Angosturas Gorge - Guadalmina River (Benahavis)

"Charca de las Mozas" after the rains © Kevin George Monterrubio
"Charca de las Mozas" after the rains © Kevin George Monterrubio

ANGOSTURAS GORGE, GUADALMINA RIVER, BENAHAVIS

The Guadalmina River begins near Igualeja, in the Sierra Bermeja of the Serrania de Ronda and flows into the sea 28km later at Guadalmina Beach in San Pedro de Alcántara, Marbella, Malaga.

The most interesting part of the river is the area near the village of Benahavis known as "Las Angosturas" or “Cañon de las Angosturas”. It is ideal for river walking or beginners’ level canyoning.

The river walking route begins in the area known as "Charca de las Mozas". It is located just above the A-7175 km post on a tight bend. There is a path down to the river where you can start by jumping into a deep pool from the tall rocks that surround it.

Just below “Charca de las Mozas” is the “Angosturas” canyon, which is 1,100 m long, finishing at “Charca de los Tubos”. The duration of the whole ‘walk’ is about 2 hours, if you do it gently and carefully, and the descent is 50 meters.

The first part includes the “Tajo del Novio” where you see the large rock face called “Cerro de las Palomas” and the hill called “Loma de la Barrosa”.

When you arrive at the first narrow gorge, you will have to swim through a narrow section and where you can see various plants amongst the rocks and water dripping from the rock walls. This is a really impressive spot.

Further on, the river opens up until you reach the most spectacular area, as the rock walls on both sides come together, giving the impression passing through a cave with crystalline waters. Without a doubt, a pleasant place to stop and admire the surroundings.

Then you continue along the river until you reach the “Presa de Guadalmina”. This is where water used to be collected and piped down the valley for agriculture. See San Pedro History). Here you will have to descend carefully for 3 or 4 meters, helped by a rope that is usually tied there.

Once you have reached the bottom of the dam, you cross the last gorge until you reach “Charca de los Tubos”, where the “Angosturas” route finishes. Climb up to the road and return to where you have parked the car.

Sendero Acequia de Guadalmina

You can continue on a pleasant walk crossing the wooden bridge up to a path that follows the old Benahavis aqueduct down to El Higueral Golf. Follow the Via Brijan down to cross the river and pick up a path again next another aqueduct passing another small dam and back up to “Ermita de la Virgen del Rosario”.

ADMISSION

Free, open countryside.

Practical Info

The best time of year is in the Spring when the water is higher. In the summer, especially weekends it can be quite popular.

When doing this ‘walk’ it is advisable to bring a helmet, neoprene suit and some neoprene shoes with a hard sole.

Obviously, you have to be a reasonable swimmer as there are deep pools to traverse.

Parking

Take the A-7175 from the A-7 coast road to Benahavis. Parking is available before Benahavis village on the right hand side at the recreation area next to the chapel “Ermita de la Virgen del Rosario”. (36.507 N 5.033W). This is found about 1km after crossing under the motorway viaduct. From the Ermita walk up the footpath by the road overlooking the gorge. It is a good 1km up-hill walk, however the car will be near the finish point.

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