The king, in an archive photo, is Hermano Mayor de las Reales Maestranzas en España. M. Guerrero
These are the details of King Felipe’s first-ever official visit to Ronda today

These are the details of King Felipe’s first-ever official visit to Ronda today

The reigning monarch will mark the 450th anniversary of the Real Maestranza, the organisation behind Spain’s oldest riding school and which also manages the town’s historic bullring

Vanessa Melgar


Wednesday, 19 April 2023, 08:27


King Felipe VI will visit Ronda this Wednesday, 19 April, to mark the 450th anniversary of the founding of the Royal Maestranza de Caballería de Ronda (RMR). As part of the celebration, he will hold a meeting with the five maestranzas that exist in Spain - including the one in Ronda, which was the first to be founded - and those in Seville, Granada, Valencia and Zaragoza).

The RMR institution was created in 1573 by order of Felipe II as a cavalry training school, for the defence of the country, and today is dedicated to the promotion of culture and its heritage. It is also in charge of the management of Ronda's historic bullring.

It will be the first time that the King has visited the spectacularly located mountain town that spans a deep gorge, a popular day trip for holidaymakers on the Costa del Sol.

Felipe VI, who will not be accompanied by Queen Letizia, will arrive by helicopter this morning at the barracks of the Spanish Legion, which are located just outside the town.

Also in Ronda this Wednesday will be the president of the Junta de Andalucía, Juanma Moreno; the president of the Malaga provincial authority, Francisco Salado; the Government delegate in Andalucía, Pedro Fernández; and the president of the Andalusian Parliament, Jesús Aguirre, among others, such as the mayor of Ronda, María de la Paz Fernández; former mayors from Ronda; businessmen; and representatives of various associations in the town. In total, around 400 people have been invited to the event, which will take place inside the Real Maestranza.

Felipe VI will enter the headquarters of the Real Maestranza in Ronda along Avenida Virgen de la Paz, a few metres from the start of the popular Calle de la Bola or Carrera Espinel pedestrianised shopping street.

An equestrian exhibition has also been planned in the town’s bullring whciih around 2,500 Ronda schoolchildren will attend. The King will occupy the Royal Box of the historic arena.

Felipe VI will also visit other areas of the Maestranza, such as the recent expansion of the museum, with a room dedicated to bullfighting. The event will end at noon, when, after lunch, the King will leave Ronda by helicopter again, from the Legion barracks.

His father visited Ronda in 2008

The last visit of a member of the Royal Household to Ronda was in 2008, when the King Emeritus, Juan Carlos I, presided over the ceremony for awarding scholarships and prizes at the Real Maestranza. He also gave awards to students of the riding school, the oldest in Spain and one of the longest in existence in Europe.

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