Firstly, it’s not all that scary…but it is stunning…………..we did the walk back in September 2015 with a couple of our regular guests. Not to be missed..it’s less than an hours drive from here………read on for more info…..
The Caminito was originally built between 1901 and 1905 and was used to transport material and people between two power stations that were built either side of the El Chorro gorge. It wasn’t until the early 1920s that it was officially opened by King Alfonso XIII who walked its whole length and gave it its name. Since that time, the Camino has become one of the wonders of Spain.
The El Chorro Gorge (La Garganta del Chorro) is an amazing place, with huge walls of rock as high as 400m along its three-kilometre length. “El Chorro” can be loosely translated as the “spurt,” which is exactly what the water used to do when travelling through the gorge’s narrow ravine. The height difference between the two man-made reservoirs at either end of the gorge provided a unique opportunity to develop hydroelectric energy. An almost revolutionary concept at the time.
Electrical genius notwithstanding, the real attraction has always been the concrete catwalk, El Caminito del Rey, which threads the length of the gorge hanging precipitously halfway up its side. The original structure was said to be built by sailors who were used to climbing ropes and working while suspended above a void. Unconfirmed reports have also stated that prisoners, who were condemned to death, carried out some of the more dangerous tasks.
The path was built using sand and cement, and held in place by metal brackets. A simple iron railing was put in place along this decidedly non-frills path. The Caminito slowly fell into disrepair over the years and was officially closed in 2000 after several people fell to their deaths.
This danger became the stuff of legends and attracted climbers and adrenaline junkies from all over the world. With many people referring to the Caminito as the ‘world’s most dangerous pathway.’
Now, completely revamped and totally safe, it reopened in 2015 to the public.
The full length of the path is only 7.7 km, including the walk in and the boardwalks. Highly controlled now, advance tickets are required and the hard hats supplied must be worn. Lots more information on the official site – click on the link below: