• Spain's news in English
9 charming Spanish towns to visit before the tourists come
Sepúlveda, one of Spain's most charming towns. Photo: Michael Jean/Wikimedia

9 charming Spanish towns to visit before the tourists come

The Local · 21 Jan 2016, 14:30

Published: 21 Jan 2016 14:30 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Spain is full of so many charming villages and towns that in 2012, they decided to group together to form the association of the most beautiful towns in Spain

Their goal is to "promote our rural towns while protecting and preserving our cultural heritage". 

In order to qualify, towns must have a population of fewer than 15,000 people and boast an impressive architectural or cultural heritage. 

Now, the exclusive group as admitted nine new towns - among the most picturesque and unspoilt that Spain has to offer - but you'd better be quick if you want to explore them before the tourists arrive! 

Laguardia (Álava) 

The beautiful town of Laguardia is located in the region of Rioja Alavesa and has a population of only 1,500 people. The town is surrounded by the "king's wall" from the middle ages and its main industry is wine. So if you're a history or wine buff, this is right up your street. 

Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 

Liérganes (Cantabria)

The cute town of Liérganes in Cantabria, northern Spain, is home to 2,391 people. It boasts a beautiful "Roman bridge" which was actually built in 1587. 

Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 

Sepúlveda (Segovia) 
Sepúlveda is located on the edge of the Hoces del Rio Duratón National Park and enjoys impressive views over the local sierra. It is also renowned for its gastronomy, with local restaurants specializing in roast lamb and suckling pig. 

Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 
Sos del Rey Católico (Zaragoza) 
The historical town of Sos was the birthplace of King Ferdinand I of Spain - hence the later addition of del Rey Católico (of the Catholic King). It was built in the 10th century and served as a border town during the Reconquista. 
Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 
Torazo (Asturias) 
The tiny village of Torazo is home to just 247 inhabitants and is characterized by its traditional rural architecture, including ancient hórreos - or granaries made of wood or stone built on pillars that are typical in northern Spain. 
Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 
Trujillo (Cáceres) 
Trujillo, in western Spain, is home to around 9,000 inhabitants and boasts many medieval and renaissance buildings in its old town. Many of its buildings were built by Francisco Pizarro, the famous Spanish conquistador who conquered Peru. His statue dominates the town's plaza mayor. The town also hosts a cheese festival every May, so if you are a fan of queso, this could be the ideal place to visit. 
Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 
Ciudad Rodrigo (Salamanca) 
One of the bigger towns on the list, Ciudad Rodrigo is home to 14,000 people. A key border fortress, the town was the site of a 10-day siege by the Duke of Wellington. It also has the dubious honour of being home to one of Spain's weirdest museums, the museum of toilets. 
Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 
Peñalba de Santiago (Leon)
Story continues below…
Peñalba de Santiago's church is an excellent example of Mozarab architecture from the 10th century. The stone-walled houses in this little hamlet are a little-known treasure and a must-visit for those interested in Spain's rich history. 
Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 
Zuheros (Córdoba) 
The beautiful white-washed mountain village of Zuheros is home to only around 820 inhabitants. The Murciélagos caves are located close to the village and are home to one of the largest bat colonies on Andalusia. 

Photo: pueblosmasbonitosdeespaña 

For more news from Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.es)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Spain's Podemos sees golden opportunity in Socialist woes
Pablo Iglesias is ready to step up in opposition. Photo: AFP

As Spain's conservatives prepare to re-take power after 10 months of political limbo, anti-austerity party Podemos has set its sights on replacing the divided Socialists as the main opposition force.

Wildlife ranger accused over decapitated bison in Valencia
The headless corpse of Sauro was found last month. Photo: Carlos Alamo / Reserva de Valdeserrillas

The case of the beheaded bison at a wildlife reserve in Valencia just got a whole lot weirder.

Spain jobless drops below 20% for first time in six years
The unemployed queuing up outside a Madrid job centre. Photo: AFP

Spain's unemployment fell below 20 percent for the first time in six years, official figures showed on Thursday.

'Saints not ghouls' insists Spanish church for Halloween
Suggested outfits from the Bishopric of Cadiz and Ceuta. Photo: Shower of Roses

Spanish bishops are urging good Christian children to forgo zombie, ghost and devil outfits and instead dress up as "saints, virgins and apostles".

Tough road ahead, Spain PM warns before return to power
Rajoy will try and form a government this week. Photo: AFP

Spain's acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy warned on Wednesday of a tough road ahead as he prepares to take power again at the head of a minority government with little support.

Russia withdraws request to refuel warships in Ceuta
The aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov was due to dock in Ceuta

Russia has withdrawn a request for its aircraft carrier group to be refuelled at the Spanish port of Ceuta, authorities confirmed.

Bulls replace guard dogs at scrap yard in Valencia
Two bulls will be patrolling the scrap yard in eastern Spain. Archive photo: AFP

Guard dogs were not proving enough of a deterrent to thieves at a car breakers yard in eastern Spain so the owner has brought in a pair of fighting bulls.

Two-headed shark born in Spanish laboratory
Scientists are studying the rare find. Photo: IBIMA / University of Malaga

Scientists at the University of Malaga found the embryo of a shark with two heads and just one body.

Spain under pressure to stop refuel of Russian warships
Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov is due to arrive in Ceuta. Photo: Mil Ru / Wikimedia

Spain is facing international pressure to refuse permission for a Russian warship flotilla to refuel in Ceuta en route to continuing airstrikes against the Syrian city of Aleppo.

Most wanted: Fugitive rapist arrested in Tenerife
Mohammed Jahangir Alam was arrested n Tenerife. Photo: Crimestoppers.

Mohammed Jahangir Alam, one of Britain's most wanted fugitives, who fled the country in 2008 after allegedly raping a woman, was found working in Tenerife.

Analysis & Opinion
Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Spanish 'La Mafia' restaurants banned after Italian complaint
Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Hunt launched for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Napflix: Spaniards launch very boring TV channel for siestas
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
jobs available