Part 19: Ronda to Seville


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The Trip

We had a great night in Ronda.  It rained overnight, but not a lot.  But, the cobblestone streets were damp and slippery.  We had breakfast at the hotel and then did a short hike around town to see what was there.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

A put on my wide angle lens to get this shot of the bridge at Ronda.

Across the street was the Parador, which was our first choice, but full booked.

The main square in Ronda.

The main fountain in the square.  There was some fellow there doing an interview.  We were not close enough to hear the talk-track, so we just walked on.

Another street packed with tourists.

We walked down the street to a public view point and got this view of the Ronda bridge.

The view point on the opposite side of the canyon was packed with tourists.

Our hotel, the Don Miguel, is to the right of the bridge.

The city of Ronda built the walkways on the canyon rim.

From the view point we could see the green fields to the east.

The public area had a substantial bed of roses that were in bloom.  The early morning rains had left dew on the flowers.

In the clear sunshine, the color of the roses was strong.  We returned to the hotel to get access to our rental car.  The hotel staff had parked the car in their "private lot" which was really the basement of a building down the street.  Since the bellman had parked the car, I assumed that he would go and get it for me.  Wrong.  I was given my keys and a cursory set of instructions for finding the car.  I walked past the entrance to the car park the first time as it was unmarked.  I finally realized that the open door was likely the parking area although I could not see the car.  When I went inside the building, I discovered that the car had been parked in a narrow area with less than 2" between the driver's door and the wall.  The passenger door was perhaps 5" but not enough to open to allow entry into the car.  How the fellow that parked the car left the vehicle is unclear, but what IS clear is that I had to enter through the rear passenger door and weasel my way over the seat into the front.  Then, getting out of the garage was a challenge.  The pillars that held up the floor above the garage were irregularly spaced requiring a many-point turn to weave my way through them.  Once on the surface streets, the challenge was working through the  crowded one-way streets.  My only possible egress required going into a pay parking garage and exiting on the far side.  Many turns later, I was back at the hotel.  Our rental is an Opel Astra, which is a 4-door mini-station wagon with front wheel drive.  The turning radius sucks, so driving that car through tight streets is "tight jaws".

We traveled north from Ronda toward some Roman ruins.  Along the way we went through a small town that supposedly had homes built in tunnels carved into the volcanic tufa.  We did not see those homes, but from a viewpoint over this small town, we got a quaint view of the Spanish countryside.

It is possible that the "houses under overhanging cliffs" listed in the tour books are the places next to the cliff face.  From the overlook of the town, we continued on to a more remote area that had a set of Roman ruins.

The ruins were high on a hill and from the parking area we had a commanding view of the countryside.  Sadly, we determined that the ruins were closed, so we decided to just look at the local sights.

Close by was a huge blooming plant, possibly Flowering Anise.

The wild flowers were in full bloom and there were many species to see.

The small purple flowers were everywhere.

There were several red blooms that were quite interesting.  Note the birthday cake structure in the center of the flower.

A different purple thistle-like thing.

There was another specimen of the red flower, in a somewhat better shape.

We were actually getting ready to depart when this English woman came up to us and told us that we could just hop the fence and go up the hill -- they did.  So, we hopped the fence and went up the hill.  Each pile of stones was something that collapsed.

We continued hiking up the hill until we were near the top and came upon the theater.  This was a large structure.  Note Kathleen at the bottom left.

From the uphill side, you could see the stage and the circular seating.

Through the center portal looking east, you could see the cultivated fields of grapes and olive trees on the distant hills.

We continued climbing to the top of the ridge and were rewarded with a stunning view of the valley to the west of the ruin.

To the northwest, the terrain was similar.  The road we needed to travel was visible.

Zooming in to the west, we could see a small town at the foot of the distant mountains.  I am sure it is a small, but nice, nice place.

Ronda was much more than we expected.  Kathleen did a great job getting us rooms with an outstanding view.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2017, all rights reserved.
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