The King’s path is located in Spain, in the region of Andalusia, in the province of Málaga, between the municipalities of Antequera, Álora and Ardales.
Being more precise, it is located in the gorges of the Guadalhorce River, becoming one of the most relevant geological phenomena in Spain.
If you are looking for the address to put in your gps, it is the following one:
Parque de Ardales Zona Cuarta, 29552 Ardales, Málaga.
Other option is to write down “Restaurante El Mirador Ardales” in Google maps and start the navigation
Caminito del rey location is ideal to visit from the surroundings: it is just one hour driving from Málaga, Benalmádena, Torremolinos, Fuengirola, Antequera, Ronda and Marbella and less than two hours from Granada, Torre del Mar, Nerja Córdoba and Seville.
The opening days in Caminito del Rey are from Tuesday to Sunday all year around (Mondays are closed). So we recommend to organize your trip to Malaga visiting the city or other areas on Mondays, when the kings path is close.
In the winter season the opening hours are from 9:30 am until 2:30 pm. In the summer season the schedule is from 9:30 a.m. until 4:30 a.m.
The route goes in the way of the river so you will mainly descend during the walk.
As you can see in the map, Caminito del rey begins at the confluence of the reservoirs of the Lord of Guadalhorce, Guadalhorce and Guadalteba.
It crosses the Gaitanejo Gorge, the Gaitanes Gorge and ends in the village of El Chorro.
It can only be done in this direction since the official entrance is in the northern access, where it is necessary to show the tickets at the booked time.
The total route of Caminito del Rey is approximately 8 kms, from the parking area to the town of El Chorro. The duration is approximately 3 hours in total, including stops.
The trail is quite comfortable, so you do not need special equipment. King’s walk is a very flat and easy hike that is suitable for all ages and physical conditions.
Caminito del Rey starts with an elevation of 400 meters above the sea level and it ends at 300 meters. You will go in the same direction than the Guadalhorce river so you will mainly descend during the hike. There is just a very short steep area with stairs at the very end of the hike.
The elevation of the Kings walkway and the suspension bridge in the Gaitanes gorge is 120 meters over the river at the highest part which makes the hike absolutely breathtaking.
Caminito del Rey walkway is an old service path built in 1901 in the Los Gaitanes Gorge for the passage of hydroelectric company workers that began operating in the area in 1921, after the construction of the Conde del Guadalhorce reservoir. The workers had, among other things, to maintain the water channel and other facilities located in the gorges.
The history books recall that it was the King Alfonso XIII who inaugurated the hydroelectric complex in 1921 and declared the engineer, Rafael Benjumea, new Lord of Guadalhorce. That is why since then the path took the name of Caminito del Rey and the reservoir took the name of Lord of Guadalhorce reservoir.
The kings path was abandoned in the 60s once the canal that crosses the area was discarded for water transfer between the reservoirs and the El Chorro hydroelectric power station. After that, the Caminito del Rey began to deteriorate and be known as the most dangerous path in the world. Adventurers from all over the world started to come to this place in search of strong emotions.
Due to the the tragedies and accidents in the área, the regional government decided to close the kings path and to destroy the southern access in 2010. In 2015, after a year of work, the new gangway was inaugurated, making the Caminito del Rey one of the most important tourist attractions on the Costa del Sol.
First thing you will ask yourself is how to get there. If you want to get to Caminito del Rey from Malaga by car you have to take the A-357 road that crosses the Guadalhorce valley.
Once you pass the town of Ardales, you have to take the access road to the Guadalhorce reservoir until you reach the parking areas located in El Kiosko restaurant and El Mirador restaurant.
The distance from Malaga to Caminito del Rey is 56 kilometers.
If you do not have a car, the best way to visit Caminito del Rey is to join the different excursions in small companies that leave from Malaga, such as Málaga Activa Tours, with small groups of 8 people max.
In this way, you will avoid crowded hours and long trips in a bus that stop by at all the hotels on the Costa del Sol.
If you are departing from Fuengirola, Benalmádena or Torremolinos, you should take the A-7 motorway to Malaga and then turn to Campillos on the A-357 road.
Once you pass the town of Ardales, you have to take the access road to the Guadalhorce reservoir until you reach the parking areas located in El Kiosko restaurant and El Mirador restaurant. The distance from Malaga to Caminito del Rey is 56 kilometers.
If you do not have a car, the best way is to take the suburban train to Malaga and join the excursions in small groups that depart from Malaga. Malaga Activa Tours, with small groups of 8 people maximum, departs very close to the train stop “Alameda Principal”.
The distance from Fuengirola to Caminito del Rey is 75 kilometers, 65 km from Benalmádena and 55 km from Torremolinos.
To get to Caminito del Rey from Nerja or Torre del Mar, you should take the A-7 motorway until Málaga and once you cross it, take the A-327 road.
If you do not have a car, other option is to go to Malaga by bus and join the different excursions that leave from the center of Malaga.
The distance from Nerja is about 115 kilometers until Caminito del Rey.
If you are in Madrid and you want to visit the Kings path, you have to take the high speed train from Madrid to Malaga. Malaga´s train station, Maria Zambrano is just 10 minutes walking until the meeting point of the excursions.
Malaga Activa Tours depart almost every day from number 3 of Calle Cerezuela which makes it possible to join the Caminito del Rey tour even if you wake up in Madrid.
There is a parking in the north access (2 euros), beside the entry of El Mirador restaurant. We can consider that this is the starting point since we start the walk here.
From the northern parking there are 1.5 kms to the official entrance of Caminito del Rey. It happens very often that the parking is full. If that is the case, you still have the option to park inside the tunnel which is beside the El Kiosko restaurant, or in the parking area at the top of El Mirador restaurant.
You have the three options in the map. Do not park beside the road, it is very narrow and the buses can hit your car.
There is another free parking in the south entrance of Caminito del Rey, very close to El Chorro and just beside the reservoir. From there, you have to walk five minutes until the shuttle bus stop, which is beside the bar La Estación El Chorro.
If what you want is to make the visit on your own you can book the tickets for Caminito del Rey on the official website. The price of the entrance tickets in 2020 for the solo visit is 10 euros and the price of the guided tour is 18 euros (transfer from Malaga not included). The entrance fee of the king´s path includes the helmet and the entrance for the whole day.
Keep in mind that it is necessary to do your reservations months in advance because there is a daily limit of 1,000 visitors and tickets are usually sold out, especially in high season. You should add the return shuttle bus (€ 1.55), car rental (+ € -30 / day) and gasoline (€ 20 from Malaga) to the ticket price. If you think about all these costs to book a guided tour worth it.
If you did not book your tickets with months in advance and everything is sold out, you can do your booking in this link and take a guided tour from Malaga.
In winter it is possible to buy tickets on the same day early in the morning at the entrance and buy them without reservation. The rest of the year, autumn, spring and summer, the demand in kings’ path is so high that it is very difficult to get tickets on the same day or last minute and almost impossible if it is a weekend.
If you have already payed the Caminito del Rey tickets and there is a risk of closing due to weather, you can exchange your tickets for another day or get a refund on the official website www.caminitodelrey.info.
Today, January 2020, the Caminito del Rey visitor center has not opened yet. It is still under construction.
The tour to Caminito del Rey from Malaga can range between 49 euros and 69 euros depending on the season. Food, water, guided tour, transportation, and transfer back to Malaga are included in the trip. We would recommend you to go on a small group because crossing the gorge in a 55 people group is not the best way.
We recommend tours with guides that leave from Malaga, such as the one with Malaga Activa Tours, since they are small groups of up to 8 people with the same price as excursions in large groups by bus. In addition, you will avoid a long bus trips that stops by at all the hotels on the Costa del Sol.
In Málaga Activa Tours the guided trips to Caminito del Rey in small groups are mainly in english in order to encourage the interaction between our guests. We explain in spanish as well in the tour if you don’t speak english or if you want to practice your spanish with the guide during the king’s path.
The visit to Caminito del Rey from Benalmádena, Torremolinos and Fuengirola can range between 49 euros and 69 euros depending on the season and includes guided tour, transportation, the shuttle bus back to the starting point of Caminito del Rey and back to Malaga.
We recommend taking the morning train to Malaga and joining the tours with guides departing from Malaga, such as the one in Malaga Activa Tours, since they are small groups of up to 8 people with the same price as excursions of 55 people in a bus. The departure point is very close to the train station. In addition, you will avoid long trips in a bus and a crowded Natural Park.
If you want to visit king’s path on your own and have managed to get to El Chorro you must take the shuttle bus (1,5 €) that departs every half an hour to the northern area. You must get off at the El Kiosko restaurant stop and from there take the 1.5 kms Trail until the official entrance of Caminito del Rey.
Do not worry about what to wear in Caminito del Rey. It is not necessary to wear mountain gear or hiking boots in Caminito del rey. With comfortable sport shoes it is more than enough since the walkway is quite comfortable.
In the summer months it is recommended to bring enough water and sun protection, in addition to a small backpack to carry it with yourself. Consider that in Winter can be quite cold early in the mountains so put a jacket into your luggage.
Therefore, you do not need a lot of equipment.
Due to the characteristics of the trail and for security reasons, it has been decided that the age limit in Caminito del Rey is 8 years old.
If you want to make an excursion with your children under 8 years old, you can hire other excursions with rules not as strict like in the Saltillo gorge or El Torcal de Antequera.
Other rules in king’s path to keep in mind is that you cannot use sticks, umbrellas or selfie sticks.
The helmet provided must be worn during the entire hike.
Caminito del Rey is NOT dangerous at all since the new path was opened in 2015. Many people have seen photos and images of the old path with climbers crossing very dangerous steps and don´t go to Caminito del Rey for fear of being in danger.
Nothing is further from reality because the new king’s path is very secure, with no accidents or deaths recorded since it has been opened again.
Since the new path has been opened it has been no deaths or accidents in Caminito del Rey. It was between 2000 and 2010 when the conditions of the trail were very bad, and 10 people died. The most dramatic accident was when three men from El Chorro tried to cross through a zip line until the train line (at the other side of the gorge). The cable could not stand the weight of the three men and it broke. The number of deaths in those years made the Kings path to be known as the most dangerous path in world.
Although the Caminito del Rey is not dangerous, it is not advisable if you are afraid of heights or very pronounced vertigo. There are many travelers who in the last two years have done the excursion to face their fear of heights and have ended up very happy to finish it. Perhaps, the suspension bridge is the most critical point for those who suffer vertigo. You should know that it is at the very end of the king’s walkway and once there you cannot go back. You must cross the suspension bridge.
If for nothing in the world you want to miss Caminito del Rey during your visit to Malaga, it is better to avoid the months with the worst weather, which are November, December and January. Even so, the probability of closing is low in those months since we are in a region with 300 days of sunshine per year. Only 2% of the days are closed due to the bad weather. If the natural park closes king’s path due to the bad weather Malaga Activa Tours refunds you the money.
In case of storm, rain or strong winds, the organization closes the doors and the traveler can get a refund. If it rains poorly or moderately, Caminito del Rey does not close its doors. In Málaga Activa Tours we provide a poncho coat to each traveler in case it rains so you still can do it.
Every month of the year is appropriate to visit the Caminito del Rey.
In January, February and March, the temperature can range between 5 and 17 degrees in the King’s path. In winter, the temperatures are cool, perfect for hiking.
In April, May and June, the temperature is ideal, between 15 and 25 degrees. The risk of closing is very low, since the weather is usually quite stable.
In the months of July, August and September the heat appears, easily exceeding 30 degrees of temperature. On the hottest days of summer the entrance can be cut between 2 and 4 pm due to danger of dehydration. In Málaga Activa Tours we always avoid the hottest hours on these dates.
In October, November and December we return to temperatures between 10 and 20 degrees. Autumn is again the rainy season but the rains are limited, so the risk of closure remains low.
There are several restaurants in the Caminito del Rey area where you can stop to eat something. El Kiosko Restaurant and El Mirador Restaurant are in the northern area, both with beautiful views to the Conde del Guadalhorce reservoir. In the village of El Chorro, you have La Garganta restaurant and El Chorro Station bar.
There are other interesting areas close to Caminito del Rey. The town of Carratraca is a White village you will cross in the way to King’s path from Malaga. The views to the valley and to the mountains from the city hall are stunning. Carratraca is known for its hot springs with therapeutic properties. You can visit the prehistoric caves of Ardales or the arab ruins in Bobastro.
Ardales is other town close to Caminito del Rey and known for the pork products made in the area and its “Matanza” festival (third weekend of February). A good option is to stop by and have lunch in one of the restaurants in town.
If you visit the King walk during spring or summer, maybe you want to go for a swim in the Conde del Guadalhorce reservoir or to rent a paddle board or a kayak and do a tour around the lake.
Unfortunately, there is no information telephone in Caminito del Rey. All reservations, contact, ticket purchases and questions are answered online. If you have any questions about the King’s path or you want more info, do not hesitate to call us (+34626302234), text through whatsapp, or email us ([email protected]). We will be happy to help you.
At the moment there are not public buses connecting Malaga with Caminito del Rey.
There is a train connection that joins Malaga with El Chorro station. The ticket combined with the entrance costs € 31 but it has the disadvantage that the excursion takes you all day (10h) since the return by train is very late (6h pm), arriving in Malaga at 7h pm. In addition, you have to pay the shuttle bus to the north entrance.
Hiring a small group tour from Malaga, the excursion takes place in around 5h30 minutes in total. In that case you have the rest of the day to visit other areas in Malaga. You can get more information on the Renfe website about how to get to King’s path.
As we have already mentioned, we truly believe the best way to visit Caminito del Rey is hiring an excursion from Malaga in a small group (maximum of 8 people). The King’s walk passes through a very narrow walkway and doing it in a group of 25-50 people is a mistake because you do not enjoy the scenery.
In Málaga Activa Tours we always try avoid the crowded hours. The trip from Malaga is much faster in a van (45 minutes) and fun is guaranteed as it is a more intimate experience. In addition, the picnic with local products is one of the best rated things of our trip and all explanations are in both English and Spanish.
The excursion with Malaga Activa Tours lasts from 5h30-6h, and not the whole day, being the fastest trip and not having to make long waits, so the rest of the day you can enjoy visiting other points of interest in Malaga.