A Travel guide to Valderrobres, Spain’s secret fairytale village 

A scenic view over Valderrobres, Spain. Photo: Joan G.

Complete with a Gothic castle and church, a renaissance town hall, and one of Spain’s most charming old towns, Valderrobres is the perfect fairy-tale village for budget travelers. And it should come as no surprise that it’s a favorite on lists featuring the most beautiful towns in Spain.

One thing for sure seems certain: if Valderrobres were more conveniently located to either of Spain’s biggest cities (like Madrid or Barcelona), it would surely be far more expensive. Luckily for Cheapos, it’s very picturesque and even better, very reasonably priced!

More tips for visiting Spain on the cheap
• 50 ways to save in Spain
• 8 Overlooked destinations in Spain that budget travelers should visit
• 10 First-time mistakes to avoid when you visit Spain

Home to around 2,000 residents, Valderrobes is just big enough to offer a few amenities and even a hostel. In the local variant of Catalan (Vall-de-roures), the town name means “valley of oaks”, and the scenery is completely free of charge. Plus, the city is very walkable making it cheap and easy to get around.

Food and accommodation may cost slightly more than in other parts of Aragon Province’s Teruel region but are very reasonable as compared to bigger Spanish cities. Here’s how to visit Valderrobres on a budget.

Getting there and getting around

The nearest international airports to Valderrobres are Barcelona and Valencia Airports, followed by Madrid.

From Barcelona
If you’re heading towards Valderrobres from Barcelona, expect to spend about 4.5 hours getting to your destination in public transportation (train to Tortosa + a bus to Valderrobres) and around €30 each way. If you’re traveling in a group, we recommend you rent a car, and drive — it reduces your travel time to three hours. Check out our tips for renting a car and driving in Spain.

From Valencia
If you’re making the trip from Valencia, you’ll spend about five hours in transit. Hop the train to Tortosa, where you’ll need to grab a bus the rest of the way for a total of around €30 each way. By driving, you’ll reduce your travel time to three hours. If you’re traveling in a group, book a rental car well in advance, and you could end up spending less money and time by driving.

From Madrid
Finally, from Madrid, it’s a substantially longer haul: six hours for a train and bus combo to your destination or nearly five hours in the car. If you have more time than available cash, you can also take an ALSA or Grupo Samar Bus for around €40 each way.

Once you’ve arrived, the city itself is very walkable and best navigated on foot. Leave the car parked and walk around the town — the streets are very narrow in some spots and driving is more of a nuisance than it’s worth.

Valderrobres Stone Bridge

Walk over a stone bridge in Valderrobres that’s more than 600 years old!

Free and cheap things to do in Valderrobres

In this particular case, the city, and specifically the Old Town of Valderrobres is the destination, not the jumping off point. It’s just the kind of place where you should park the car and leave it somewhere for a few days. With your rental car safely stowed, you can get to the pleasant task of exploring on foot.

Stroll the streets, stop for the occasional coffee with a pastry or a beer with a wedge of Spanish omelet, and just enjoy the gorgeous vistas. That said, there are a few must-sees around town that you should be sure to add to your itinerary.

The Castle and Santa Maria Church

Before your time in Valderrobres is up, be sure to climb up to the ramparts that crown the village for sweeping views and stop into the castle’s church for a quiet moment of reflection. Visit the Castillo de Valderrobres website for more info.

The Stone Bridge

Stroll across the village’s medieval bridge towards the striking San Roque portal, one of the seven original gateways to the walled medieval community. This iconic bridge dates back to 1390!

Town Hall

Be sure to get a good look at the city’s Renaissance-era town hall building — it’s so famous, it was included in Barcelona’s World Expo exhibit of Spain’s most iconic buildings.

Els Ports Nature Park

Outdoorsy folks will want to take the 10-minute drive (or HIFE bus, twice daily) to Beseit to get some fresh air at Els Ports National Park and get a good look at the rocky Penyagalera peak just a few miles east of town. Travelers making the trip to Valderrobres from Valencia or Catalonia could also consider making a stop in the park on their return trip if they’d like the venture further into the wilderness.

Cheap eats

As elsewhere in Spain, drinking and eating in this village is a bargain. The quality is good and the quantity is generous. For hearty, traditional fare at a reasonable price, we like La Cabaña (c/Santiago Hernandez Ruiz) or Baudilio Asador (Av. Cortes de Aragón) for grilled meats. Expect to spend €10 and up for midday fixed price meal, and €15 and up come evening for an a la carte dinner — depending on how many courses you order and your beverage choices.

Hotel El Salt

The amazing view from a room at Hotel El Salt.

Budget-friendly accommodations in Valderrobres

With hotel rooms starting at around €50, a place to lay your head in Valderrobres won’t break your budget. For clean and simple private rooms with free breakfast, we recommend two options:

Hotel El Salt

The large double rooms are modern with free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV. Even better, many feature breathtaking views of Valderrobres Castle and Matarraña River. In the morning, you can start your day with a complimentary breakfast. Double rooms start from $65 per night. Learn more about Hotel El Salt.

Hostal Querol

Don’t be fooled by the name, this is actually a hotel and all rooms have a private bath). Certain rooms have balconies, so request when booking. Prices for double rooms start at $59. See photos and read more about Hostal Querol.

Need a few more options? Browse all hotels in Valderrobes, Spain.