Tuesday, August 6

Spain's real-life Smurf village painted entirely blue has heaps of surprises.

The evil wizard Gargamel may struggle to find the Smurfs' village in the beloved books, but had he headed to Spain he may have had more luck! That's because the entire village of Juzcar in Malaga is painted bright blue in a nod to the iconic blue beings, not to mention there are plenty of Smurf-themed surprises throughout. Juzcar hasn't always been bright blue. In fact, it was given the eye-catching makeover back in 2011 as a promotional stunt for Sony's film The Smurfs. However, once the promotion was over, locals decided to keep the town in its new bright blue hues. That also included the quirky Smurfs-themed artwork to be found hidden amidst the walls, as well as statues of the iconic characters, including Papa Smurf and Smurfette.
In fact, a stroll through the village's street will uncover plenty of Smurf offerings including quirky Mushroom-shaped huts just like the ones Smurfs live in. Of course, that's not all that Juzcar has to offer. Thanks to its lush green surroundings it's an ideal spot for adventurers whether you want to hike through the Andalusian countryside or take on a cycling trail. Meanwhile, the local restaurants serve up some seriously delicious fare, while there are plenty of souvenirs to be found in the boutiques.
Since its makeover, Juzcar has enjoyed quite the tourism boost, with numbers averaging up to 80,000 visitors a year. In 2017 it was reported that the village was banned from officially calling itself the home of the Smurfs and organising Smurf-themed events. However, the Smurf statues, the blue-coloured buildings and the colourful artwork still remain for those who do want to visit. Located approximately 115 kilometres from Málaga it is quite the detour (the drive takes around two hours), but worth a visit if you are planning a wider Spanish itinerary.

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