Spain is a major student tourist destination, and for obvious reasons. The clubs, the sun, the sea, and the beaches can all make for a great holiday.But believe it or not, there’s more to Spain than just Ibiza and Salou. For those looking for
something a bit different, Ronda may be perfect.
Ronda is a mountaintop town, a bit bigger than Kilkenny, found in the south of Spain. Due to
its high altitude, the humidity found elsewhere in southern Spain (such as in Alicante) is non-
The heat is far more bearable, and more importantly, enjoyable. However, those planning a
summer trip should still bring as much suncream as possible, because skin cancer is no joke.
While Ronda is certainly not the largest city in Spain, that doesn’t mean there isn’t a lot to do.
Ronda itself is split into two: the old town and the new town.
For history buffs there’s a lot see. It’s impossible to even discuss Ronda without mentioning
el Puente Nuevo (the new bridge).
It’s an architectural masterpiece that looks like something straight out of “The Lord of the
Rings”. Interestingly enough, the 120m tall bridge did actually make a brief cameo in 2017’s
There’s a long pathway that leads to the bottom of the canyon for any adventurers out there.
It’s not a walk for the faint of heart, and it’s recommended to go in the morning when the
sun is at its weakest.
Alternatively, there’s also the far less physically strenuous task of seeing the world’s oldest
bullring. It has a six-euro entry fee into its museum, which is very interesting and
informative, regardless of the ethics of bullfighting itself.
The Arab Bathhouses, built during the Moorish control of Spain, could also make for an
entertaining afternoon. Entry is actually free after 3 pm on Thursdays.
Ronda is an ideal travel destination for couples. As mentioned before, it’s a mountaintop
town. As such, the views are absolutely picturesque.
Take a walk through the park to see the view in their full glory. Combine that with the slew
of white houses with terracotta rooves and who wouldn’t fall in love?
Beside the park is the Parador hotel, which is where buses typically stop. A cheat day to the
beach is totally possible.
The blue sea found in Marbella is only about an hour and a half away. Alternatively, there are
the various waterparks which can be found in neighbouring Benidorm, Fuengirola and Mijas.
Spain is also famous (or perhaps infamous) for always having at least one festival every day
somewhere in the country. However, one of the biggest festivals celebrated throughout the
country is Easter week.
There’s a procession every day during the week, most of which are accompanied by a
The food is both delicious and also completely affordable. This is the place to try tapas, not
some bougie restaurant in Dublin that overcharges for a rather small piece of food.
Dinner could easily be bought in the vast majority of restaurants and tapas bars for less than
€10. Even possibly five euro depending on hunger levels.
For anyone who isn’t the biggest fan of seafood, give it a go in Ronda. Southern Spain is
famous for its fried fish, which is perhaps a lot more palatable to picky eaters.
Of course, anyone not in the mood to be adventurous is free to check out the staples like
McDonald’s and Burger King. However, those looking for something familiar should really
check out Hola.
Hola is a Chinese restaurant, so they’ll be tons of dishes there that are also found in Ireland.
However, most dishes will be slightly different than their Irish variety, so it’s a great middle
the ground between the typical fast-food chain and some Spanish delicacy.
The staff are all very accommodating, and the atmosphere is perfect for a quiet night. Plus it’s
always airconditioned so actually chilling is a possibility.
There’s also the buffet, Wok, which only received opened. Entry is around 13 euro and they
serve both traditional Spanish dishes and a variety of Asian cuisine.
The most expensive thing will easily be accommodation. While there are quite a few hotels –
a couple of which have reasonable prices – most are high-end hotels which would be outside
of the average student’s budget.
There are plenty of affordable places on Airbnb though. Do keep in mind that Ronda doesn’t
have an airport, and as such a bus will have to be taken.
Fly in from either Seville or Málaga airport. Go with whichever one is cheaper, as both are
about around the same distance from Ronda.
Ronda is an ideal place for a romantic week-long holiday. That’s enough time to take in the
sun and see more or less everything without getting bored.
Brendan Fernando Kelly Palenque
Image Credit: Brendan Fernando Kelly Palenque