Caminito del Rey

Welcome to our comprehensive Caminito del Rey guide on planning your visit to the breathtaking Caminito del Rey. We’ve curated essential tips to ensure your journey is smooth and memorable, from securing tickets to navigating the stunning trails.

1. Alternative Caminito del Rey Booking Methods

In the case general and guided tour caminito del rey  (“Visita Guiada”) tickets are no longer available on the official website, there’s an excellent alternative – Get Your Guide! This platform provides numerous organized trips from different locations across the Costa Del Sol and other main cities. Explore the guided tours available for the Caminito del Rey.

Additionally, for those who still want a self-guided experience, showing up at the ticket booth remains a possibility, but it comes with a bit of risk. Continue reading the next point for more details.

2. Caminito del Rey Ticket Availability at the Gate

El Caminito del Rey is open from Tuesday to Sunday, with closures on December 24th, 25th, 31st, and January 1st. Purchasing general entrance tickets at the gate is subject to availability and is not guaranteed. It’s advisable to be prepared for potential uncertainty regarding ticket availability upon your arrival. Keep in mind that stewards may restrict on-the-spot ticket purchases, especially on fully booked days. Therefore, plan accordingly and be prepared for potential uncertainty about ticket availability when you arrive.

3. Meeting Points and Caminito del Rey Access

When you’ve booked a guided tour through the official website of Caminito del Rey, your meeting point will be at the ticket booth. The journey to this point takes  approximately 25 minutes or up to an hour walk, depending on the path you choose. Here are the available options:

Caminito del Rey Access 1. Tunnel 1, the Gaitanejo path, 50 minutes (2,7 km) – just near the Kiosko Restaurant.

– Caminito del Rey Access 2. Tunnel 2, the Gaitanejo track, 20-25 minutes (1,5 Km) – 200 m walk from the Kiosko Restaurant.

Upon arrival, this is where your tickets will be validated, and you’ll pick up your helmets. Be at least 30 minutes beforehand at the caminito del rey entrance to allow for any necessary preparations. 

Access 1 - 2.7km
Access 1 - longer route
Access 2 - 1.5km
Access 2 - shorter route

It’s important to note that if you’ve chosen a third-party guided tour, there might be a different arrangement for the meeting point, so it’s advisable to check with the specific tour provider.

4. One-Way Access and Adventure to Caminito del Rey

The Caminito del Rey is organized into seven distinct sections, each with its unique name and characteristics:

Each section offers a unique perspective, ensuring a diverse and memorable experience along the trail of Caminito del Rey.

The Caminito del Rey route follows a one-way trail, commencing from the Kings Chair/Reservoir/El Kiosko Restaurant side rather than the Chorro side. Upon reaching the Chorro side, a shuttle bus is available for your return journey to the caminito del rey starting point, with buses operating approximately every half hour. Notably, you don’t need to take a shuttle bus to the train station. Instead, enjoy a leisurely 30-minute stroll from the end of the walk to the El Chorro train station.

5. Caminito del Rey Transportation Tips

Transportation plays an important role in ensuring a smooth visit. Here are tips to help you navigate transportation options for your Caminito del Rey day-trip:

By Train:

For Caminito del Rey train travelers, take a shuttle bus to the Caminito del Rey North access point, which departs every 30 minutes from a stop conveniently situated near the train station. The cash-only ticket costs 2.50 euros. If early morning trains aren’t an option, explore alternatives. Book your tickets via Get Your Guide as it offers the option of private group buses, providing a reliable transportation solution. Additionally, alternatives such as local taxis or Uber can be considered, ensuring flexibility for those who want to arrive early in the morning.

Check your train schedules, if you need to wait for a short period after you completed the hike, no worries, as you can get some tapas and a drink in a bar nearby or at the Hotel Garganta which is right by the train station in El Chorro. Bonus: this restaurant is considered to have one of the best views in Spain.

By Car:

If arriving by car to Caminito del Rey, consider parking near the popular roadside restaurant called “Restaurante el Kiosko”. Parking here by the side of the road is possible although you may have to scout around. Alternatively, park at the P1 municipal park area (see map) or at the new visitor center caminito del rey. 

Guided Tours inclusive Transport:

If you don’t have your own car or prefer to avoid public transportation, consider booking an excursion to Caminito del Rey from your location that includes round-trip transportation. Opting for a guided tour through third-party companies like Get Your Guide not only ensures access and a guided tour but also provides the convenience of inclusive transportation. This option is ideal for those without a car or who prefer to skip the train, allowing direct access to the caminito del rey starting point. 

6. Caminito del Rey Visitor Center

The visitor center is open every day from 8 am to 5 pm, except Mondays. However, opening hours may vary, so it’s advisable to check in advance. Located at Puerto de las Atalayas on the MA 5403 road, the center provides valuable insights into the area’s history, archaeology, and geology. Featuring a large exhibition area and a viewing terrace overlooking the Conde del Guadalhorce reservoir, the center serves as a caminito del rey parking lot (2 euros per day per space) and a hiker welcome center. Don’t be disappointed if the caminito del rey reception center is closed; the Caminito del Rey itself is the main attraction.

The visitor center does not sell Caminito del Rey tickets; these must be purchased online.

7. Caminito del Rey Parking Options

Wondering where to park Caminito del Rey? Consider using designated areas to ensure convenient access to the trailhead.

Parking at Caminito del Rey Entrance (Ardales) 

Use Caminito del Rey Parking 1  (see image below – P1) municipal car park located at GPS coordinates 36.931863, -4.801762, where parking costs 2 euros per space or is free if you manage to find an available space. From there, you can opt for one of the two paths leading to the caminito del rey entrance. After completing the hike, take advantage of the shuttle bus caminito del rey service from El Chorro to return to the caminito del rey parking area. To board the shuttle, purchase a shuttle bus caminito del rey ticket for 2.50 euros in cash, for a smooth and hassle-free conclusion to your adventure.

Parking at the Visitor Center

  1. Caminito del Rey visitor center parking is available at GPS coordinates 36.91464175, -4.807614262 for 2 euros per day per space. To enhance your planning, the caminito del rey official website allows you to  add parking to your general or official guided entry ticket reservation. 

  2. For an efficient and timely visit, it’s recommended to arrive at least an hour to an hour an a half before your scheduled entry time. This parking caminito del rey facility is situated about halfway between the village of El Chorro and the start point of the Caminito del Rey. Considering the time it takes to park, take the shuttle bus, reach the starting area, and walk to the caminito del rey starting point (ticket booth), aiming for a parking time of at least 1.5 hours before your entry is recommended. 

  3. Visitors are welcome to explore additional parking options along the lakeside, starting from the Kiosko Restaurant and extending across the dam to Hotel Posada del Conde. Another paid parking lot near the Mirador restaurant along the lakeside is available just before reaching the Kiosko Restaurant.

  4. An important note: Tickets currently cannot be purchased at this location; they can only be booked online on the caminito del rey official website or at the ticket booth. 

  5. Parking at El Chorro Exit (Álora) 

  1. For parking at the El Chorro exit, use Caminito del Rey Parking 2 (see image below – P2) located at GPS coordinates 36.932480, -4.788978, an hour before your visit. Locate the nearby shuttle bus stop to get to the caminito del rey North access point, pay the 2.50 euros cash-only ticket, and your vehicle awaits at El Chorro after the hike. The shuttle bus from El Chorro to Caminito del Rey starting point takes approximately 15-20 minutes.

Tip: Be prepared with correct change due to reported parking-related issues.

caminito del rey directions
Caminito del Rey map - Photo credit: www.caminitodelrey.info

8. Caminito del Rey Shuttle Bus

You can buy your shuttle bus ticket on the caminito del rey official website (linked to your ticket) or directly at the shuttle bus stop with cash (no card payments) . The 2.50 euro ticket allows you to travel freely in both directions as many times as you need on the day of your visit.  The bus operates from 07:40 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., taking approximately 15-20 minutes to reach El Kiosko Restaurant (Northern Access) from El Chorro (Southern Access) and 6-8 minutes from the visitor center.

The official caminito del rey shuttle bus service from the Visitors Center or El Chorro path exit point drops off passengers by the Restaurante el Kiosko.

Some visitors have reported issues with shuttle charges (2.50 euros) despite pre-purchasing a shuttle ticket online along with the entry ticket through the official website. To prevent problems, ensure you have your tickets ready for inspection or pay the fee and address any concerns afterward.

Conclusion

We hope you find these Caminito del Rey tips useful as you embark on a memorable journey through the stunning landscapes of the Caminito del Rey. Plan ahead, prioritize early arrivals, and enjoy the breathtaking views. If you have any questions or need help, feel free to contact us. Happy exploring!

Thank you for reading: Caminito del Rey: 8 Essential Aspects to Planning Your Visit 

Frequently Asked Questions About Caminito del Rey

Yes, it’s highly recommended to book tickets for Caminito del Rey in advance. Due to its popularity and limited capacity, tickets often sell out quickly. Booking caminito del rey in advance ensures you secure your spot and avoids disappointment on the day of your visit. It’s important to note that visiting Caminito del Rey without ticket is not possible, so it’s best to plan ahead to guarantee entry.

If hiking is a concern, there are alternative ways to experience the beauty of Caminito del Rey. From El Chorro side (Southern Access), you can enjoy excellent views of the walkway and get a closer look at the suspension bridge. The lakeside area near El Kiosko Restaurant also offers stunning views, and you can walk down to the start point (ticket booth) for a closer look.

To visit Caminito del Rey, you’ll need to book tickets in advance through the official website or authorized third party sellers. Plan your transportation to the site near Ardales and Álora in Malaga. province. Arrive early, wear comfortable shoes, follow safety guidelines, and enjoy the stunning scenery!

The duration of your visit to Caminito del Rey can range from 3 to 4 hours, considering historical boardwalks and additional time spent on access routes, shuttle buses, and forest paths.

The best time to visit Caminito del Rey is during spring and fall. We recommend planning your visit for these periods as temperatures are usually mild and pleasant, avoiding the extreme summer heat and colder winter conditions. Additionally, it’s the off-peak season, meaning fewer tourists, allowing you to enjoy the route more peacefully.

Is visiting Caminito del Rey during the summer the only option for you?

One of the main advantages of traveling in summer, especially to destinations like Caminito del Rey, is the longer days. You can make the most of every hour, even if you arrive around noon, providing ample time to leisurely explore the route.

What are the best days for visiting?

Ideally try to visit on weekdays, especially on Wednesdays or Thursdays, as these days typically have fewer visitors compared to weekends. Avoiding public holidays is also a good strategy. Since most people prefer weekends, choosing a weekday allows you a better chance to explore Caminito del Rey with fewer crowds, making it easier to enjoy the experience and capture pictures without much congestion.

Comfortable closed shoes, such as sport or trekking shoes, are required; sandals or heels are not allowed.

Access is only allowed to children over 8 years old. You must bring their original ID or Family Book to verify their age.

Restroom facilities are not available on the walkway, so plan accordingly. Waste must be carried with you until the end of the walk, as there are no trash bins.

1. Official website tickets: For hassle-free entry, have your essential documents in order. It is not necessary to print the tickets, download them and save them on your device. Save the email confirmation from the official website with the reservation number too—it’s your key to tracking. Some people successfully used PDF images on their phones, including barcodes for ticket scanning at the ticket booth.

2. Shuttle tickets:  For shuttle bus tickets (linked to your reservation), check if they are included in the downloaded PDFs. Remember, mobile coverage can be limited, so having offline access to essential documents is crucial. With these considerations, you’re well-prepared for a memorable adventure along the iconic Caminito del Rey. 

Yes, you can wear your own helmet, as long as it is duly approved.

Here are some of our favourites Caminito del Rey restaurants in the area:

  • La Garganta: If you want to have a tasty meal with a beautiful view of mountains and water, go to La Garganta Restaurant. Choose between indoor and outdoor seating, with a strong recommendation for the latter to enhance your dining experience.
  •  
  • Restaurante El Mirador Ardales: For a cozy atmosphere and good vibes, head to El Mirador Ardales, one of the closest restaurants to Caminito del Rey, just a kilometer away. Whether you prefer indoor or outdoor seating, the outdoor area offers a shaded spot with a view of the lake, ensuring a pleasant dining experience.
  •  
  • Mesón Carrión: Mesón Carrión is a restaurant located in the vicinity of El Caminito del Rey, less than a ten-minute drive from the Caminito’s exit. It’s the perfect spot to savor typical dishes of Andalusian cuisine. Mesón Carrión specializes in serving the traditional gastronomy of Álora.

You can walk the Caminito del Rey without a guide. The path is accessible for independent exploration, allowing visitors to traverse the route at their own pace and immerse themselves in the awe-inspiring scenery. However, it’s essential to adhere to safety guidelines and regulations while exploring the Caminito del Rey independently. That said, guided tours caminito del rey are worth the extra cost as they offer in-depth information about the walkway, its history, and wildlife. Professional guides ensure a comprehensive understanding of the area. Many people choose the cheaper option and miss out on the guided benefits.

RECOMMENDED LINKS AND RESOURCES

Expedia: To find cheap flights and good deals from your home country, start by checking Expedia—a great place to begin your search.

Hotels.com: Choose Hotels.com for a diverse range of luxury and resort hotel properties. Enjoy a seamless experience with a rewarding loyalty program and a price guarantee. Earn points with every booking, and enjoy complimentary hotel stays. 

Get Your Guide: For the best selection of tours and activities, highly rated by fellow travelers.

Discover Cars: For rental car price comparison and booking, with no hidden costs and the flexibility of free cancellation when you book your rental car through them.

Disclosure: All listings featured on TAO LIVIN’ are independently selected by our editors. If you click through and book something through our links, we may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for your support!