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Duration
8 days
Activities
  • self guided walk
Accommodation
  • 7 nights hotel
Meals
  • 7 Breakfasts

Price

$1000USD

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Overview

Trip Code: RSG

Trip highlights


  • Exploring an oasis of green in the south of Spain
  • Walking in a mountainous area surrounded by picturesque white-washed villages
  • Discovering the marvellous limestone formations, marked by spectacular gorges
  • Spending time in Ronda, with its intriguing mix of Moorish and European monuments

Deep in Andalucia is an "undiscovered" oasis of green where the classic Spanish mountain scenery of picturesque whitewashed villages nestled into the local hillsides will not fail to impress. The Sierra de Grazalema is a charming region for walkers. Discover a landscape of marvellous limestone sculptures, marked by deep gorges where vultures nest among the cliff tops. At lunchtime, take time out to replenish your energy with a round of tapas enjoyed on an outdoor terrace, then continue walking through an unspoilt countryside painted in earth tones, punctuated by brilliant white buildings against the soft grey-green of olive orchards, cork oak woods and Spanish silver firs. In the midst of these exquisite natural surroundings, you'll encounter 'pueblos blancos' with exotic Moorish names like Benaocaz and Jimera del Ibar, which recall centuries of disputed borders between Arab and Christian kingdoms. At the end of the week, you reach the town of Ronda, one of the prettiest in Andalucia, with its intriguing mix of Moorish and European monuments.

Trip Grading

introductory to moderate

More info about grading system

Make your way to the bus or train station in Ronda, where you will be transferred by taxi to Grazalema. Welcome to the "Pueblos Blancos" ("white towns")! Check in at your hotel and enjoy exploring the lovely white-washed village, situated at 830m in a mountain cleft below the impressive Peñon Grande peak. The oldest part of the village was built during the Muslim era, with the upper parts dating from the 18th and 19th centuries. You'll spend 3 nights in Grazalema at a traditional village hotel with restaurant and a nice cool patio.

Meals:  Nil

The first walking route takes you through a classic limestone landscapes dotted with 'cortijos', traditional farmhouse complexes found across the countryside. You’ll traverse lovely woods of evergreen oaks and typical Mediterranean vegetation on your way to Benaocaz, an untouched “white village” which conserves historic remains dating back to Roman times, and perched on a hill, with sweeping views all around. In the late afternoon transfer back to your hotel in Grazalema. Walking distance: 11.7km/7.5mi, ascent 500m/1640ft, descent 550m/1804ft

Meals:  B

Today you have a choice between 2 circular routes in the area around Grazalema. Both walks offer lovely views and a striking combination of red earth tones and green vegetation, and the routes are short enough that you could do them both in one day. In the afternoon, time to explore small shops in the village and enjoy a refreshing drink on an outdoor terrace. Walking distance: 4.9 or 8.7km/2.5 or 5.5mi, ascent/descent 285m/935ft or 500m/1640ft

Meals:  B

This morning starts with a short taxi transfer (20 minutes) to the village of Villaluenga del Rosario, one of the highest Pueblos Blancos towns. You can explore the 16th century church of San Miguel, the cemetery of El Salvador, and the unique stone built bullring before setting off on your walk. From Villaluenga the trail descends into the bucolic valley of Llanos del Republicano, where the river disappears mysteriously into a limestone sink. You continue uphill along sculpted cliffs in the Sierras de Libar and el Palo to reach the lovely town of Montejaque. After a refreshing drink, you have the option of taking a taxi (own expense) or continuing on foot to Benaoján and your hotel. Walking distance: 17.4km/10.8mi, ascent 525m/1722ft, descent 975m/3198ft

Meals:  B

Today’s journey begins with a 10 minute walk to the train station, where you board the train for Jimera de Libar (another 10 minutes). From Jimera, you take a scenic walk through the Rio Guadiaro Valley along the river & amongst the pine forest, which leads you back to your hotel. Along the way you may see some native wildlife including ibex and deer. Walking distance: 9.3km/5.8mi, ascent 235m/771ft, descent 275m/902ft

Meals:  B

The walk today takes you along a beautiful through through a quiet Mediterranean woodland, followed by a steep ascent on goat trails up to the Cueva de la Pileta with its prehistoric paintings. A visit to the cave must be pre-booked. On the way back you can either take a detour to have lunch in Montejaque or continue directly to your hotel for lunch and to relax in the gardens or take a refreshing dip in the pool. Walking distance: 9km/56mi or 12.8km/7.9mi, ascent/descent 415m/1361ft

Meals:  B

Transfer to Montejaque to start today's walk, a rural hike starting with a section on an ancient cobbled path then among fields and small family farms. Reach mountaintop Ronda, where a spectacular bridge spans the deep gorge and literally divides the town in two. The historical Moorish quarter is well worth a visit. There is an upgrade option to stay in a parador hotel (supplement applies and must be requested at time of booking). Walking distance: 11.5km/7.1mi, ascent 440m/1443ft, descent 420m/1377ft

Meals:  B

Trip concludes after breakfast. An additional night in Ronda is recommended.

Meals:  B


Map

Elevation

The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.
On self guided trips, actual route information provided before departure will be more detailed.


Inclusions

  • 7 breakfasts - these are usually continental style consisting of bread, cheeses, meats, yoghurt, juice, tea and coffee
  • 7 nights accommodation in charming rural hotels on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities
  • Luggage transfers on days 4 and 7
  • Private transfer on days 1, 2, 4 and 7
  • Detailed information pack including route notes & maps per room booked
  • Emergency hotline

  • Lunches, dinners and drinks
  • Travel to and from Ronda
  • Transfers not indicated as included
  • Entrance fees
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Travel insurance

Grading

introductory to moderate  

INTRODUCTORY TO MODERATE – GRADE 2 This is a self guided walk with average daily stages of 1.5 to 6 hours (4-17.5km with ascents of up to 550m). The trip is graded introductory to moderate as it is mainly on wide unsurfaced tracks, footpaths or animal trails, with the occasional section on surfaced tracks or tarmac roads. Although sometimes the ascents are several kilometres long, they are gradual and technically easy. The use of walking sticks is recommended. A reasonable level of fitness is required. As with all of our trips it is important that you are well prepared. We suggest that you undertake regular exercise – swimming, cycling, and jogging, two to three times a week for three months prior to your departure.


Departure dates

Daily from 13 Mar to 25 Oct (except 16 Jun to 31 Aug)

Notes

M
Mid Season
H
High Season
DN1
High season is from 24 Apr to 15 Jun and 1 to 22 Sep. Mid season is from 26 Mar to 30 Apr and 23 Sep to 25 Oct. A supplement applies to mid and high season departures. The trip does not operate from 16 Jun to 31 Aug due to the heat.
DN2
Option to stay in a parador hotel on the last evening - supplement applies, rate on request.
DN3
Departures in March may follow a slightly different itinerary, staying in Montjaque on days 4-6 (because the hotel in Benaojan usually re-opens in late March.)

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$1000USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Single SupplementUSD$260
  • Single Traveller SurchargeUSD$380
*Prices listed are per person

Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Making Europe Affordable

We offer different levels of accommodation and comfort so that even the most budget conscious can treat themselves to active holidays on Europe's most celebrated tracks and trails. Our trips are great value for money because you only pay for what you want.  

Self-Guided Specialists

Our wide range of self-guided itineraries embody the UTracks philosophy of exploring Europe your way. We handle the logistics so all that's left for you to do is enjoy exploring Europe at your own pace. Most depart daily with a minimum of two people, meaning maximum flexibility.

Our Wide Range

With close to 400 trips in almost 50 countries, including the largest range of bike & boat holidays in Europe, we're confident that we can organise an Alps walk, Camino de Santiago or Via Francigena experience, Food Lovers' trip or a tour in a lesser-known pocket of Europe that you will love. 

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