Parque Ardales travel guide

Parque Ardales travel guide

Visit this unique and picturesque area

Ardales - Photo by Javier Prieto (

The park in Ardales is known for its beautiful landscapes. The panorama of landscape is distinguished by the three large reservoirs. The reservoirs are El Conde de Guadalhorce, El Guadalteba and El Guadalhorce.

The Ardales area is around 59km away from Malaga itself, for this reason we recommend renting a car at Malaga airport to explore this area.

The El Conde de Guadalhorce reservoir banks attract a huge interest from tourists, with the Parque Ardales camp-site which has accommodation for 1,000 guests.

One of the other beauty spots in the province of Málaga is the gorge known as the Garganta or Desfiladero de los Gaitanes, which is reached by a two kilometre walk from the campsite.

The narrowest part of the gorge is an old service road that runs along at a height of around 100m. This picturesque path is known as the "Caminito del Rey".

You can read more about in the parks and green areas of Malaga in our nature guide.

Things to do and see at Parque Ardales

Water Activities around the reservoir area

The reservoirs at Ardales are major attraction for visitors of the area, as they offer different types of water sports like kayaking, canoeing or pedal boats where equipment is available for hire.

There are some companies situated on the lakeside bank which offer classes and tours of the area with qualified instructors.

Hiking & Trekking around Ardales

Ardales is a popular destination for hikers and trekkers alike, there are plenty of routes around the lakes and reservoirs.

Those looking for a bit more of a challenge may want to try the old service road known as ‘Caminito del Rey’.

Ardales and its caves

The cave was in the Ardales area was discovered in 1821, but it was not until 1918 that Abbot Breuil found and studied its prehistoric paintings and carvings.

The cave is 1.5 kilometres long and continues chambers and galleries such as the Gran Sala, the Galería, the Chamber of El Arquero, the Sala del Lago, the Gallery of El Espolón, the gallery of the Grabados (carvings), and the Sala de las Manos (hands). The interior contains mazes of columns, underground lakes and beautiful formations of stalactites and stalagmites.

This cave is also known as the cave of Doña Trinidad or La Calinoria. It is reached by a 3-kilometre track which begins outside Ardales on the Carratraca road.

If you enjoy caves then you might want to visit Nerja as one of the popular tourist attractions areas of the town.



Avda. Malaga, 1
Tel. 952 45 80 46

Monday - CLOSED
Saturday 10:00 - 14:00 & 16:00 - 18:00
Sundays 9:00 - 14:00


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