In the first decades of the 20th century, Aragonese filmmaker Luis Buñuel filmed the documentary Las Hurdes, land without bread. A tape that showed all the crudeness and poverty of this area of Extremadura. However, today this territory north of Cáceres is a magnificent destination for a trip through Extremadura. Why The Hurdes It has places as fascinating as the ones we are going to present below.
How to get to Las Hurdes
The region of Las Hurdes represents the northernmost area of the province of Cáceres, already bordering the Castilian territory of Salamanca.Las Hurdes - oscardodo / Flickr.com
For centuries these lands were integrated into the domain of La Alberca, one of the most beautiful villages of Salamanca. And precisely, one of the entrances to the region is from La Alberca, since in a half hour you reach the Hurdan towns of Riomalo de Abajo or Las Mestas by road.
Another entrance is through the town of Pinofranqueado, which is the first town of Las Hurdes that one finds if you make the trip from Madrid. Precisely, this Pinofranqueado is the largest population in the entire area that is made up of more than 40 nuclei, many of which are tiny villages, which here is known by the name of farmhouses, word of Arabic origin.
Natural tourism in Las Hurdes
The truth is One of the great reasons to make a trip to Las Hurdes is to enjoy its nature. We are talking about a beautiful mountain environment, whose main quality is a very pleasant surprise: it is a very humid territory. And that manifests itself in places like the ones we are going to visit.
1. The Melero meanderMeandro Melero - Juanje Perez Photography
This is the most spectacular of the many meanders that form the region's rivers. In this case, the Alagón river, in border territory with Castilla y León, forms a practically perfect turn at the height of the population of Riomalo de Abajo.
The best place to contemplate this whim of nature is from above, specifically, from the viewpoint of La Antigua. A place where you can take some amazing photos.
2. The Jet of the MeanceraOvejuela - David Acevedo Godoy / Flickr.com
As you can imagine, Las Hurdes is a region to know on footIt is the best way to discover its incredible nature based on pine, chestnut, strawberry and cherry trees.
And, of course, you will find many creeks touring that landscape. A broken and rugged landscape, so waterfalls and waterfalls are common, like this one from Chorro de la Meancera in Gasco. A beautiful corner that locals simply call the Miacera.
3. Natural pools in Las HurdesLos Angeles River - blenamiboa / Flickr.com
But all the river attractions of Las Hurdes are not only photogenic, they can also be enjoyed with a refreshing swim. There are many natural pools scattered throughout the region.
Here we are going to recommend the most visited of all. You can enjoy the best bath in the pool that forms the Los Angeles River in the town of Pinofranqueado, precisely under its bridge, which exceeds 100 years old.
The architecture of Las Hurdes
However, there are also attractions of human and historical origin in the area, and one of them is to discover the black architecture of its villages. In this region typical are slate and stone based constructions, essentially austere and functional.Typical architecture - Jesús Pérez Pacheco / Flickr.com
This architecture can be seen in many of the towns of Las Hurdes. But nevertheless, to see the best preserved specimens you have to go to places like Martilandrán, Aceitunilla or El Gasco.
In fact in this last population there is even an interpretation center whose protagonist is the typical Hurdana house. Traditional houses that allow us to understand the history of these lands of Extremadura, once as poor as Buñuel presented them and currently as interesting for travelers of the 21st century.
"There is a lot of difference between traveling to see countries and to see villages."
The Hurdes are a region still little known, but perfect for a getaway in which to enjoy nature and a quiet and leisurely pace of life that always allows you to disconnect.