Exploring Ronda, Andalusia – Spain

Planning a visit to Ronda? You’re in for a treat.

Ronda offers a wealth of experiences, historic buildings, breath-taking views and plenty to do to keep you busy for a full week.

I spent an extended weekend in Ronda in the middle of the summer and even the heat didn’t stop me from ticking off most on the list.

The city was noticeably lot less busy than what a normal summer would look like, which was the perfect excuse to see all the popular places without the crowds.

Here is a little taste of the highlights that Ronda has to offer – with my favourite bits and few tips to help you with planning your trip.

I will follow this up shortly with a more detailed guide on how to spend your time in Ronda, best hotels, restaurants and much more, so check in here later to read more.

Plaza Del Toros in Ronda

I found a hotel right next to Puente Nuevo (check it in this blog post), so the main sight was always a view away, any time of the day. My next steps followed to Plaza del Toros, which is one of the oldest ones in the country.

Its a stunning and well preserved building – even though bullfights here are a rare sight these days, they still use the building for other events like Flamenco nights. As part of the tour you can also see the Royal Stables and the ‘backstage’ of the bull ring.

There is an extensive museum dedicated to the history of bull fighting and of course you will also see the main ring itself.

The entry to the bull ring is just behind this corner
Small part of the museum
Beautiful building from inside, complete with the worn off interior from the fights

Gardens & Squares in Ronda

If you glance at the map of Ronda, you will discover lots of green spaces. Most of them stretch along the Puente Nuevo.

The main park is where you find stunning views of the valley, and the best place to take in all the beauty is at the designated viewing platform (Mirador de Ronda).

On the other side of the bridge, you will find cascading gardens that descend all the way down to Puento Viejo, a less known sibling of Puento Nuevo.

The gardens (Jardines de Cuenca – marked on map here) are a real treat especially in early morning if you catch the sunrise (which in summer is around 7-8am).

Roman Baths

I have marked Roman Baths on the map (location here), but a brief glance through the fence satisfied my inner tourist and I ended up exploring the area around it.

You can see the outdoor part of the baths just by walking around it and there is only a small part that’s actually hosted in a building.

The area around the baths is really beautiful, just like this house that was next door. Behind it was a little farm with horses and a tiny restaurant tucked in a corner. This was one of the most peaceful parts of the city.

Puente Nuevo

You can’t go to Ronda and miss Puente Nuevo. This 18th century bridge complete with guardhouse is a real beauty, and best of all – it can be admired from lots of different spots in the city.

We had the best views in our hotel – Don Miguel – which has terraces right under the bridge and you can enjoy the stunning views without having to squeeze in a crowd with tourists.

There is a little pathway down the valley that takes you to a viewing point called Mirador Puente Nuevo de Ronda (marked on map here), from where you can admire the bridge from below and take pretty awesome pictures – I didn’t make it there because 35C wasn’t an ideal weather for a hike.

There is also a cute local tapas bar right at the edge of the bridge where you can enjoy tasty tapas with amazing views of the bright (place called Tabanco Los Archos – marked on map here).

Hotel Don Miguel – white building on the right side of Puente Nuevo
Puente Nuevo views from Casa don Bosco

Casa Don Bosco

Casa don Bosco was an unexpected find (thanks Google maps) – it’s actually an art museum hosted in a historic old home.

The home itself is beautiful, a traditional Andalusian style complete with antique furniture and creaking floors.

But that’s nothing compared to the gardens – judge yourself!

Only when I got home I discovered they actually do art shows and you can also book your accommodation and stay for a sleep over. During my visit, the house was open after covid closures, so the facilities were limited.

I will follow up with a more detailed post about this gorgeous place.

Main fountain in Casa don Bosco
Garden views towards the main house
After Casa Don Bosco you will find a small garden with these gorgeous flowers and views

Restaurants in Ronda

Finding a good place to eat in Ronda was a bit of a trial and error.

There are a lot of tourist traps and we certainly got our share of that (more on that in different post).

Some of my favourite places with very good food included:

  • Restaurant Santa Pola – the food was pretty good (nothing amazing or extremely creative), but the views were certainly something that elevated the dining experience – see below
  • Tragata Restaurant – this was a recommendation from the hotel staff and it was the best tapas we had on the trip. Its very popular so a reservation is necessary.
  • Restaurante Pedro Romero – we went here as it was mentioned in every single guide. The food was decent, I wouldn’t say anything amazing. The restaurant is opposite the bullring, so the theme was beautifully reflected in the interior, it had a lot of old-fashioned charm. Best for those who like their meat and want to try the local specialty – oxtail.
Restaurante Santa Pola
Views from Restaurante Santa Pola

Valley Views & Sunsets

My favourite part of Ronda were definitely the views, especially the valley.

The best views were from the park I mentioned earlier, the gardens and Puento Nuevo.

For the best photos, you can catch a sunrise in the Jardines de Cuenca as sun rises just behind them and for sunset head to the Mirador de Ronda which is the perfect viewing spot.

Near Ronda – Setenil De Las Bodegas

If you’ve got half afternoon spare, a short drive away will take you to the village of Setenil de las Bodegas, famous for the dramatic cliffs hanging over restaurants and bars.

Its a very small place so you won’t need more than couple of hours.

A word of warning – it’s very small and it does get busy even in low season, be prepared for crowds.

The smaller street with cliffs in Senetil de las Bodegas
Main and most known street in the village – beware the restaurants are a bit of a tourist trap here

I hope you enjoyed this quick tour and if you’ve visited Ronda already, let me know which bits you like the most in comments!

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