Start: Agua Amarga Finish: San José
Today you travel to the former fishing village of Agua Amarga, where your programme begins. Your accommodation is right by the beach, a white-washed hotel built in the typical style of Southern Spain with terraced gardens and views to the bay.
You start off the week with a choice of walks.
The first involves a steep ascent up to Mesa de Roldán, where you follow a path along an abandoned railway line with sweeping views to the sea.
Challenge: 3 hrs, 10.5 km, 290 m ascent/ descent.
The section option begins with an inland stroll to an ancient olive tree. Then you hike toward the coast to explore the typical steppe-like habitat of “los espartales”, where esparto grass once thrived in bizarre and seemingly inhospitable conditions.
Challenge: 4 hrs, 13 km, 230 m ascent/ descent.
From Agua Amarga you hike south, first on inland paths then along the coast to reach Rodalquilar. You’ll pass the characteristic dry riverbeds called “ramblas” and follow them down to hidden coves, where lush greenery creates surprising oases in the desert. Your route takes in the lovely bay (and quirky hippy colony) at Las Negras and the stunning beach at El Playazo.
Challenge: 7 hrs, 21 km, 530 m ascent, 500 m descent.
The Rambla de la Granadilla winds through barren hills, a fertile path with a different type of vegetation. Palms and oleanders, reeds, fig trees and poplar groves with views to the Sierra in the distance. You will pass the infamous Cortijo del Fraile, site of the tragic events which inspired Federico García Lorca’s great work, “Bodas de Sangre”. Here the remains of now-extinct mining activities survive among rocky landscapes in splendid earth tones. Option of stopping to visit the Casa de los Volcanes (House of the Volcanoes) and gorgeous botanical garden.
Challenge: 4,5-5 hors, 15.8 km, 320 m ascent/ descent.
Today’s route traverses areas of eroded lava rock studded with dwarf palm trees to reach imposing extinct volcanoes. Along the way you will pass ancient Moorish water systems, wild olive groves and deep gorges, leaving the desert behind and gazing toward the Mediterranean beyond. In the afternoon, the route circles back to the hotel in Rodalquilar.
Challenge: 6 hrs, 19 km, 410 m ascent/ descent.
This walk follows the cliffs through an unspoilt area, where oases and palm groves emerge from among the dunes and bright white villages provide contrast to complete the picture. Dark sandy beaches and historic pirate hideaways lead to the next accommodation, in a charmingly authentic fishing village. Just inland, el Cerro de los Frailes, at 493m Cabo de Gata’s highest summit.
Challenge: 5 hrs, 19 km, 310 m asccent, 330 m descent.
Today you will see the most popular of the area’s beaches as well as the secret coves which can only be reached on foot - Los Amarillos, Chica, Grande del Barranco, Lance de Perro, Playa del Barronal, Media Luna, Los Genoveses and Monsul. An adventurous and varied route with ever-changing views and a marvellous way to end your week in the Natural Park.
Challenge: 5,5 hrs, 17 km, 280 m ascent/ descent.
Small family hotels, set in beautiful white villages. All of them have been carefully selected for their location, atmosphere and/or unique services. All rooms are en-suite. Some of the hotels we work with appear here. If a certain hotel is unable to confirm due to lack of availability, we will request a similar one and inform you about the alternative booked.
Situated in Agua Amarga, Hotel Las Calas is a small establishment in a quiet setting right by the beach, with traditional Mediterranean architecture, white-washed façades and wooden balconies. Breakfast is served on a fantastic terrace, surrounded by lush vegetation and a variety of native plants and trees.
Designed with innovative concepts in mind, Hotel Spa Rodalquilar offers a modern architectural style while maintaining Arabic and Andalusí influences. Luxurious details and unique services contribute to guests’ enjoyment and a chance to rest, relax and ….. DREAM
Hotel Doña Pakyta situated facing to the sea, watches every sunrise in the bay. Plenty of natural light and with the best views of San José, this building from 1,960 styled like a traditional Basque House has become, with its refurbishes, and has known how to adapt in the time without leaving its origin to get the XXI century.
You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, between September 15th and June 15th.
Arriving in Agua Amarga
From the airport, you first take a bus to Murcia. There are several services daily and travel time is about 55 minutes. From Murcia you get a bus to Vera. There are several buses a day and travel time is about 2 hours (Timetables at www.alsa.es). From Vera, you take a taxi to your first accommodation in Agua Amarga (55km, approximately 40 minutes).
From Málaga Airport (AGP)
From Málaga Airport, you first take a bus to Almería. There are several services daily and travel time is 3 to 3.5 hours (Timetables at: www.alsa.es)
From Almería, you take a taxi to your first accommodation in Agua Amarga (60km, approximately 50 minutes).
From Almería, Granada or Murcia airports
(*) Optional airport transfers can be reserved in advance. Please enquire at the time of booking. The distance from Almería Airport to Agua Amarga is 55km, approximately one hour by car.
(*) Optional airport transfers can be reserved in advance. Please enquire at the time of booking. The distance from Granada Airport to Agua Amarga is about 225km, approximately 2.5 hours by car.
On arrival in Murcia, you take a bus to Vera. There are several services a day and travel time is about 2 hours. Please check timetables at www.alsa.es
From Vera, you take a taxi to your first accommodation in Agua Amarga (55km, approximately 40 minutes).
(*) Optional airport transfers can be reserved in advance. The distance from Murcia Airport to Agua Amarga is 160km, approximately 2.5 hours by car.
Return from San José
For flights from Alicante (ALC) or Málaga (AGP)
Travelling back to Alicante, you first take a taxi from San José to Vera (80km, approximately 1 hour). From Vera you get a bus to Murcia. There are several services daily and travel time is about 2 hours. From Murcia you take a bus to Alicante Airport. There are several buses a day and travel time is about 55 minutes. (Timetables at www.alsa.es)
Travelling back to Málaga, you first take a bus from San José to Almería. There are several buses a day Monday to Friday, with fewer services at the weekend. Travel time is about 1 hour (Timetables at: www.autocaresbernardo.com). Next you take a bus from Almería to Málaga Airport. There are several services a day and travel time is 3 to 3.5 hours.
For flights from Almería, Granada or Murcia
(*) Optional airport transfers can be reserved in advance. Please enquire at the time of booking.
Distance to these airports…
Driving to Cabo de Gata
Agua Amarga is about 250km from Alicante Airport (2 hours 45 minutes by car) or 275km from Málaga Airport (3 hours by car).
Distance from other airports…
You can leave your car in Agua Amarga for the duration of your stay
Returning to Agua Amarga
You take a taxi from San José back to Agua Amarga, to collect your car (40km, approximately 45 minutes).