Malaga - El Chorro. The way to King's path

The easiest way to the King's path (Caminito del Rey) starts in Malaga, from the train station Maria Zambrano.

Malaga. Train station Maria Zambrano (Estacion Maria Zambrano)

Train to station El Chorro departs at 10:05 daily, the journey time is 42 minutes. A one-way ticket costs € 4.85, it can be purchased from the ticket office or machine, as well as through the website of the Spanish Railways Renfe.

Train Malaga - El Chorro. Rural landscape

return train departs from El Chorro at 18:03.

Train Malaga - El Chorro. Rural landscape

Try not to be late, as another opportunity to leave will be gone. If you do not take into account a taxi, of course.

Train Malaga - El Chorro. Rural landscape

If You  will have time to run the Trail early, you can leave and 15:13, but this is unlikely.

Train Malaga - El Chorro. Rural landscape

During the train trip you can admire agricultural landscapes of Andalusia.

Train Malaga - El Chorro. Rural landscape

Spurs of the mountain massif of the Cordillera Betika

The spurs of the mountain massif of the Cordillera Betika

Valley of Guadalete river.

Valley of Guadalete river

Our train arrived to El Chorro station. It is a small village.

Railway station El Chorro (Estacion El Chorro)

El Chorro located on the shore of Tajo de La Encantada reservoir.

El Chorro. The reservoir of the Tajo de La Encantada (Embalse Tajo de la Encantada)

Near the El Chorro village is southern entrance of the Caminito del Rey, but my ticket indicated northern entrance. There goes a special shuttle bus, its stop next to the railway platform.  

El Chorro

I paid bus fare when online reservation, visit the Royal Path, it costs 1.5 euros. When boarding the bus cut the coupon from the printout of the reservation. I do not know if it is possible to pay on the spot, I did not see it, all the tourists were with printouts of reservations. Though, probably, it is possible to leave - with me in the train there were two girls, they had no reservation at all, however passed a track even a little before me. The clock was about 11, in my reservation was the time 13: 30, because I was in no hurry to take the queue for boarding (and in vain, I will say later), as the buses go every half hour (schedule). While I was standing near the bus stop and wondering where to go, a crowd of tourists who arrived on the train with me, boarded the bus, and the employee who checked the tickets turned his eyes on me, inviting me to climb into the cabin too. Well, if invited, must go, especially because it offered an exclusive place - a folding chair next to the driver.   

El Chorro

We cross the Tajo de La Encantada dam.

Dam of the Tajo de La Encantada (Tajo de la Encantada Dam)

This dam forms the reservoir of the same name.

El Chorro. The reservoir of the Tajo de La Encantada (Embalse Tajo de la Encantada)

The road runs along right bank of reservoir.

El Chorro

Ahead rock massif, cut by Guadalhorce river.

El Chorro

The first object worthy of attention - pumped storage power plant.

Pumped storage power plant Tajo de La Encantada (Central del Tajo de la Encantada)

Power station deserves a separate article about it later.

El Chorro

But the valley itself in which we have to go.

El Chorro. The gorge of Gaitanes (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes)

Path clinging to a steep rock, called the bus revival.

El Chorro. The gorge of Gaitanes (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes)

Gorge is often called El Chorro, named the train station, however his real name "Gorge of the Gaitanes" (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes).

El Chorro. The gorge of Gaitanes (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes)

Now you can see the suspension bridge, one of the exciting parts of the route.

El Chorro. The gorge of Gaitanes (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes)

The trail is still completely deserted, from the newly opened northern entrance to go 3-4 hours.

El Chorro. The gorge of Gaitanes (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes)

Rate the grandeur of nature's creations, the height of the cliffs here are about 150 meters.

El Chorro. The gorge of Gaitanes (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes)

Railway bridge at the entrance to the El Chorro tunnel.

Railway bridge at the entrance to the tunnel to El Chorro.

Then the road narrows, passing on a narrow terrace above the Granado stream, buses are leaving one by one.

the Village of Villaverde (Villaverde)

Ahead a tiny village Villaverde.

the Village of Villaverde (Villaverde)

Church of Our Lady (Ermita de Nuestra Señora de Villaverde) is one of the attractions of cycling and walking route El Chorro - Bobastro. I initially made plans to go through it, but it needs another full day.

Church of our lady of Villaverde (Ermita de Nuestra Señora de Villaverde)

Villaverde road goes over to the other side of the stream Granado, now a steep rock overhang on the right side.

the Village of Villaverde (Villaverde)

Top Pico de Convento, 670 metres above sea level.

Mount Pico de Convento (Convento de Pico)

Black rocks reminded me of the craters of Etna volcano, wich I "conquered" last autumn.

Mount Pico de Convento (Convento de Pico)

The road bends around Pico de Cueva, which can be translated as "Mountain caves".

Mountain caves (Cuevo de Pico)

Indeed, in the rocks you can see a lot of voids.

Mountain caves (Cuevo de Pico)

Another dangerous area, steep turn, a hidden rock. This Audi had to take back to miss our bus.

Mountain caves (Cuevo de Pico)

In turn can see the plot is totally smooth rocks, resembling ice "mutton foreheads" of Norway and Karelia.

Mountain caves (Cuevo de Pico)

And these rocks, presumably, the same origin - this gully from the top of Kumo down an ancient glacier.

Mountain caves (Cuevo de Pico)

We leave on the left a huge construction site camping - around the Royal trail, which became available to the "non-extreme" public recently, developing infrastructure for active and ecological recreation.

Mountain caves (Cuevo de Pico)

Pass tunnel, over which is located the restaurant El Mirador Ardales. The restaurant terrace offers a wonderful view of the reservoir of the Conde del Guadalhorce.

restaurant El Mirador Ardales

A group of tourists photographed in a Small tunnel (Túnel pequeño), leading to the Royal path.

Small tunnel (Túnel pequeño), lead to the Royal path

Well, our bus pulled up to Acceso Norte, the Northern entrance to the Caminito del Rey.

Royal trail, North entrance (Acceso Norte Caminito del Rey)