Red, Black and Yellow Villages: Riaza

At the foot of the Sierra de Ayllón, in the municipality of Riaza, there are some small villages of unquestionable beauty. Neither monuments nor gastronomy… It is the architecture and the colours of the houses. The appeal of these unique spaces form a wonderful route through the red, black and yellow villages. The different shades are due to the different materials used in the area for these constructions: ferruginous sandstone reds, slate blacks and quartzite yellows. Which of these colours would you choose?

Alquité – Yellow Villages

It will be our first stop and the color we will discover is yellow. In this small village, with only 4 inhabitants, the Romanesque Church of San Pedro from the 12th century stands out, undoubtedly one of the most unique in the whole province. The main entrance is the most important element which reminds us of the Chapter House of Burgo de Osma Cathedral and the Monastery of Santo Domingo de Silos.

red villages

Martín Muñoz de Ayllón – Yellow Villages

We could say that it is a yellow town although the colour red has been becoming more and more important, so several colours are intermingled. In fact we will also see black since slate is part of the construction of both the walls and the roofs. As a curiosity, the slate quarries in the surroundings were used for the roof of the Palace of La Granja and for the floor of the Cathedral of Segovia.

Villacorta – Red Villages

This will be the first town belonging to the red villages and it will be surprising that even the ground is this color. In addition to its imposing color, we have several areas of interest to discover: the Church of Santa Catalina, two Palomares (a Roman bridge) and the Hermitage of San Roque. After a walk through its streets, there is nothing better than relaxing in its pleasant square.

red villages

Madriguera – Red Villages

It is one of the most emblematic spots on this route.  This is mainly due to the fact that, thanks to a recent rehabilitation of the houses, it is one of the best preserved, where every detail is taken care of and the colour red prevails over any other. The best? Walking around and enjoying every single detail of one of the best red villages.

Becerril – Black Villages

From this moment on, a more somber journey through the black villages begins (remember that there are several routes of black architecture in Guadalajara). After walking through its irregular and labyrinthine streets, an imposing square will stand out, which we will find next to the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción.

Serracín – Black Villages

Here nostalgia is ensured by an environment created by depopulation since only 11 inhabitants live here. Most of the buildings are abandoned, although there is still beauty in the buildings, made of black slate, accompanied by reddish stones on windows and doors.

red villages

El Muyo – Black Villages

This is the best example of black architecture. The entire houses (walls, roofs) are built with slate and the streets are also black.  The uniformity of this colour is an attraction for the visitor and, thanks to this, restoration work is beginning to be done so that it does not end up being abandoned.


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