Black Villages of Guadalajara
The so-called Black Villages take their name from their blackish appearance, in the most literal meaning of the word. These are villages where slate is rather abundant, that is why this rock has been traditionally used as a key element for their architecture, thus providing them this characteristic dark color.
Thanks to the utilization of the available resources in its environment that these villages carried out, we find today the possibility to enjoy a beautiful and picturesque landscape. Besides, this type of construction housing, with compact spaces and small windows lead us to believe that winters were far from pleasant.
The black architecture is found all throughout the provinces of Madrid, Segovia and Guadalajara, thanks to the mountain chains of Ayllon and Alto Rey. Notwithstanding, this type of villages is way more abundant in Guadalajara, which is where we are focusing on in this post so that you get the most of your road trip full of amazing landscapes.
The coast of Biscay
The province of Biscay (in Basque and officially, Bizkaia), beyond the importance of its capital, Bilbao, offers a magnificent cocktail of sea and mountain. A land of character, history and tradition that takes pride in a well-deserved gastronomy.
On this post, we suggest you a 1-day car route by the coast, although the longer the better because there is plenty to see and do.
Alpujarra of Granada
The Alpujarra is a natural paradise formed by a series of whitewashed picturesque villages of great beauty that extends over the south foothills of Sierra Nevada up to the Mediterranean coast, between the provinces of Granada and Almeria. This is an area of contrasts, with a rugged terrain formed by valleys and ravines.
The Alpujarra has been home to Iberians, Celts, Romans and Visigoths, yet the Muslims were, by far, the civilization that left the biggest mark during the Al-Andalus time period. As a matter of fact, the Alpujarra was the place where the Nasrid Kingdom was confined after being defeated by the Catholic Monarchs in 1492.
The Moorish spent a lot of time in this area until they were eventually expelled after the The Rebelion of the Alpujarras (1568-1571), when the Moorish people rose up against the Pragmatic Sanction in 1567.
We can still see to this day, the reflection of the Muslim mark in this particular area in the architecture, the local cuisine, carpet weaving, the agricultural landscape an, among other aspects, the presence of names of Arab origin.
A road trip to discover the island of Lanzarote in one or two days, it depends on how easy you want to take it. We leave out of the trip the National Park of Timanfaya. This volcanic habitat is the most interesting spot to visit in Lanzarote, from the tourist standpoint, but is it highly advisable to visit it separately and spend all the time it deserves.