla last October there was a security guard on duty at the gate who helped me purchase the correct tickets. I have driven in Sevilla but this is very much easier and quicker.

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=sevilla+metro+map&tbm=isch&source=iu&imgil=bWoaS5jIZCiKwM%253A%253Bhttps%253A%252F%252Fencrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com%252Fimages%253Fq%253Dtbn%253AANd9GcTQYVy_vfmNuwWf9DZv1_O53uaXqJkwvM01DAjbslc3Z-ctwcauaQ%253B1400%253B1004%253Blimp1f7lU7-TpM%253Bhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fen.redtransporte.com%25252Fsevilla%25252Fmetro-sevilla%25252Fmap.html&sa=X&ei=J6jPUrS4GaeY1AWi9IH4Cg&sqi=2&ved=0CDMQ9QEwAg&biw=1366&bih=666#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=bWoaS5jIZCiKwM%253A%3Blimp1f7lU7-TpM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fen.redtransporte.com%252Fimg%252Ftransporte%252Fsevilla%252Fmetro-sevilla%252Fplano-metro-sevilla.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fen.redtransporte.com%252Fsevilla%252Fmetro-sevilla%252Fmap.html%3B1400%3B1004

I hope you have a wonderful holiday.

Lindsay

Edited: 10 January 2014, 08:02
London, United...
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9. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

The Metro connection is a great idea when coming from direction of Ronda with a return fare from Condequinto of €3.20 and journey time of about 20 minutes it makes sense.

Get more on

http://www.metro-sevilla.es/en

For Jerez there are several bodegas that could be visited. I have been on the tour organised by "Tradicion" as well as some others like Gonzales Byass (Tio Pepe) and Sandemans (very near Real Escuela). One of my favorites because I always enjoy their sherry is Emilio Lustau. http://www.lustau.es/en/lustau_37.html

However their Bodega is a little off the centre of Jerez on Calle Arcos so really depends on the convenience for Parking as well as other things you plan doing in Jerez.

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10. Re: pueblos blancos of andalucia spain

Jerez - I missed your comment that you would be in Jerez during Feria del Caballo in May. I have been a few times to the Feria and would say that the locals will attend more in the evening and night when the fun fair is open and the party time is right and the electric lights are glowing. In the afternoon you will have fewer people at the fair ground with its large number of "casetas" each sponsored by a company or political party or whatever. You will though have plenty of carriages and horses parading around the show ground at Parque González Hontoria as well as those ladies in traditional flamenco dresses. So perhaps later in afternoon is a good time to visit and mid week perhaps Wednesday is good. As it is Feria week you would need to check with the Bodega of your choice directly to ensure that they are open because sometimes the staff are either sent to man the company caseta or they will reduce the hours of opening. In one corner of the grounds is the large building where horses are brought for breeders to view and discuss sales. Outside this building marked IFECA on the map facing the road Avendia del Ejercito is where the Real Escuela put on a display in a dedicated show ring so this is worth discovering. http://www.jerez.es/especiales/feria/plano/

get more information nearer the time as this is not usually available until the organisers get all their ducks in a row.