The lovely villages of Vía de la Plata, the Spanish Route 66

In the 7th century BC, the peninsula inhabitants established a route that joined the southwest with the northwest. This route would become a Roman road used by the roman troops when moving to the north. After that it would be called “Vía Mozárabe”, the origin of its current name. Vía de la Plata, also known as the Spanish Route 66, became a commercial, artistic and shepherding route that ended up joining the Camino de Santiago as well.

In this millenary route, you will explore popular cities, such as Mérida and Salamanca. But you will also discover plenty of tiny and charming villages in Vía de la Plata that you will never forget. These are some of our favorites.

5 extraordinary villages of the Spanish Route 66

Galisteo, Cáceres

Galisteo, Cáceres.

Galisteo, Cáceres. | Shutterstock

Between Plasencia and Coria, you will find Galisteo. This is one of the villages in the Vía de la Plata with a Roman origin. Located on the mountain, this town has become an excellent viewpoint of the Jerte valley. Declared a Cultural Interest Spot in 1996, Galisteo offers many tourist atractions: the wall, the Asunción church, the Picota castle-palace or the Plaza Mayor.

Granja de Moreruela, Zamora

Santa María de Moreruela monastery, Zamora.

Santa María de Moreruela monastery, Zamora. | Shutterstock

With only 280 inhabitants, this is one of the most charming villages of Vía de la Plata. This place, whose economy is based on agriculture and the cattle industry, dates back to the Middle Ages. If you visit Granja de Moreruela, you should explore the Moreruela monastery, one of the ancient landmarks of the Order of the Cisterians. Since it was built in the 12th century, only some of its walls are preserved today.

Baños de Montemayor, Cáceres

Baños de Montemayor, Cáceres.

Baños de Montemayor, Cáceres. | Shutterstock

Baños de Montemayor is in Ambroz valley, near Sierra de Béjar. This village has something special and you will feel it at first sight. Its Roman past is still alive today and not only because of the path. The hot springs from that ancient era are an attractive spa now. On the other hand, the mountainous environment is filled with forests. Combined with the Baños reservoir, it creates a landscape of great beauty that is well worth a visit. Also, the magnificent Béjar is very close.

Villafranca de los Barros, Badajoz

Villafranca de los Barros, Badajoz.

Villafranca de los Barros, Badajoz. | Shutterstock

Villafranca de los Barros stands among vineyards. This town and Almendralejo, both in Extremadura, are the most renowned in Tierra de Barros. Its main attraction is the Nuestra Señora del Valle church, of late Gothic style. It has a charming and traditional atmosphere. Here you can taste the best wines and excellent pork. Its relaxing environment and tasty gastronomy turn it into one of the best villages of Vía de la Plata.

Grimaldo, Cáceres

Grimaldo, Cáceres.

Grimaldo, Cáceres. | Shutterstock

If you stumble upon this little village of 67 residents, you will discover a big treasure. The Grimaldo castle was built in the 14th century and now is the most distinguished symbol of the village. It was extremely relevant during the Middle Ages due to the right of asylum granted by the kings Alfonso X and Sancho IV.

Text: Fátima González-Besada Gómez

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