Travellers worldwide are drawn to the White Villages of Andalusia, and it's easy to see why. Only foreigners are surprised by the hue, but locals in Spain know that it serves a practical purpose by shielding their dwellings from the scorching sun.
Most of the White Villages are located in the highlands of the provinces of Malaga and Cadiz, where the daytime temperature in summer often exceeds +48 degrees. The reflective white effect allows residents to maintain a comfortable microclimate in their homes without using modern air conditioners and sophisticated split systems. The method, tested for centuries, still works effectively today, delighting Andalusian peasants with its reliability and low cost.
The White Villages of Andalusia look incredibly impressive from afar, striking the imagination of travellers with a dazzling radiance that stands out brightly against the background of green forests and the brown slopes of the surrounding mountains. At first glance, all villages look like twins, but each has its characteristics and individual traits.
These White Villages are often represented by this town or village, which combines urban planning with a rural aesthetic. A small population, a remote mountain setting, and a thriving agricultural sector characterise these communities. Mijas's proximity to Malaga (30 km down the highway) makes it an ideal location for tourism development; the town has undergone this transformation to become a quintessential "White Village," complete with clean streets, rustic shops, and boisterous celebrations. To get around Mijas, you may take advantage of the local taxi service (burro-taxi) provided by hardworking donkeys outfitted with a harness and a unique identification number.
Things to do in Mijas:
- From Costa del Sol: Mijas, Marbella and Puerto Banús Tour
- Mijas Small-Group Walking Tour
- From Malaga or Costa del Sol: Mijas, Marbella & Puerto Banus
You should visit the small white village of Huéscar, which previously did not particularly stand out from a number of its kind. However, in 2011, it was chosen as the location for the presentation of a new film about the Smurfs produced by Sony Corporation. All the houses were repainted in sky-blue colours with the consent of the residents. After the end of the presentation, the residents did not want to return the usual white paint to the buildings, and Huéscar became the first Blue Village in Andalusia.
Setenil de las Bodegas
The location of the Village of Setenil de las Bodegas is northeast of the province of Cadiz, famous for its high mountains with wayward rivers and deep gorges. An unusual white village was built in one of these gorges on the banks of the Rio Trejo River. The singularity of Centennial lies in the fact that it is built into the rocks. In constructing houses, churches, shops, and entertainment venues, all-natural mountain niches and sheds were used, and some stones were practically hidden behind the resulting buildings.
The town administration and citizens have worked hard to preserve the hamlet so that it may be appreciated for its historical and scenic value. Located in Andalusia, Casares is picture-perfect thanks to its fruit orchards, hilltop gryphon colonies, and the lovely River Guadiaro.
Book now: From Costa del Sol: Casares Private Tour
Spanish provinces in the south include more White Villages. Among them is the serene and tranquil Medina of Sidonia, which, like Casares, has preserved historical traditions; the small town of Ojen, which is tucked away near the Sierra Blanca mountain close to the resort of Marbella; and the charming communities of Arcos de la Frontera, Vejer de la Frontera, and El Bosque. These additional White Villages won't disappoint lovers of spectacular vistas and lovely landscapes.
A visit to Ronda, one of the strangest places in Andalusia, should mark the start or end of the tour of the White Villages. This city has long been regarded as the unofficial capital of the White Villages and the home of the famous Spanish bullfight due to its rich history, distinctive location, and proud demeanour.