Spain is a great destination to go if you are searching for amazing hiking. While most people skip the countryside and the beautiful Sierra Nevada mountain range, this country offers hikers a varied landscape. You’ll find coastal routes, mountain ranges, and well-marked trails that you can explore–not bad for a place where hiking isn’t considered much of an activity! Whether you choose to go hiking in Spain for popular Camino de Santiago or Vias Verdes, there’s plenty of trails to get you excited.
Caminito del Rey, Malaga
This hiking spot was once regarded as the most dangerous footpath in the world. Since safety measures were put in place over the past few decades, it’s now safe and accessible to hikers. For thrill-seekers, this spot is often overlooked but is definitely worth the trip. The trail stretches over five miles between canyons, gorges, and valleys close to Malaga. The trail can take you about three to four hours. As more people find out about it, you now have reserve a ticket in advance in order to explore the trail.
Camino de Santiago
This is the most popular Spanish walking route–and something that I will never forget. Also known as the “Way of St. James,” it is made up of a series of ancient pilgrim routes. The trail starts from a variety of places throughout Europe, but all of them end at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. One of the oldest routes starts from the town of Ovideo in Asturias while the more popular trail starts at Saint Jean Pied de Port just across France. For a grand tour of Spain, you should check out the Cami Catala route. It starts at the Montserrat monastery near Barcelona. You also get the chance to explore some of Spain’s most amazing cities!
Las Cañadas, Canary Islands
Found on Tenerife Island located in the Canary Islands, this trail is home to Mount Teide, the highest mountain in Spain. The park also has plenty of other walking trails and mountainous peaks waiting to be discovered, so it’s worth spending a few days there in order to get the most of it. Craters, great weather, and beautiful landscapes make this park well-worth the extra flight in order to get there. But you will need a free permit in advance if you are visiting during the summer because you will be accompanied by a guide close to the peak.
Los Cahorros, Sierra Nevada
This trail is a tranquil and lesser-known alternative to the popular Caminito del Rey and can be found to the north close to the mind-blowing city of Granada. The Los Cohorros Gorge located in the Monachil River valley is among the most picturesque hiking routes in the Sierra Nevada and you will be surprised to know that the walk is safe and easy despite the rugged hanging bridges and overhanging rocks. The hike stretches over five and a half miles and will take you about four hours to explore the trail.
The Mulhacén, Sierra Nevada
The Mulhacén can be found in the Sierra Nevada mountain range close to the Moorish city of Granada. Considered the highest mountain on the Iberian Peninsula, it stands 11,414 feet above sea level. It is best attempted during the summer. If you don’t feel like challenging yourself too much, the area also features numerous trails with different difficulty levels. The most strenuous hike to the summit is passes by the northern face–mountaineers only, guys. The most popular and the easiest trail passes by the southern face and it starts from Mirador de Trevelez.
Guess what? There is hiking near Madrid! The trail can be found in the Sierra de Guadarrama close to Guadalajara province. It will take you about three and a half hours from start to finish, so calculate that in when planning a day trip from the city. The hike is suitable for all levels and offers incredibly views of the Parque Natural de Penalara, home to numerous types of reptiles.
Albufera Natural Park, Valencia
This park is not far from the city of Valencia and it is a great spot for a relaxing walk. The park has several different hiking trails, though all of them are fairly relaxed. The longest one is about two and a half miles. This park offers an escape from the busyness of Valencia. When you are done hiking, refuel with some delicious paella at one of the arrocerias in El Palmar.
Have you ever been hiking in Spain? Where are your favorite spots?