Salares - Penas Blancas Circuit

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Salares is a spectacular white village, typical of the mountain pueblos of Axarquia and still largely unspoiled. It includes a beautiful 14th Century church, incorporating the tower of the earlier Moorish mosque and an ancient Arab mule bridge.
The village stands beside the Rio Salares, a tumbling mountain stream watering a fertile valley surrounded by the magnificent mountains of the Sierra de Tejeda. Several shepherds graze their goats and sheep across the slopes, which ring with the music of their bells.

The valley is a kaleidoscope of colourful scenery. Small vineyards, olive groves and orange, lemon and almond orchards crowd along the riverbanks. Higher up are evergreen oak and pine forests, giving way in places to pasture and stands of poplar, chestnut and eucalyptus. Many of the higher slopes are clothed in garrigue, predominantly cistus and lavender, cropped by the goats to a pink and grey-blue carpet. But there are a host of other wildflowers and herbs to be seen too and the air is sharp with the pungent scent of sage, rosemary and thyme. Birds and butterflies abound.
Old farms and cottages punctuate the landscape, some still working, but most now spectacularly crumbling ruins. Ancient mule tracks dating back to the Moors criss-cross the valley and water splashing through old acequias, irrigation channels, provides a counterpoint to the ringing of the goats' bells.

This short 4.5km walk from the village crosses the river via the old mule bridge, then circles around the ridge to the east of the river, encompassing a delightful cross-section of all the valley's varied scenery. Much of the route is easy walking on good paths and tracks, but there are a couple of steep ascents and descents over loose surfaces, where stout footwear and a stick are advisable.

Spain - Southern Spain - Malaga - Axarquia

Features

Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Church, Flowers, Food Shop, Great Views, Mountains, Pub, River, Toilets, Waterfall, Wildlife, Woodland

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