El Colmenar and
Cortes de la Frontera

El Colmenar - "The Hidden Gem of the Guadiaro Valley"

The village of El Colmenar is to be found nestling in one of the narrow Guadiaro river valleys. Flanked on one side by the Rio Guadiaro and on the other, the Los Alcornocalas natural park. After exploring the valley continue on through the cork tree forest to the town of Cortes de la Frontera with its views over the valley.

Directions by car.

This is almost a complete day trip, depending on how long you stay at each place. The road is quite twisty and you won't get into top gear very often. But the scenery and "experience the Real Spain" factor is very high. Leave Torreguadiro proceeding toward La Linea, at the second roundabout before the dual carriageway, take the turning to San Enrique. Proceed through San Enrique and before the bridge over the Guadiaro, turn right to San Martin. Bear right towards San Pablo (Jimena). Turn right on to the 369 towards Ronda. Just before the town of Gaucin turn left to El Colmenar. Park in the village. The footpath to the Rio Guadiaro is at the start of the village, sign posted to the hydroelectric power plant. Walk past the power plant and down to the river, you can walk up the river valley. There are also numerous pools along the river Guadiaro which you can swim in.

Village of El Colmenar

El Colmenar village.

On the way to the river valley

Walking down to the river valley.

One of the numerous pools


Two of the numerous swimming pools.

The railway to Ronda passes through both El Colmenar and Cortes de la Frontera. The complete journey from San Roque to Ronda takes a couple of hours and is a very picture postcard journey. Bridges and viaducts crisscross the river bed of the Rio Guadiaro and the line goes through 14 tunnels across the mountains.
The fare is very reasonable and parking at the Estacion de San Roque is free.
The train trip to Ronda can be found here.

Plague at El Colmenar

Information plague at the pretty El Colmenar station.



View from apartment towards El Colmenar

View from the road to El Colmenar.

Bridge over the Rio Guadiaro

The bridge over the Rio Guadiaro.

Rio Guadiaro at El Colmenar

The Rio Guadiaro.

Click here to see more full size images.

Directions by car continued.

Back in the car continue through El Colmenar over the railway line and on to Loma de castillo, this part of the trip is through the natural park with much wild life and many cork trees and lovely views.

Cork trees

Cork trees in the natural forest.

Carry on to Cortes de la Frontera, on the outskirts of the village is a nice restaurant, Meson los Mounteros. A beer, two course meal and coffee for two is around €15 - €20, with magnificent views over the valley. Continue through Cortes de la Frontera on the 373 to Algatocin, turn right on the 369 to Gaucin. Now turn right on the 373 to Maniva, crossing the E15/AP7 towards Sabinillas. Then left when you get to the coast road back to Torreguadiaro.

Meson los Mounteros Resturant

The Meson los Mounteros restaurant at
Cortes de la Frontera.

Interior of the restarant

Inside the Meson los Mounteros restaurant
at Cortes de la Frontera.

View from the resturant belocony

View from the Meson los Mounteros restaurant.