Caminito del Rey

Photo © theo1006

Travel Guide Europe Spain Andalusia Málaga Caminito del Rey

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Introduction

Old and new boardwalk

Old and new boardwalk

© All Rights Reserved theo1006


After its re-opening 29 March 2015, the Caminito del Rey has fast become the number one must-do activity in Andalusia. The name means ‘The King’s Little Pathway’. It is a trail through the narrow Gaitanes Gorge, which for about 2 kilometres consists of boardwalks hanging a 100 metres over the river below. The trail was originally constructed from 1901 to 1905 to facilitate movement of workers on the hydro-electric power plants at either end of it. It got its name after king Alfonso XIII walked it at the occasion of the inauguration of the Conde de Guadalhorce dam. Thereafter the caminito was used by the local population who by it could avoid a long detour. But its construction from iron and concrete caused it to deteriorate. At places the concrete surface had collapsed. After two fatal accidents the trail was closed in 2000. The boardwalks have now been remade from wood and stainless steel with due attention to safety. Camera’s and guards are positioned at several locations. Access is limited to a certain number of visitors per day. That’s why it is essential to reserve one’s ticket months head. Book your visit on the official website (below) using the button ‘Book your visit’ in the upper left corner and read up on the advice given there.

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Opening Hours

Daily except Mondays. There are many time options, which have to make reservations for on their website. Be sure to book as early as possible as tickets are sold out very quickly.

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Cost

Individual ticket €10. Individual ticket including shuttle bus €11.55 (one can also pay the driver €1.55).

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Sights and Activities

Caminito del Rey, canyon

Caminito del Rey, canyon

© All Rights Reserved theo1006

The walk is almost 8 kilometres long, mostly downhill, and may take three to four hours if you take your time for pictures and enjoying the views. The first part leads from the main road to the entrance gate by a forest path. At the gate visitors are allowed in batch-wise, so as not to overload the boardwalk. Also one gets a safety helmet to wear, which is collected at the exit. The actual caminito is 2.9 kilometres long and consists of a boardwalk, a forest trail, a second boardwalk, a hanging bridge, and a third boardwalk to the exit. From the exit an earthen path of 2.1 kilometres leads to the bus stop at El Chorro train station.

The railway from Málaga to Córdoba also leads through the gorge. With luck one sees a train weaving in and out of tunnels. Last but not least: Preview your walk in 3D on Google maps.

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Getting There

Consult the official website for the latest under the button ‘plan your visit’.

By Car

From Málaga via the A-357 to a designated parking. A new parking with visitors' centre is under construction near Ardales (12/2017), this will be the most convenient. The other parkings are at: (1) El Chorro train station near Álora, which you reach by the MA-5403. This is near the exit of the trail. Count on an hour and a half to reach the entrance gate by bus and walking, (2) The Conde de Guadalhorce reservoir or the Kiosko restaurant. The walk to the entrance of the trail from the former is 1.5 kilometres, from the latter 2.7 kilometres. A bus with half-hour service commutes between the parkings. A time schedule of the bus service is available on the official website in Spanish (choose ‘Documents’).

By Train

From Malaga Maria Zambrano station to El Chorro station. One has to get on the one train leaving in the morning and plan one’s visit accordingly. At El Chorro a bus goes to the starting point with half hourly service, add to this the time to walk to the entrance of the trail.

By package tour

Tour operators offer packages including transport to and from the site.

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Eat

There are restaurants near the starting point, and near El Chorro station.

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Caminito del Rey Travel Helpers

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This is version 16. Last edited at 8:13 on May 19, 18 by theo1006. 2 articles link to this page.

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