Have you heard of the Genal Valley? If you are a lover of the rural world you can not miss this beautiful valley located in the region of the Serrania de Ronda, one of the many corners that has the province of Malaga and worth visiting.
This unique spot is one of the few almost virgin places left in the province of Malaga, hidden in the interior of it and to reach it we will have to go through curves and country roads, but it has stunning views of large ancient forests and crystal clear waters of the river Genal, which is the one that gives its name to this impressive place. Want to know more? Stay tuned!
How many villages are there in the Genal Valley?
The Genal Valley is made up of 16 white villages and as a curiosity we can tell you that it has a microclimate and a great flora. A perfect place to enjoy some hiking routes in the province of Malaga. You can also rent a bike if you feel like it.
You should know that there are two distinctions: the white villages of the Genal Valley known as Alto Genal and Bajo Genal.
Igualeja (where the river Genal rises)
Igualeja is a village with a long history, as it is located in an area that has been inhabited since prehistoric times. The town has numerous monuments and buildings of historical interest, such as the church of Nuestra Señora de Belén, the castle of Igualeja and the Roman bridge of Murtas.
Igualeja is also known for its wine industry, as it has a large number of vineyards and wineries where high quality wines are produced. It is also an ideal place to enjoy nature, thanks to its location in the Sierra de Almijara mountain range and its proximity to the coast.
Pujera (living among chestnuts)
Pujera will surprise you with its large chestnut grove. This small village of just over 300 inhabitants is one of the most beautiful to visit during the autumn season. If you want to see the chestnut trees in bloom, we recommend that you visit in spring and climb up to the Mirador de la Cruz viewpoint.
It has numerous monuments and buildings of historical interest, such as the church of Nuestra Señora de Belén, the castle of Igualeja and the Roman bridge of Murtas.
Narrow streets with steep slopes that will not leave you indifferent.
Parauta, like the neighbouring villages, has a Moorish history. A Malaga municipality that is partly within the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park, where you can find the Vallecillo holm oak with more than three metres in diameter and an incalculable age.
If you have heard its name, it is probably because it has a musical ensemble of verdiales, where you can enjoy the typical music of this region of Malaga.
In addition to its numerous churches and fountains, we recommend you not to miss its wooden sculptures, made by the Galician artist, Ricardo Davila.
In the heart of the Serranía de Ronda you can enjoy nature, a peaceful environment in which to stroll and get to know its customs, which are also closely linked to agriculture and chestnuts. The capital is 111 km away and has barely 250 inhabitants.
Its most outstanding monument is the 16th century church of Nuestra Señora Virgen del Rosario.
This is probably the most famous village in the Genal Alto. Some years ago this small village was chosen to film the Smurfs movie and since then it has been a great tourist success. You will be pleased to know that all the houses are blue and that there are still some remains of the famous film. You can find out much more information about what to see in Júzcar in our post.
Another of the villages of the Genal Valley that you can discover during your visit. In 2022 it had 270 inhabitants, so it is a small village. Streams and chestnut trees to enjoy during your walks. Churches, convents and the Almendaraches cave stand out in this municipality in Malaga.
It is only 17 km from Ronda, a white village of Arabic origin with a population of around 350 inhabitants. In this small municipality is preserved the house where Fray Leopoldo was born and a sculpture.
There is also a viewpoint named after him.
You can also enjoy other monuments such as the dolmens of Encinas Borrachas and Montero and the monolith of Fernando VII.
Villages of the Bajo Genal
This municipality is located between the Genal and Guadiaro Valleys. Among its outstanding monuments is the Church of San José or San Roque. Do you like must? This small municipality has an Open Must Museum where you can see a dam and how this drink is made.
Another of the white villages of the Genal Valley, Benadalid has only 260 inhabitants but is an enclave of unique beauty and nature. Here you can see the parish church of San Isidoro, the Bení Al Jalí square which dates back to 1505. Also on the outskirts of the village is the Benadalid Castle.
It has an old distillery located in the Museum of Arts and popular customs called El Alambique.
It also has a Water Museum.
One of the most important buildings is the Casa Consistorial, currently the Town Hall. You can also see the Church of Santo Domingo de Guzmán or the Roman Columbarium of Cortijo del Moro as well as the Cueva del Moro. This white village in the Lower Genal Valley also has an Ethnographic Museum of Benalauría and the Casa de los Moros y Cristianos Interpretation Centre.
In the basin of the river Guadiaro is the Cañón de las Buitreras, an impressive canyon at the confluence of the municipalities of Cortes de la Frontera, Benarrabá and Benalauría.
With its Arab heritage and impressive nature, you can see the Church of Nuestra Señora del Rosario, the hermitage of Calvario or the Mirador del General. A village with Moorish heritage that you will love for its nature and cosiness.
Situated to the west of the Genal Valley, it is somewhat larger than the latter, with around 445 inhabitants. From the Muslim period you can enjoy the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación, the Hermitage of Santo Cristo de la Vera Cruz.
We recommend you enjoy the Fuente del Lobo fountain or Casa Lola, which dates back to the 18th century.
It has more than 1600 inhabitants and the Telegraph newspaper crowned this small municipality in the Genal Valley as the most perfect in Spain. You can still see some ruins of the Castillo del Águila.
If you decide to visit it, don’t miss the Museum of the Canyon, the Church of San Sebastián, the Carmelite convent or the fountain of the Seis Caños from the 17th century.
Arab heritage and traditions of wines and spirits that you can discover in the Museum of Popular Arts and Spirits.
It has the Fuente del Río Lavar fountain, which was once a public washing place. This small municipality has 3 churches. The church of San Francisco de Asis, the hermitage of Santa Cruz del Choricillo and the hermitage of Castañuelo.
It is known as the museum village of Malaga because it exhibits some works of art in the open air. It is one of the most beautiful villages in the province marked by its Moorish past and an enviable nature. We recommend you not to miss this beautiful town and its works on display in its streets, sculptures in the trees and that is increasingly popular and visited by tourists.
As you can see, the villages of the Genal Valley are a tourist attraction in the province. Are you coming to Malaga? We recommend you rent a car in Malaga and make the most of this part of the province. Do you like rural tourism? Don’t miss the best caves in Malaga.
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