This beautiful area, which hoards historical treasures and gorgeous scenery, lies in the middle of the Province of Málaga (about 60 kms. from the Malaga city), and it is surrounded by the Serranía de Ronda and Antequera. It separates the plains Camplillos, Teba and Antequera in the northern part of the province from the Guadalhorce valley and the fields of Cámara in the south.
Different nations have prospered throughout history at this place, which became rich in hydraulic structures and electricity sources especially in the last century. All of them are connected by the humble path called ‘El Caminito del Rey’ that goes along this nature spot – Desfiladero de los Gaitanes, in an unbelievable way.
a) By road:
From Málaga to Ardales or Álora
Starting from Malaga city, take the A-357 road towards MA-5403. This route is 59.1 kilometers and takes just over 50 minutes by car. From Pizarra you can also take the road to Álora and go to El Chorro Station on the A-343 road. This route is longer, about 60 kms, and takes just over an hour.
From most points of Andalusia you should arrive to Antequera (usually via A-92) and from here you can take two routes. The first one is from Campillos (A-384) to Los Pantanos de El Chorro (A-357 and MA-451) in the municipality of Ardales. This route is about 55 kms. And it takes about 54 minutes.
There is another route from Antequera to the Valley of Abdalajís (A-343) and from there to El Chorro Station (MA-4401). This route has narrower and shorter roads (about 34 km in 45 minutes).
You can also access from Ronda coming from the province of Cádiz (A-367) until arriving at the municipality of Ardales and later taking the MA-5403. This route is about 60km and takes about an hour.
There are two possibilities to reach the control point.
First option: Leave the car parked in El Chorro (Álora), located at the exit point of the Caminito.
From El Chorro Station you must calculate an hour until you reach the Caminito checkpoint. This time is divided as follows:
a.2) Second option: Leave the car parked in the North, close to the restaurant El Kiosko Ardales.
In this case the visitor will need less time to reach the checkpoint. The visitor must park next to the Restaurant the Kiosk of Ardales and must walk 20 minutes, crossing the pedestrian tunnel, to reach the control point. At the end of the tour, the shuttle bus takes visitors back to the north.
b) By train
To reach Caminito del Rey by train you have to use the Renfe Company.
Trains from Málaga (Maria Zambrano Station) to Álora (El Chorro Station)
– Málaga – El Chorro : 10:00 am – Arrival to El Chorro at 10:47 am
– El Chorro – Málaga : 18:00 pm – Arrival to Málaga at 18:50 pm
We recommend to ckeck the timetable because of changes of Renfe.
Keep in mind that you have to purchase a session between 12:00 and 14:30 for being on time at the station at 18:00 for the train to come back to Málaga.
When you arrive to the Chorro Station, you have to take the shuttle bus from El Chorro Station to Ardales and subsequently you have to walk 15 minutes more from the bus to the control point where the staff will ask for your tickets. Then you can do the trail during 3 hours, more or less and then you will be again in the south, so you will be close to the station.
– Train timetable
– Shuttle-Bus timetable
The Caminito del Rey is located in a natural environment surrounded by marshes, mountains, gorges and valleys that have difficult access. For this reason, it is not possible to reach the beginning of the route by private vehicle, it is obligatory to make this trail, on foot.
The route of the Caminito is linear, not circular, one way and descending from North to South, so the visitor must ensure the return to the starting point (parking) on foot (12 km) or making use of shuttle-bus service between The North access (Ardales) and the South (El Chorro-Alora), or vice versa, depending if you use the North Zone parking or the South Zone parking.
The 2nd january to 25 march 2017 – From 9:30 to 15:00. Tuesday to sunday.
The 26 march to 28 october 2017 – From 9:30 to 17:00. Tuesday to sunday.
The 29 october to 30 december 2017 – From9:30 to 15:00. Tuesdat to sunday.
Mondays closed (depending holidays) , and 24,25 y 31 december and first of january.
1.- El Caminito del Rey es una infraestructura rehabilitada para poder disfrutar de una actividad de turismo activo, actividad que se desarrolla en un medio natural. Por tanto, le es inherente el factor riesgo y/o un cierto grado de esfuerzo físico o destreza, aspectos que son asumidos por sus visitantes en el momento que deciden realizarlo. Como consecuencia de lo anterior, se recomienda llevar:
2.- Las personas visitantes, en función de la hora seleccionada, deben prever un posible almuerzo (bocadillos o alimentos elaborados), ya que no se puede hacer una vez se ha accedido por las pasarelas al no existir espacios habilitados para el mismo ni sería recomendable una parada ya que influiría en la fluidez de las visitas. Por consiguiente, debe hacerse antes o después de entrar por las pasarelas.
3.- Las personas visitantes deben tener en cuenta que desde que se entra en el recorrido hasta que se sale del mismo no existe una zona de cuartos de baños, algo que también debe preverse antes de acceder al equipamiento.
4.- Dada la duración del recorrido y la existencia de tramos con acusado desnivel, que están debidamente indicados tanto al inicio como al final del mismo (perfil del recorrido), se desaconseja el tránsito por El Caminito a toda persona que no cuente con la adecuada preparación física, así como a quien padezca o crea padecer de vértigo (las pasarelas son estrechas, hay una importante altura y en la zona de Álora se atraviesa un puente colgante) o de enfermedades relacionadas con el corazón, el aparato respiratorio o locomotor o que esté sometida a tratamiento médico cuya medicación resulte coincidente con la duración de la visita o entre cuyos efectos secundarios se incluya alguno de los anteriores. Además, el acceso con menores de edad no emancipados/as exigirá la supervisión y responsabilidad del progenitor y/o representante legal o tutor/a durante el tiempo del recorrido.
5.- Al ser una actividad desarrollada en un medio natural rodeado de montañas, pueden producirse pequeños desprendimientos de roca por lo que se debe estar atento a los mismos.
ATTENTION: The path El Caminito del Rey is linear not circular. This is why you need to make sure to come back to the start on your own. This situation might change in following months when the infrastructures get improved, car parks are built and other alternative means of transport, such as buses or coaches that can take visitors to the southern or northern entrance, are organized.
The ticket with date, time needs to be presented when entering El Caminito del Rey.
Minors must be with responsible adults and need to have their ticket and ID, passport or corresponding identification at all times. The ticket has to be handed at the exit as well.
Person in possession of ticket will have civil liability insurance that will cover any accident along the trail except those provoked by failure to comply with established regulations or those that are visitor’s fault.
Visitors who have previously booked their tickets need to arrive at the access points at least half an hour earlier than written on the booking receipt so groups could be formed.
Visitors with tickets shall go directly to the trail through the entrance placed in the Municipalitie of Ardales. These will be indicated by signs. It will only be possible to access the path at the authorized places, while the entrance at any other spot, especially along the railway, is absolutely forbidden. The County Council and the corresponding organization in charge of the spot will be absolved from any responsibility in the case of that kind of actions.
Visitors are obliged to put on correctly the safety equipment they will be provided with at the entrance.
Everybody should walk on the right side of the trail, above all, along the boardwalks. There is to be careful when walking next to the rail that protects from falling down the gorge in order to avoid hazard.
Visitors, climbers and other people who come to El Caminito del Rey Path, and the nature reserve Desfiladero de los Gaitanes have to obey these norms as well as those established by the responsible environmental consultancy.
Considering that the route is in protected natural environment, and it stretches along narrow and high walkways, especially the boardwalks, and also for safety reasons, it is forbidden:
to carry a child or other person, no matter their age is, at any part of the boardwalks.
to use a harness or to be tied to a cable on the boardwalks, as this might put obstacles in the way of other people who transit it and can make them fall down the precipice.
to carry backpacks, bags or any other big object included sticks and crutches.
not to use properly security equipment that is given at the access points to the boardwalks.
to use umbrella instead of a raincoat, cagoule or other waterproof clothes when it rains.
to drop litter.
to make a fire.
to consume alcohol or have any kind of food which is not mentioned in the above suggestions.
to take photos or videos with a tripod or to use cameras and equipment that can block other visitors’ way.
use drones or similar machines, except when authorized by the correspondent environmental consultancy, as this natural beauty spot is an important birds sanctuary.
to come with animals.
to swim in the river or its ponds.
to go to the canals tunnels.
to leave the path which is in use in Hoyo Valley because there is the risk of landslide.
to pull up plants or its parts.
to shout or listen to loud music.
to take your clothes or shoes off and to lie down.
to damage rocks or other geological elements such as fossils.
to paint or write on structures or natural elements.
to scatter deceased people’s ashes.
to come with a pram / baby carriage, pushchairs, strollers or similar.
to come with children younger than eight.
to sell and resell tickets or booking receipts or its forgeries.
to come with shoes no appropiate to have a walk, specially flip-flops and helled shoes.
At the access points and during the visit, the rules are to be followed by everyone, as well as the indications given by the staff from the Control and Information Section and from the security guards. Please, take necessary measures to prevent falling down and keep the area clean.
People can only move in the areas which are authorized and indicated for that purpose. Therefore, you have to respect the banning and information signs.
Those who do not respect the above rules can be expelled from the area by the responsible personnel or authorities.
The corresponding organization has the authority to close, limit or temporarily suspend visits, even during the opening hours and days, for safety’s matters, and in order to preserve the place, or because of refurbishment works, weather or some circumstances beyond anybody’s control. There are no rights of compensation for the people affected by these changes.
Nonetheless, regulations, rules or suggestions given by the employees who manage the trail, environmental agents, or state security officers are compulsory.
All the information related to this active tourism infrastructure, as well as changes, alterations, or incidents that happen when accessing the area will be provided at the website of the path.