Ardales is a pueblo blanco located some 51 km from Malaga. Characterised by whitewashed walls (pueblo blanco means "white village") and reddish-brown roofs set against a backdrop of the rugged mountainside, it is easily recognizable even from a distance. It has an average temperature of 15ºC, receives about 2700 hours of sunshine every year, and a rainfall of about 400 l per sq. m.
Despite being quite far from Malaga, the provincial capital, it is easily accessible via the A-357. From Malaga, you can arrive at the center of Ardales in about 49 minutes. Upon reaching the entrance, you'll immediately notice the narrow, inclined streets, characteristic of Spanish pueblo blancos. This form of architecture is among the last vestiges of the long Moorish occupation in the region.
The first settlers in the area may have arrived way back during prehistoric times. This is evident from the archaeological finds in the vicinity, which have included Stone Age flint axes and bone needles. The first formal settlers were the Romans, followed by the Moors. During the Reconquista, the village was the center of see-saw battles between the Moors and the Christians, with the Christians winning the deciding battle sometime in 1454.
All those previous occupants have left historical monuments that are among the town's main tourist attractions. Some of these tourist spots are: the Casillo de Bobastro, the Parish Church of Ntra. Sra. de los Remedios, the Convent of Capuchinos, the Plaza de la Constitucion, and the Doña Trinidad Cave.
Aside from the numerous historical monuments, another reason why this village is frequented by visitors is its natural environment, which is ideal for camping. The Campsite Parque Ardales, which is near the Desfiladero de los Gaitanes (Gorge of Gaitanes), the Embalse del Conde de Guadalhorce (a dam) and other natural scenic spots, is a well-established camping haven.
For the same reason, many areas around the village are suitable for outdoor activities such as mountain biking, trekking, fishing, mountain climbing, rock climbing, and bird watching. The scenery, especially around those large bodies of water, is utterly stunning, so always bring your camera and some spare batteries.