As you’ve probably noticed, we like to keep things blue and yellow around here, so much so that we’ve put together this little round-up of destinations that appreciate our favourite colours as much as we do. From powder blues to sunny yellows, we’ve mapped out some of the world’s best looking sights and cities – follow us as we go into the blue…and yellow:
Juzcar in the Andalucía region of southern Spain is into blue in a big way. It all started back in 2011 when the town’s Mayor David Fernandez Tirado convinced Juzcar’s 400 residents to paint their houses blue. The reason? He wanted Juzcar to land a starring role as the village in the movie Smurfs II. After movie-makers rolled out of town, locals voted to keep Smurfville a permanent fixture. These days visitors flock to the town to slurp blue Smurf spaghetti in its cafés, see Smurf statues in its parks and take selfies with locals who work as police, waiters and staff at the Mushroom Museum. There’s even a burgeoning Smurf wedding industry.
Flights to Malaga
Denmark’s northernmost town, Skagen likes its buildings sunny side up. The seaside fishing village is famous for its “Skagen style” of architecture, thanks to Ulrik Plesner, one of Denmark’s most famous architects who put his stamp on the town in the early 1900s. Today, Skagen is renowned for its eternally cheerful appearance – the cluster of yellow houses with red-clay roofs radiate sunshine even when its cloudy. In the summer months, Skagen is a big hit with Copenhagen residents who make the five-hour drive here, as well as artists and painters who are drawn to its changing light and unusual landscapes.
Flights to Aalborg
Popping out from the shadows of Morocco’s Rif mountains, Chefchaouen is one of the country’s most beautiful and mesmerizing towns. Depending on what time of day you visit, the village runs the spectrum of blue from deep-azure to sky blue. The walls are blue, the doors are blue, the windows are blue – it’s a tradition that’s been kept alive since the 1930s when the town became a refuge for European Jews. According to Judaism, blue represents the sky and God above in heaven. In recent years, Chefchaouen has become popular with day-trippers who come to soak up its laid-back atmosphere, good food and otherworldly charms.
Fligths to Morroco
Everywhere you look in Lisbon, there are bursts of yellow, from tiles to trams to tinned sardines, but it’s Praça do Comércio that takes the rainbow’s brightest shade to a whole new level. The waterfront square is one of the city’s most popular and photographed attractions. Pull up a chair at Café Martinho da Arcada on the north side of the square – the café was once a regular meeting place for writers and poets or find out more about what makes the Portuguese capital tick at the square’s Lisboa Story Centre, a modern interactive museum dedicated to sharing all that’s great about Lisbon.
Flights to Lisbon
Just a short stroll east from Bratislava’s Old Town, you’ll spot the powder blue walls of the Church of St Elizabeth (Kostol svätej Alžbety), also known as The Blue Church (Modrý kostolík). The church’s weird and wonderful appearance combines oriental, Romanesque and classical styles. It’s dedicated to a local medieval princess and saint, who risked losing her title by helping out the city’s poor and needy. Inside, the colourful mosaics are just as impressive.
Bezručova, 811 09 Bratislava-Staré Mesto, Slovakia
Flights to Bratislava
“In the town where I was born, lived a man who sailed to sea. And he told us of his life, in the land of submarines” – what better tribute to the Fab Four than a giant yellow submarine permanently parked outside Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport? The submarine was originally created for the International Garden Festival which took place in Liverpool in 1984. The garden featured an apple-shaped labyrinth as well as the same bronze statue of John Lennon that stands inside the airport today. Full steam ahead…
Flights to Liverpool
Casa Batllós is Gaudí at his quirkiest best – Barcelona locals call it casa del ossos (house of bones) or casa del dragon (house of the dragon) due to its jaw-like balconies and depiction of Sant Jordi (St George and the Dragon). The building’s crowning glory is its roof that has been designed to look like an animal’s spine, with tiles that change colour depending on the angle that you look at them. Step inside and it feels like you’ve been submerged under the sea.
Flights to Barcelona
Passeig de Gracia, 43, 08007 Barcelona
If ever there was a destination designed for Instagram, it’s the Venetian island of Burano. It takes its colours so seriously that residents have to submit a permission slip to local authorities before painting their houses. Windows, shutters and doors all glisten in glorious golds, and eye-popping mustards – pack your sunglasses, you’re going to need them.
Flights to Venice
Burano can be reached via vaporetto number 12 from Fondament Nove in Venice, departures take place every half hour.
- Fiona Hilliard