Declared as the first national park in Andalusia, it’s one of the most impressive natural areas in Spain, also hosting one of the longest range of caves in the country, with a cave that’s 4 Kms long and an entrance height of 60 metres.
The Grazalema region is very well-known for being one of the most rainy areas in Spain, which means it has a unique flora, with a magnificent forest with a rare Spanish Fir tree, a relic from the tertiary period.
A large part of the park (3000 hectares) is a natural reserve area, with a fragile ecosystem, Spanish Fir forests and colonies of black vultures. The conservation rules here are stricter than in the rest of the park and the visits are supervised in its number and in the date they are organised. During the periods in which the forest fires are more common, the entrance is forbidden. To visit the rest of the park (except for the ‘Sendero de Garganta Verde’ -the green throat path-), you must obtain a permit from an authorised Active Tourism company; throughout the rest of the year you can obtain this permit from an office inside the information office in El Bosque.
The main rivers in the Grazalema mountains are: Guadalete, Guadiaro, Tavizna and Ubrique.
The Grazalema park is particularly well-known for its birds, specially raptors. One of the largest colonies of griffon vultures are found in Garganta Verde, in the Sierra del Pinar to be precise.
The Grazalema caves also host an important amount of bats.
We’ll also find Egyptian mongoose, badgers, foxes, genets, roe deer and Spanish ibex.
The valley sides are densely wooded with cork oaks, holm oaks, wild olive trees and pine forests, with an undergrowth of Mediterranean shrubs such as mastic trees, strawberry trees and dwarf fan palms. Along the rivers like the Río El Bosque and streams there are poplars, willows, alders, elms and oleanders. On rockier slopes there are stonecrops and saxifrages.
The park is easily accessible either walking or by car. If you’re leaving Malaga, you must head towards Ronda, and once you’re there, head towards El Bosque. The main road that crosses the mountain is the A-372 that goes from Ronda to El Bosque. The A-373 connects Ubrique to El Bosque on the western side.
There’s an office where we can get information, maps, routes and any necessary permits. It’s situated in Cortes de la Frontera (952 154 599), and there’s another one in El Bosque (956 727 029).