The Hanging Houses of Cuenca – Casas Colgadas

Written By: The Planet D

When we heard about the hanging houses in Cuenca, Spain we were intrigued to go and check out this world heritage site for ourselves. The Casas Colgadas are a set of precarious houses built on the side of a high ridge hanging over a deep gorge.  The view was beautiful.

Cuenca and The Casas Colgadas

The Casa Colgadas in Cuenca
The Casa Colgadas

Before seeing the Casas Colgatas with our own eyes, we expected to see rows of giant houses dangling precariously over a gorge. But it turns out there are only three houses remaining in Cuenca. The famous hanging houses dangle over the side of a cliff with their balconies built to jut out even further over the gorge.

casa calgodas cuenca spain

Cuenca is a beautiful Spanish town

town of cuenca
Beautiful city of Cuenca

The Casas Colgadas may be what draws tourists here in the brochures, but it is also a beautiful gorge and a very pretty town that is worth visiting in its own right. We would put Cuenca up there with the Beautiful Cities of Spain that we have been lucky enough to see. The sites in the city have made Cuenca endure as a must-see destination in Spain.

Cross the bridge to the cuenca
Cross the bridge to the city!

Walking along the iron bridge, The Puente San Pablo is a bit of a thrill. The side rails are low and the drop into the gorge is deep, but it is a perfect viewpoint of the Casas Colgadas.  And really how can you go to Cuenca without seeing its most famous site.

The Casa Colgadas are the draw to the town of Cuenca after all.

The Cathedral in the Center Square cuenca
The Cathedral in the Center Square!

After crossing the bridge we walked to the main square and the usual central figure of all towns in Spain stood proudly overhead.  Ta Catedral is another Gothic Spanish Cathedral that you will find in almost every town.  They are all equally impressive, beautiful, and ancient.  This one dates back to the 16th century.

After catching lunch at the square a walk north was in order.

cuenca city view from above
The views are spectacular!

The medieval architecture of Cuenca is impressive. Cuenca is built high on a hill overlooking the Rio Jucar and a gorgeous canyon valley. Take your time to check out the views, but make sure to make your way to the northernmost point of Cuenca.

It has the best views of the city.

An unobstructed view of Cuenca!

We stopped at a viewpoint that looked like an old fortified wall. It is located right at History Archives.It looks like it should be the best view of the city. It has steps to walk up to the top and you can lookout over the streets. But…This is not the viewpoint.

You must go past this to the park across the tourist information centre. Here you will have unobstructed views of all Cuenca and the gorge including the Casas Colgadas. We almost didn’t walk up there because we thought that it might not be worth the effort or time.
It was.

Cuenca is an impressive city

The streets of Cuenca spain
The streets of Cuenca!

We kept wondering, who lives here? Coming from Canada, it is incomprehensible for us to live in this historical city that has survived through the ages. People actually drive through these tiny streets every day and follow the path of historical figures. Their apartments have been here for almost half a century.

But then after we brought up the subject we laughed. Why wouldn’t someone live here, people have lived in Cuenca for centuries, why should it change now?

While the Casas Colgadas wasn’t exactly what we expected, the city of Cuenca is worth visiting. It is the classic Spanish town that all tourists search for in their travels. It is colourful and vibrant, historical and beautiful. 

Go ahead and visit and see what you think of the Casas Colgadas for yourself. 

For More historical cities in Spain, check out these posts

Travel Planning Resources

Looking to book your next trip? Why not use these resources that are tried and tested by yours truly.

Flights: Start planning your trip by finding the best flight deals on Skyscanner

Book your Hotel: Find the best prices on hotels with these two providers. If you are located in Europe use and if you are anywhere else use TripAdvisor

Find Apartment Rentals: You will find the cheapest prices on apartment rentals with VRBO

Travel Insurance: Don't leave home without it. Here is what we recommend:

  • Allianz - Occasional Travelers.
  • Medjet - Global air medical transport and travel security.

Need more help planning your trip? Make sure to check out our Resources Page where we highlight all the great companies that we trust when we are traveling.

About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Debra Corbeil are the owners and founders of The Planet D. After traveling to 115 countries, on all 7 continents over the past 13 years they have become one of the foremost experts in travel. Being recognized as top travel bloggers and influencers by the likes of Forbes Magazine, the Society of American Travel Writers and USA Today has allowed them to become leaders in their field.

Leave a Comment

13 thoughts on “The Hanging Houses of Cuenca – Casas Colgadas”

  1. Spectacular photographs. Although you have seen them before, these images are still impressive.

    It is curious that you have been able to get to know one of the smallest cities in Spain. It is not usually among the most visited, but it has a lot of history in its streets.

    Congratulations for the post.

  2. That place looks gorgeous! I am a serious sucker for houses painted in different colors.
    .-= Bethany´s last blog ..Carlsbad State Beach Campground Review =-.

  3. We didn’t see any way to go into the houses. It almost looked like people still lived in them. It would be pretty cool to go in to them. I guess my description was a little harsh, but the way that the guide book described the Casas was very different from what we viewed. We expected these giant houses clinging precariously to the side of a mountain. Instead there were three medium sized homes with their balconies built over the gorge. But like I said, the city is beautiful and worth the trip.

  4. Not sure how comfortable I’d be sleeping in that first house!
    .-= Anil´s last blog ..Where Hemispheres Meet: Mitad Del Mundo Quito, Ecuador =-.

  5. Dave n Deb, you need to get back to doing your thrill seeking stuff, bikes, hikes and all. Just looking at the first photo that you describe as ‘unimpressive’ .. shocked me a little, because there are many things unimpressive but that picture didnt fit the description (just my humble opinion!) Can I say you sounded a little huffy that it didnt meet your expectation! I’m glad I read further as you clearly did enjoy the gorge, cathederal etc or perhaps you were just being polite/positive without really feeling it? Guys, I’m not sure Europe is really doing it for you, which is not a criticism at all. I live in the UK but prefer to travel long haul as I favour the culture shock of more exotic locations. Still loving your updates but looking forward to the return of the ADVENTURE couple!

    • Hi Lily, The Casas themselves were unimpressive to us because there were only 3 of them. We were expecting much more. But we did love the city and I am glad that you read on. Dave also has a knack for making places look incredible in his photos:) We agree with you though, we need to get back to doing some more adventures. Europe has been a nice change but it hasn’t been a thrill seeking adventure. It is amazing to see all of these incredible World Heritage Sites, but we need some activities. We were just talking about that the other day and couldn’t agree with you more!

  6. The last picture of the streets of Cuenca looks a lot like Valparaiso, Chile. There were some amazing streets filled with color and very interesting colorful graffiti. Awesome pictures!
    .-= Migration Mark´s last blog ..Durian Buffet: All You Can Eat of the World’s Most Body Altering Delicacy =-.

    • We haven’t been to Chile yet, but if their towns look a lot like Cuenca then I am looking forward to that as much as the mountains and scenery. It is a beautiful town, these types of places are our favorite to visit.

    • I hear you Alison, we keep getting a longer and longer list too! Every time we go somewhere we say that we have to come back to see more. So many amazing cities and sites and so little time.