Built across a gorge on a sandstone hill, few cities can boast a setting as romantic as Ronda. Overflowing with Andalucian charm, the Spanish city is known for its winding streets filled with whitewashed houses and its breathtaking Puente Nuevo (New Bridge) which connects the city’s two sides across the gorge.
Ronda is often referred to as the birthplace of bullfighting and is home to a majestic 18th-century bullring, the Plaza de Toros. The neoclassical structure is the oldest bullring in Spain and was designed by Martín de Aldehuela, who also designed the New Bridge. If you stroll along the Paseo E Hemingway (Ernest had a long love affair with the city), you can stand on the traditional balconies that hang over the edge of the Tajo gorge. Elements of Ronda’s Islamic origins can be seen at the Arabic bathhouses just outside the city walls, and Mondragón Palace which housed the former ruler Abbell Mallek.
One of the best ways to blend in with the Ronda locals is to share their enthusiasm for food. Many bars and restaurants serve the regional speciality of chorizo rondeño – a spicy sausage infused with paprika and accompanied by crusty bread and crispy fries. You can also sample Arabic-inspired offerings such as pestiños (honey fritters) and other sweet treats like the yemas del Tajo (candied egg yolks) and rosquillas (donuts).