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The pink-hued medieval houses of Albarracín are like nowhere else in Spain. So authentic are the twisting, narrow streets with their overhanging wooden balconies that one half expects Don Quixote and Sancho Panza to appear from around a blind corner. You can argue all day about Spain’s prettiest village, but Albarracín, with its picturesque fortifications, churches and houses on a high rocky promontory carved out by a loop of the Río Guadalaviar, is definitely a contender. Its unique medieval history as an independent mini-state, and the story of its resurrection from near-abandonment over the past 60 years, add to the fascination. The town is 38km west of Teruel and well worth a stay of a night or two.

The pink colour, by the way, comes from the unusual hue of the local gypsum, an important construction material hereabouts.

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