RondaDay Trips

A trip to Ronda: 10 things to see and what to do

A trip to ronda

Ronda is a beautiful city in Andalusia with amazing views, interesting history and beautiful old buildings. It loacated high above a deep canyon and mixes natural beauty with important history making it a great place to visit.

You will get to see many beautiful views but also find that it has an interesting history.

It works great as a day trip but you can also stay a night or two if you want to explore everything in more detail.

What Makes Ronda Stand Out?

Ronda’s unique position atop the El Tajo gorge provides unmatched views of the Andalusian countryside. More than just scenic landscapes this city is a melting pot of history and culture. The Puente Nuevo, a stone bridge spanning the gorge, bridges Ronda’s historical and modern parts showcasing the diverse civilizations that have inhabited it.

Reasons to Visit Ronda

A visit to Ronda is like stepping back in time. With a well-preserved old town, historical monuments and Spain’s oldest bullring Ronda offers an experience into Andalusian culture and history. The city is also perfect for hiking enthusiasts with trails offering views of the Sierra de las Nieves and Grazalema natural parks.

Ronda’s Historical Background

Ronda’s layered history with human settlement dating back to the Neolithic age has seen it flourish under Roman, Islamic, and Christian rule.

Imagine what that city has experienced through history.

Each era has contributed to the city’s cultural and architectural richness with many of Ronda’s buildings hailing from these periods. Ronda is more than a city; it’s a window into the soul of Andalusia inviting travelers to experience its ancient streets and timeless beauty.

So, if you want to visit Ronda, what should you see and do? Here we list some must-sees that you definitely should check out.

1. Puente Nuevo (New Bridge)

Puente Nuevo in Ronda

This architectural marvel spans the deep chasm that divides the city of Ronda, offering majestic views of the El Tajo gorge below. Constructed in the 18th century, it took over four decades to complete. The bridge is not only a testament to engineering prowess but also serves as a gateway between Ronda’s old and new towns, symbolizing the city’s rich history and cultural fusion.

2. Plaza de Toros

Regarded as the birthplace of modern bullfighting, Ronda’s Plaza de Toros holds a special place in Spanish bullfighting history. Built in the late 18th century, the bullring is characterized by its classical sandstone architecture. It’s now part museum, part bullring, offering visitors a deep dive into the traditions and ethics of bullfighting through its well-curated exhibits.

3. Baños Árabes (Arab Baths)


arab baths

 Hidden away in Ronda’s old quarter these well-preserved baths date back to the 13th and 14th centuries. They reflect the Islamic practice of public bathing inspired by Roman traditions. The hydraulic system used to heat the water in the baths is still visible, showing the advanced engineering skills of the era.

4. Palacio de Mondragón

Often referred to as the most beautiful building in Ronda, the Palacio de Mondragón was once the residence of Moorish kings and later Spanish nobility. Its architecture is a mix of Moorish, Gothic and Renaissance styles with stunning gardens and courtyards that overlook the gorge.

The palace also houses the municipal museum, which charts Ronda’s history through archaeological exhibits.

5. La Casa del Rey Moro

Despite its name suggesting a Moorish king’s dwelling, the house was actually built in the 18th century. The real attraction here is the Water Mine and the gardens designed by Jean Claude Forestier.

The mine is a stairway that leads down to the river at the bottom of the gorge originally used for water supply during sieges.

6. El Tajo Gorge

The gorge itself, carved by the Guadalevín River, is a natural wonder that offers spectacular views from various points around the city. Several trails and viewpoints such as the Mirador de Ronda allow visitors to appreciate its grandeur and the engineering marvel of Puente Nuevo that spans it.

7. La Ciudad (The Old Town in Ronda)

Old street in Ronda

Ronda’s old town is a charming area with cobbled streets, historic buildings and hidden plazas. It’s a place where you can feel the layers of history, from the Roman and Arab periods to the modern era, all intertwined in its architecture and atmosphere.

8. Iglesia de Santa María la Mayor

Initially a mosque this church was converted into a Christian place of worship following the Reconquista. It showcases a blend of architectural styles with its stunning altar and intricately decorated interior reflecting its diverse historical influences.

9. Acinipo (Ronda la Vieja):

A short drive from Ronda the ruins of Acinipo shows the remains of an ancient Roman settlement known as “Ronda la Vieja” – Old Ronda. The site includes a preserved Roman theater and offers insights into the life of its inhabitants over 2,000 years ago.

10. Jardines de Cuenca (Cuenca Gardens)

Situated on the ledges of the Tajo gorge these terraced gardens offer breathtaking views of Ronda and the surrounding countryside. The gardens are named after Ronda’s twin town, Cuenca, and provide a peaceful retreat.

Where is ronda located?

Ronda is located in the province of Málaga, within the autonomous community of Andalusia, southern Spain. It sits in a mountainous area approximately 100 kilometers west of the city of Málaga. Positioned atop a deep gorge, Ronda is renowned for its dramatic views and historical significance in the region.

If you’re traveling from Marbella or nearby cities, you can do it as a day trip. Read more about it here.

How much time should you spend in Ronda?

Ronda is great for a day trip if you’re coming from Málaga, Marbella or other nearby cities. You can manage to see all the sights in one day but it’s also nice to stay a night or two and really take your time to check out the sights, eat, enjoy and socialize.

Visit Ronda with kids?

If the kids are young and not interested in history they might not find it very exciting. Generally, there isn’t much specifically for children and there’s a lot of walking involved so older children might appreciate it more.

Take your time and go to Ronda

If you have a day or two to spare, definitely go to Ronda. We had a very nice time there on our trip. Attractions, history, many restaurants, and a good selection of hotels. Many hotels are a bit simpler. However, keep in mind that if you travel in the middle of summer, it can get very hot during the days. Evenings become a bit cooler and more pleasant, but during the day it can get hot, so drink plenty of water and use a cap or hat if you spend a day checking out attractions.