The Caminito del Rey is one of the most spectacular natural sites in Malaga and Spain.
This magnificent natural site, which is one of the most important climbing areas in Europe, was for years one of the most dangerous trails in the world due to its very poorly maintained walkways.
Since 2015 and after a year of renovation, the Caminito del Rey is now open to the general public and is currently one of the most visited natural areas in the province of Malaga.
Here is everything you need to know to plan an excursion to this beautiful spot.
If you like nature, hiking and do not suffer from vertigo, we strongly recommend you to visit this emblematic place. You will love it!
The aerial path called “Caminito del Rey” runs about 100 metres above the Desfiladero de los Gaitanes.
The aerial path has been remodelled with pieces of wood and metal anchors drilled into the rock. Some sections have a glass floor so that visitors can see the gorge and also the old footbridge, which remains as an example of architectural archaeology.
The current travel route of the Caminito del Rey is 7.7 kilometres, of which 4.8 kilometres are forest access tracks and 2.9 kilometres of footbridges.
This is a linear, non-circular, one-way route, descending from north to south, starting in the municipality of Ardales and ending in the municipality of Alora.
The approximate time to complete the entire route (section from the gate of one footbridge to the other, plus the paths or forest tracks to get to and from the area) is between 3 and 4 hours.
Due to the considerable distance and gradient, this route is not recommendable for people without a minimum of good health, as well as small children.
Parking and shuttle bus
If you arrive by car, we suggest you park in any of the car parks provided for this purpose. Take into account that you will have to return for your vehicle when you finish the tour using the shuttle bus.
You can park near the entrance to the Caminito del Rey in a municipal car park. The price is currently 2 € and you can find it here.
From there you can access the control gate by two paths: One is 1.5 km long and the other is 2.7 km long. The approximate time to get to the entrance of the Caminito de Rey is 20 and 35 minutes respectively.
There is a shuttle bus service between the north access (Ardales) and the south (El Chorro, Alora).
At the end of the Caminito de Rey, the shuttle bus stop is 300 metres away. The price of the ticket is currently 2,50 Euros. Please note that it is not possible to pay by credit card.
The bus runs from 8:30 am to 5 pm, every half hour. The journey time to the municipal car park next to El Kiosko Restaurant is about 20 minutes.
Do I have to be fit?
The Caminito del Rey is an active tourism activity, with a certain degree of physical effort. It is therefore recommendable to be in minimum shape.
The route is not recommendable for anyone who is not physically fit, who suffers from vertigo, heart or respiratory diseases or who is undergoing medical treatment at the same time as the duration of the visit.
You can purchase tickets through the official website.
In order to visit the Caminito del Rey, you need the corresponding ticket, which includes the name of the ticket holder and their ID card or passport number, as well as the day and time.
Visitors and accompanied minors must carry the ticket with them at all times, together with their ID card or equivalent document, for any possible checks by the Caminito staff during the visit.
The ticket is also necesary in order to be able to leave the path.
Visitors with reservations should arrive at the access area (at the entrance gates to the walkways behind the control booths) at least 30 minutes before the time showing on the booking voucher for the visit, in order to organise the groups.
General admission: 10 €
Ticket + Guided tour: 18 €
1. The Caminito del Rey is an infrastructure that has been restored in order to be able to enjoy an active tourism activity, an activity that takes place in a natural environment. Therefore, it is inherent to it the risk factor and/or a certain degree of physical effort or skill, aspects that visitors have to assume at the moment they decide to do it.
2. It is recommended to bring:
- Water or any type of energy drink.
- Chocolates, energy bars, nuts and fruit.
- Sun protection cream and a hat, especially in summer.
- Clothing appropriate to the season and, above all, footwear suitable for hiking.
3. Visitors should make provision for a possible lunch (sandwiches or prepared food). It cannot be taken once the walkways have been accessed as there are no spaces set aside for it, nor would a stop be advisable as it would affect the flow of visits. Therefore, you will have to eat your snack before or after entering the walkways.
4. Visitors should bear in mind that from the moment they enter the route until they leave it, there is no toilet area.
5. Given the length of the route and the existence of some steep sections, it is not advisable for anyone who is not physically fit to walk along the Caminito, nor for anyone who suffers or thinks they may suffer from vertigo (the footbridges are narrow, there is a considerable height and in the Álora area there is a suspension bridge).
6. As this is an activity in a natural environment surrounded by mountains, small rock falls may occur, so you should be aware of them.
7. The route of the Caminito del Rey is linear, not circular, so you must make sure you return to the starting point by your own means.
8. Only children over 8 years of age may enter the area.
9. You can´t enter the Caminito del Rey in the company of animals.
Climbing in El Chorro and the Gaitanes Gorge
El Chorro is one of the most emblematic climbing areas in Andalusia.
For decades it was a very popular and much frequented site among climbers, despite being closed to the general public.
Unfortunately, several fatal accidents gave it a bad reputation and the site was closed to prevent unauthorised access.
After its refurbishment in 2015, the Caminito del Rey is now open to the general public for a fee.
The area has a large number of routes of all difficulties. There are short sport routes and long routes. It is also ideal for the winter months with good temperature conditions.
Regulations for access to the climbing sector
Those wishing to climb have free access to the Caminito del Rey.
To do so, when passing through the control booth, they must show their valid federation card and civil liability insurance.
Via ferrata Caminito del Rey
Outside the paid area there is also a beautiful via ferrata. It has stunning views and is equipped with steps, a Tibetan bridge, a Nepalese bridge and a 35-metre zip line.
The route takes about 3 to 4 hours. The via ferrata is free access for people initiated in this sport and with the necessary equipment.
If you are interested in active tourism in Malaga you can book the tour with guide and equipment included in this link.
Reservoir Conde del Guadalhorce
The whole area is a paradise for nature lovers and hikers. The Conde del Guadalhorce reservoir, also known as El Chorro reservoir, stands out for its spectacular turquoise waters.
It is not only very popular for hiking routes under extensive pine forests.
It is also in fact the only inland beach to be awarded a Blue Flag.
The reservoir is ideal for cooling off in summer and there are several places to rent canoes and other water activities. There is also a campsite.
How to get there
From Malaga by car
Renting a car at Malaga airport is the easiest way to get there. Leaving from Malaga city take the A-357 towards MA-444, passing through the municipalities of Cartama, Pizarra, Carratraca and Ardales.
This route is about 60 km long and takes about 50 minutes by car. In Pizarra you can also take the road to Alora and from there head to El Chorro Station on the A-343.
That route is a little longer and takes a little over an hour. This road is narrower and winding.
El Chorro Train Station
From El Chorro train station (Alora) you have to walk about 2 kilometres passing the hermitage of Villaverde, the campsite and the iron bridge before reaching the start of the Caminito del Rey.
El Chorro station is served daily by 3 medium-distance trains between Malaga and Seville. The journey takes about 40 minutes. Buy your ticket online at Renfe.
360º virtual visit of the Caminito del Rey
If you have always wanted to visit the Caminito del Rey, but you haven’t been there yet or you have vertigo, you will be delighted to know that now you can visit it virtually.
The Malaga Provincial Council has published a 360º tour of this spectacular route. The experience allows you to enjoy this natural landscape with spectacular images, audio-visual resources and detailed information.
By means of photos we can now visit virtually in 360º the most characteristic places of the Caminito del Rey along almost 8 kilometres:
Its paths and walkways, the glass balcony, the suspension bridge, the water viaduct, the underground section through the canal gate, the Valle del Hoyo, the bat shelter, the Gaitanejo path, the Cambutas viewpoint, the Desfiladero de Gaitanejo marmitas and the El Chorro station halt.
In addition, along the route there are 40 icons that allow you to view photographs or photo galleries, videos and even brief information about each place, which you can expand if you want to know more about the site in question and you can see each point on a map, a normal aerial view or a satellite view.
The tour is available for computers, mobiles and tablets, in Spanish and soon also in English, French and German.
Access the virtual tour of the Caminito del Rey.