Caminito del Rey, a walk of vertigo

Located between the municipalities of Álora, Ardales and Antequera, in the province of Málaga, is the Caminito del Rey, one of the most intimidating and spectacular trails of Andalusia and Spain. The Caminito del Rey is a route that runs through the walls of the Desfiladero de los Gaitanes and that, attached to the rock, runs almost 8 kilometers. It is located 100 meters above the Guadalhorce River and is approximately 1 meter wide. Without a doubt it is a place that lovers of rural tourism and the heights should not miss.

History of Caminito del Rey

The Caminito del Rey was built under the necessity of El Chorro Hydroelectric Society to have an access between the Salto del Gaitanejo and Salto del Chorro. In this way, it facilitated both the passage of maintenance workers and the transport of materials and the monitoring of these. The construction of the Caminito del Rey lasted four years, beginning in 1901 and ending in 1905. In the year 1921, King Alfonso XIII visited this path for the inauguration of the Guadalhorce-Guadalteba Reservoirs, crossing the path from the Dam of Conde of Guadalhorce. It was from this moment that people baptized it as "Caminito del Rey", a name that is maintained today.

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Caminito del Rey today

For a long time, the great deterioration of the Caminito del Rey caused by the passage of time, caused that the route was left without railing and that there was only one supporting beam. Which has helped to create the black legend of the Caminito del Rey, after the death of some hikers. This is one of the main reasons why it was so famous. Fortunately, between 2014 and 2015 the Caminito del Rey has been rehabilitated, building a completely safe new footpath. In fact, Lonely Planet (one of the largest publishers of travel guides in the world) chose it as one of the best places to visit in 2015.

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Route of the Caminito del Rey

The route of the Caminito del Rey lasts between 3 and 4 hours. It is a linear route, not circular, so visitors have to ensure a way back to the starting point. This can be through the buses that connect the north entrance and the south entrance of the Caminito del Rey and for which you can buy the ticket at the beginning of the trail.

If you decide to take as a starting point the access by Álora (south entrance) to do the Caminito del Rey, you should know that most of the route is up, after making a first descent to the start of the footpath. If you leave from Ardales (northern entrance), most of the route is in descent, except for the final stretch once we have passed the Ignacio Mena suspension bridge and arrived at the Gaitanes area.

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Recommendations for the Caminito del Rey

To make the visit to the Caminito del Rey it is advisable to reserve the entrance before through the website, since only 600 people are allowed to pass each day.

To be able to do the complete tour of the Caminito del Rey, it is recommended to go with comfortable clothes and adapted to the weather. Access can be restricted in case of temporary or repairs, but this will be communicated through the web.

To get to Caminito del Rey you can choose road or train. Currently there are several regional trains that pass through El Chorro. By road you can choose to go from Ardales taking the exit to El Chorro or from the Pizarra junction following the signs to Álora - El Chorro.

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