Direct contact with the nature, gives the Sierra de Grazalema the best of conditions for Active Tourism, Nature Tourism and Adventure Tourism. Grazalema Natural Park possesses these resources in generous measure and Active Tourism allows amazing leisure opportunities and an endless variety of activities. An ample offer allows you to choose from the following activities:
Canoeing routes. There is a pleasant canoeing route through the mountains on the tranquil waters of the reservoir of Zahara de la Sierra. This activity can be combined with raft construction.
In the Sierra you can also practice high mountain and adventure sports; bungee jumping is common, as is caving in the caves of El Susto and La Escéntrica, plus:
- Canyoning, (In the Garganta Verde, the Sema del Diablo and the Canyon of the Buitreras).
- Horseback riding.
- 4x4. (In the Natural Park and to the north in the Sierra de Líjar).
- Hot Air Ballooning.
- Flying two seater planes.
HIKING AND CYCLING
Walking and cycling are healthy choices to actively see nature. Discovering roads and trails provides tourists with peace and quiet, enriching their health and putting them back in form for city life. In Grazalema Natural Park these activities can be enjoyed all year round.
Water erosion has created canyons of great beauty such as the Garganta Verde, which at 400 mts. depth ensures a magnificent descent. It has also created a labyrinth of subterranean caverns and caves, of note being the Hundidero-Gato complex which is the longest cave in Andalucia,
The Environment Council of the Junta de Andalucía has improved a network of 20 marked hiking trails totalling more than 90 kms, which can be toured on foot or by bicycle, of which we recommend the following:
- The Pinsapar: The hike follows the old road between Grazalema and Benamahoma and ascends the north slope of the Sierra del Pinar from which you can enjoy spectacular views of the Sierra de Grazalema, the Serrania de Ronda, the Sierra de las Nieves and Sierra Nevada. However, the main attraction of the route lies in the possibility of entering the Pinsapar, where you will see Pinsapos and some old Quejigo oak trees. To walk this path you need a permit as it is in an area of maximum environmental protection, the permit can be obtained from the park office in El Bosque. Length 16 km.
- La Garganta Verde, (The green Gorge): This hike is through a spectacular Canyon sculpted by the waters of the Bocaleones stream which ends in a cavity called La Ermita.
A colony of griffon vultures nests on the rock walls. To walk this path you need a permit as it is in an area of maximum environmental protection, the permit can be obtained from the park office in El Bosque. Length 2.3 kms. It is considered to be of high difficulty because of the drops you need to get over.
- Rio Majaceite: This hike joins the towns of Benamahoma and El Bosque along the banks of the river Majaceite. Throughout the walk you will enjoy cool water and lush vegetation. No permit needed. Length 4.2 kms.
- Líbar Plains. This hike crosses dramatic karst landscapes and oak forests where cattle graze all year up to the great plain of the Llanos de Líbar which is framed by Limestone Mountains. Length: 10 kms.
INFORMATION AND INTERPRETATION CENTRES
ACTIVITIES YOU CAN CARRY OUT AROUND THE AREA:
*El Bosque Visitors’ Centre. Located in the Cadiz town of El Bosque. This centre gives us an exceptional overview of the Sierra de Grazalema, its Mediterranean forests and fir trees, along with human intervention in the environment and the decisive role of rivers and streams in the dynamics of these ecosystems.
El Bosque (Cadiz). Tel: 956-727029.
Opens: All year. Monday to Friday from 10.00 to 14.00 and from 17.00 to 19.00 hrs. Saturdays from 9.00 to 14.00 and from 17.00 to 19.00 hours. Sundays from 9.00 to 14.00 hrs.
- Caving Interpretation Centre. In this centre we can see the importance of the karst phenomena, the relation of man to the caves and caving exploration techniques.
Montejaque (Malaga). Tel. 952-167196/952-167551
- Pinsapos Botanic Garden A municipal property dedicated to the flora of the Sierra de Grazalema.
Zahara de la Sierra (Cadiz). Tel: 956-123004.
- Water Ecomuseum (Benamahoma Mill.) Located in one of the many flour mills that existed in this area. It shows the visitor the importance of water in the park and the use man has made of its power, (flour mills, fulling mills etc).
Benamahoma. Tel 956-727105
Opens: All year.Wednesday to Saturday and holidays: 10.00 to 14.00 and from 16.00 to 18.00 hours, (in summer, 18.00 to 20.00 hours). Sundays from 10.00 to 14.00.
- Castillejo Botanical Garden. Here you can see the different species that compose the more characteristic vegetation types of this biogeographical sector, ranging from the Natural Park of Grazalema to the Sierra de Loja (Granada), through the Serrania de Ronda and Sierra Bermeja.
El Bosque (Cadiz). Tel 956-716134
Opens: All year from April to May and September and October: 10-14.00 and 17-20.00 hrs. June, July and August: 10-14.00 and 18-21.00. Rest of the year from 10.00 to 14.00 and from 16.00 to 19.00 hrs.