Perception, or how we want to see our surroundings

We started in 2002 with the rental of our house, which is now nearly 15 years ago. Over the years we have always tried to make improvements, both inside and outside. And although we know we will never reach perfection, we are very happy to say that most guests that have stayed here were excited about what we offer. There are a few exceptions to the rule, of course and this blog is an attempt to avoid misunderstandings and thus disappointments.
First of all, we have always tried to show ‘the real thing’ in our descriptions and photographs. Embellishment in advertising a holiday home is counter-productive and very often leads to disappointment. It is also not necessary, because we believe we offer a very attractive spot for people to relax and enjoy their well earned holidays! However, I am a keen photographer and see my surroundings my way. A camera only captures what you want to see and shoot. I see millions of details, I foremost see the beauty of our valley and the near surroundings. But I also know it lies all in the eye of the beholder. We live in the countryside, where recycling is necessary. We also share our space with insects, crawling or flying, but we believe there is room for everyone). And we run a little organic (vegetable) farm and we hope that everyone appreciates the peace and quiet we offer in our little ‘paradise’.

I’ll give you some examples of how and what we wish to perceive.

Do we see an electricity pole 'polluting' the horizon?
Do we see an electricity pole ‘polluting’ the horizon?

Or so we see a colourful composition of fields?
Or do we see a colourful composition of fields?

Do we see a farm and roads?
Do we see a farm and dead trees?

Or do we see colourful fields and a photographic composition?
Or do we see colourful fields, the whimsical shapes of the trees and a photographic composition?

Do we see a dead tree and another electricity pole?
Do we see a dead tree and another electricity pole?

Or do we see a swirling country road with shades (and a dog in this case!)?
Or do we see a swirling country road with shades (and some dogs in this case!)?

Do we see a rusty fence and lots of dry grass?
Do we see a rusty fence and lots of dry grass?

Or do we see an old oak tree..?
Or do we see some ancient oak trees..?

Do we see three tanks for our water supplies?
Do we only see the three tanks for our water supplies (yes, one can hardly nòt see them!)?

Or do we zoom in and see the beautiful view from above our country road?
Or do we zoom in and see the beautiful view from above our country road?

Do we focus on the 'chatarra' (scrap piles) of our neighbours, who work in construction and recycle whatever they can?
Do we focus on the ‘chatarra’ (scrap piles) of our neighbours, who work in construction and recycle whatever they can?

Or do we just see another country road (in the wrong direction and our dog again!)
Or do we just see another country road (and a happy dog..)

Do we see piles and piles or dry grass untidy on the sides of the roads?
Do we see all the dry grass, untidy and chaotic on the sides of the roads?

Or do we see the wild flowers in between?
Or do we see the wild flowers in between?

Do we see a hen-house, made out of scrap and a gate made out of a spring box mattress?
Do we see the hen-house, made out of scrap and a gate made out of a spring box?

Or do we focus on the fig tree behind the gate?
Or do we focus on the fig tree behind the gate and see it it bears fruit?

What I am trying to say is this. The photographs on our website are all ‘true’, but sometimes one needs to relax and open up to see the beauty of the rustic setting of our holiday home. We hope your stay in our home will help you to relax and make you not (yet) want to go home again after your holidays!

Ronda, November 2016

Lies, Francis and Santiago

More than just sun

Holidays is resting, looking for some private space, distance from day to day concerns, sleeping in, seeing new things, recharging your batteries.  Some people think ony of beaches and palm trees when they think of of Andalusia.
Inland Andalucia however is a completely different story. Ronda lies high on a plateau in the interior of the province of Málaga, at about 700 meters altitude, which gives it a different climate.

So the best reason to choose for a holiday in Ronda is, that something can always be seen or done from here, in whatever season.
October to May is the best time to go for long walks or bike rides in the Ronda Mountains, without running the risk of suffering sunstroke. (Hats or caps and lots of water however are best prevention!)
The period from March to May is particularly overwhelming when the wildflowers bloom in abundance and the nightingales incessantly perform their seductive songs. July and August are more suitable for daytime lounging and hanging around the pool, and in the evenings sit outside untill the wee hours enjoying the freshness of the night. June and September are the most pleasant months with lots of sunshine and pleasant temperatures that are still not too hot. These months are very good to go for an early morning walk, to read books, have a long siesta or visit the surrounding cities or villages for day trips.

Browse through some more pages of our website and we hope we convince you that life is good here ! Read more

Landscapes of Ronda

The surroundings of Ronda are of the most varied of Andalusia. One moment you’re driving through barren rocky mountain ranges where nothing seems to grow, and suddenly green and fertile valleys fold out before your eyes, with evergreen Mediterranean forests and landscapes that are always changing color with the seasons.

In the almost 25 years that I have lived here, a walk or a drive has never bored me. On the contrary, I still feel surprised when I see the surrounding beauty of the Serrania de Ronda. My eyes are always taking the photographs that I hardly ever capture in reality, even though I often try.
But I hope that some of my pictures can inspire others to come here and try for themselves!

The valley ‘el Tajo’ of Ronda

Walking along the Rio Gaduarés

Nature Reserve Sierra de las Nieves

Tajo de Abaníco

The seasons; landscapes between Ronda and Campillos:

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Wildflowers in the Serrania de Ronda

In the immediate vicinity of the house you can find wild flowers everywhere. There are more than 1800 registered wildflowers, including some 40 different wild orchids. In the right seasons (mostly spring) and with a somewhat trained eye, you’ll stumble across the most marvelous specimens. There is a whole group of wild orchids, whose refined flower resembles the body of a bee. The trick is to look well around you because of their generally small size wildflowers can easily be overlooked. There are several guided day trips in case you don’t want to miss any!

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The Hidden Valley

Today we walked for five hours off the beaten track, where we passed mossy rocks, majestic holm oaks, we crossed green fields, went through enchanted forests and below jagged rock platforms. We  were guided the path by piled stones, cow dung and goat droppings. Oh yeah, and some sheep, but they went the other way.

This walk has been described by the ‘walking guru’ Guy Hunter-Watts and can be found here (a bit tricky, you can get lost easily..) or you can do the walk with the guide himself

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The light of Ronda and other inspiring characteristics

Once you approach Ronda, coming from the coast, you notice two things. The temperature is slightly cooler and light is different. The sun casts shadows in this mountainous region, making the landscape a constantly changing one. This can be so exciting that it seems as if the sun shines differently here. Along with its exceptional location on the high plateau, the surrounding overwhelming nature and the historic buildings in the old town, it enables you to fall in love with this city. It is therefore that throughout the centuries many artists, temporarily or not, have established themselves in Ronda. Poets, painters, filmmakers, musicians and writers.

One of the best known writers is Rainer Maria Rilke, whose traces can still be found in the streetnames, museums and archives of Ronda, or even in company names. He wrote the much quoted phrase ‘He buscado por todas partes la ciudad Soñada, y al fin la he encontrado en Ronda’ (I have looked everywhere for the dream city, and finally found it in Ronda). Another well known writer is Ernest Hemingway. His book ‘the dangerous summer‘ is based on the rivalry between two of the greatest bullfighters of all time: the ‘RondeñoAntonio Ordoñez and his brother-in-law Luis Miguel Dominguín. Along with celebrities like Orson Welles or Ava Gardner, Hemingway was, due to his friendship with bullfighter Ordoñez, a frequent visitor to Ronda. Orson Welles was so deeply touched by Ronda and his friendship with Antonio, that his ashes have been scattered in the finca of Ordoñez.

Of foreign 20th century painters who felt attracted to Ronda, David Bomberg has probably been the most important. In his footprints followed a number of his students from the ‘Borough Group’, including Miles Richmond and Cliff Holden , permanently located in Ronda . Unfortunately Bomberg, as has been the fate of many artists, lived in extreme poverty . He has fallen somewhat into oblivion, but soon the BBC will show a documentary dedicated to his work and life.

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