Must-visit Spanish towns on the brink of total abandonment as locals flock to cities for work

spanish towns

Granadilla is a popular destination off the beaten track

Solen Le Net

By Solen Le Net

Published: 13/06/2024

- 15:21

Updated: 13/06/2024

- 15:49

More and more Spanish towns face total abandonment as young adults flock to big cities

Spain is renowned for its historical charm, but as modernisation explodes, many towns are on the brink of total abandonment.

A growing number of towns across Spain are being abandoned due to depopulation, with more and more young people flocking to cities for work.

Three areas, that succumbed to heavy destruction during the civil war, are still standing today but people are looking to leave, Olive Press reported.

Despite locals seemingly looking to leave, the towns of Belchite in Zaragoza, Granadilla in Caceres and El Acebuchal in Malaga province areas “you must visit before they disappear”, according to the newspaper La Razon. What are they like?

Reservoir of Gabriel y Galan

Reservoir of Gabriel y Galan captured from the walled town of Granadilla


Belchite, Zaragoza

Belchite contains the ghostly remains of a town destroyed in wartime, but fortunately, tourists can still visit it today.

It contains the ruins of a town destroyed in the 1937 Battle of Belchite during the Spanish Civil War. It has been left relatively untouched since it was destroyed.

Granadilla, Caceres

Described as an unorthodox tourist attraction, Caceres is home to the beautiful walled town of Granadilla.

The town has been completely uninhabited for at least 60 years, looking over a stunning reservoir nearby.

El Acebuchal, Malaga

Located near Frigiliana, La Razon notes that the village “deserves a visit”, adding: “It is characterised by its whitewashed houses adorned with lavender flowers, cobbled streets and breathtaking views of the Mediterranean - all the hallmarks of this small town.”

Despite being derelict for more than half a century, the town is enjoying a second lease of life since it was rebuilt. It is currently home to 33 properties.

Slowly, El Acebuchal is becoming a haven for tourists looking to venture off the beaten track and enjoy a quiet getaway.


Malaga Spain

Popular destinations like Malaga heave with tourists during peak season


The destinations are a perfect alternative for anyone wanting to avoid the hustle and bustle of more tourist destinations during the summer.

Spanish hotspots become swarmed by international visitors during peak season, with some areas starting to introduce taxes.

It may now be a matter of time before a levy is implemented in the southern region of Andalucia, as more cities struggle to cope with the saturation of tourism.

Spanish authorities are also calling for a tourist tax to be levied in the region to help cities pay for projects that would appease pressure from over-tourism.

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