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“Unbelivable Beauty”

Iglesia de Santa Maria la Mayor
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US$85.70*
and up
Ronda Historical Walking Tour with Bullring Entrance
Ranked #16 of 86 things to do in Ronda
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities
Anderson, South Carolina
Level Contributor
51 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Unbelivable Beauty”
Reviewed 19 March 2014

The church is in the old part of Ronda and the interior is one of the most beautiful I have seen. The detail in the wood carvings in the altars is outstanding. The Church is not large but is well worth the 4 euros to see. In addition the surrounding area is easy to walk and to take in the stunning views of the gorge that separates the new city from the old.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Chuck G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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208 reviews from our community

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Harlow, Essex
Level Contributor
80 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“My House shall be called a House of Prayer .....”
Reviewed 31 January 2014

As a practising Christian, i really feel that entry to a church should be free and dependent on freely given offerings. i would probably have left more that the entry fee, but I will NOT pay to go into churches. It is a hideous practice and should be stopped immediately.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank FredandMouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Peterborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
55 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
“Really lovely square and church”
Reviewed 22 January 2014

We came for the day and saw the peunte neuvi bridge and did the walk turista inglesa suggests for the Tajo, which was great, and then just visited the Palace Mondragon and this church which is just round the corner from the palace. This made a perfect day in Ronda, well a long morning really followed by lunch. The square was really sweet with the trees and the little bar for a coffee, and the church was quite wonderful inside and very interesting outside.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Carmen K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Estepona, Spain
Level Contributor
559 reviews
246 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1,661 helpful votes
“Curious outside, stunning inside”
Reviewed 20 January 2014

.

This church, the most important one in Ronda, is well worth a visit.

It is a stone's throw from the Palacio Mondragon - just turn right when you leave the Palace, follow the little street, and you'll get there.

It is in an attractive square named after the Duquesa de Parcent - shady with somewhere to sit and have a drink and a few tapas. When you are standing facing the church, the building at right angles on your left is a nunnery, a real-live nunnery where there are still nuns living and praying. The building at right angles on your right, with the colonnades, is the Ayuntamiento - Town Hall. It usually has police cars parked outside.

But now stand and stare at the church itself.

The first thing that strikes you is that it has balconies. A church with balconies? I do wonder if this is also the living quarters for the priests, because on occasion you see bedding spread out over the balcony railings to air. Not normal to see that in a church.

The next thing is the tower. The bottom part - i.e. excluding the "wedding cake" later addition on the top - is a minaret. Let's not forget that Ronda was conquered by the Arabs in 713, and only re-conquered by Isabel and Fernando in 1485, so it had more than 750 years of Muslim rule, and of course of Islam.

In fact, the basic structure of the whole church is a mosque, although it has been subject to "home improvements" over the centuries. Inside the only relic of its Islamic past is the handsome Mihrab, the arch indicating to the faithful the direction of Mecca. You can see this in one of my photos.

The remainder of the inside is a riot of Christian colour and gold leaf. Quite splendid, both the main altar and retablo and the side chapels.

.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank Turista-Inglesa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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