LifestyleUnder the rock: Exploring Setenil de las Bodegas in Andalusia

Under the rock: Exploring Setenil de las Bodegas in Andalusia

Setenil de las Bodegas is one of the most amazing towns in Europe.
Setenil de las Bodegas is one of the most amazing towns in Europe.
Images source: © Adobe Stock

1:13 PM EDT, June 26, 2024

Setenil de las Bodegas is one of the most extraordinary towns in Europe. Walking through its streets or drinking coffee in local cafes, you can see rocks hanging right above your head. For the residents, this is everyday life—they have been living this way for generations.

Setenil de las Bodegas is an ideal place for a day trip for tourists staying in Andalusia. You can get here in just over an hour from Marbella, one of the most popular resorts on the Costa del Sol. A walk through this unique town will surely leave unforgettable impressions.

Setenil de las Bodegas - a town wedged into rocks

The residents of Setenil de las Bodegas live in buildings wedged into the rocky walls of a gorge. Most of the houses were built in rock caves, making Setenil one of Spain's most original and beautiful cities. People live here under rocks weighing millions of tons.

The settlement belongs to the so-called pueblos blancos or white towns of southern Spain. Calle Cuevas del Sol is the most recognizable street, most often photographed and associated with Setenil de las Bodegas. The whitewashed facades of the houses are "glued" under a large rock shelf. It's best to start the tour from this place, preferably in the morning when the sun beautifully illuminates the white walls.

Setenil de las Bodegas is located 98 miles northeast of Cádiz, in the rocky canyon of the Rio Trejo river. The town is often poetically said to have "the sky made of rocks".

The houses in Setenil de las Bodegas were created in the rocks hundreds of years ago and then rebuilt over the years. About 3,000 people live in the town.

Setenil de las Bodegas is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the province of Cádiz. Tourists visit this town to admire the unique houses and taste chorizo sausage, which—if it comes from here—is considered the best in the entire region.

Setenil de las Bodegas
Setenil de las Bodegas© Adobe Stock

The town is also famous for its excellent pastries, and the local bars and restaurants are among the best in the area.

Ronda - another hit of Andalusia

It is recommended that you combine a trip to Setenil de las Bodegas with a visit to one of the most charming towns in Andalusia, Ronda.

The two towns are about 12 miles apart. Ronda, whose view is breathtaking, is home to 35,000 people. This town is situated on rocks reaching 2,460 feet above sea level, and the buildings, called casas colgadas, cling directly to the edge of the El Tajo gorge. Ronda is crossed by a monumental, 328-foot bridge—Puente Nuevo, built in 1793 by José Martín de Aldehuela.

Ronda is located in Andalusia.
Ronda is located in Andalusia.© Adobe Stock
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