If you are looking to get away from mass tourism and discover the true essence of the Costa del Sol, Álora is your perfect destination. This beautiful Andalusian village is full of charm and stunning natural landscapes.
In this article, we invite you to discover everything that Álora has to offer and how to get there to enjoy an unforgettable experience.
History of Álora
Thanks to its location next to the Guadalhorce River, this town has prehistoric origins, where settlements dedicated to agriculture were located. It has findings from the time, such as those in Hoyo del Conde, where tools for hunting and agriculture have been found.
Later, the Phoenicians laid the foundations of their castle, which over time became one of the city’s most representative monuments. However, Álora developed during the Roman period, known as “Iluro” and became an important center for the production of oil and wine.
Centuries later, the Arabs turned it into a place of residence and Alcazaba, turning Álora into an important fortress and commercial center. The Christians tried numerous times to conquer this impregnable castle, all of them without success, until 1484.
After the victory, the Christian queen Isabel la Católica ordered the construction of the church of the Incarnation on the site of the former Muslim mosque located within the walls of the resistant fortress.
What to see and do in Álora
Álora is a perfect destination for those who want to enjoy the nature and history of the region. Below, we present some of the best things to see and do in Álora:
What to see in Álora
Some of the places you can’t miss on your visit to the town:
One of its most emblematic sites is the castle of Álora, an impressive fortress dating back to the Muslim era that offers spectacular views of the city and the natural landscapes that surround it.
- Monday: 8:00 am – 2:30 pm
- Tuesday to Friday: 8:00 am – 7:30 pm
- Saturday: 10:00 am – 1:30 pm and 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm
- Price: Guided visit to monuments 3€
- Location: C. Ancha, s/n, 29500 Álora, Málaga
- Phone: 951 062 133
You can’t miss visiting the Rafael Lería Municipal Museum, which shows the history of Álora. In addition, you have the option of taking a guided tour of the town and learning all the details of this wonderful place.
- Schedule: Monday to Sunday, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm and 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
- Price: Museum visit 2€, guided visit to monuments 3€
- Location: Pl. Baja, 29500 Álora, Málaga
- Contact: 951 062 133
Located next to the municipal museum, we recommend visiting the Church of the Incarnation, which dates back to the 17th century and has an impressive Baroque-style façade built with large stone blocks. It has three chapels separated by sturdy Tuscan columns.
- Price: Free access
- Location: Pl. Baja, 29500 Álora, Málaga
- Contact: 952 496 017
The Bachiller olive oil mill, also known as Posada de Subires, is located in the historic center of the town, at the foot of the castle. Get to know the insides of this wonderful oil mill with its original structure from the 16th century.
- Location: C. Romero, 14, 29500 Álora, Málaga
Nature and Hiking
This white village is known for its spectacular natural landscapes and is a perfect place for those who want to explore nature on foot. We have chosen our favorites: one longer and more complex, and another shorter and simpler.
The Jurassic Route to Hacho has a route of about 6 kilometers. It starts at Hacienda Los Conejitos and along the way, you will find a variety of caves that were used as a refuge for shepherds and bandits in the past. Without a doubt, it is an ideal plan to do with family.
You can also see Karstic origin stalactite curtains and various viewpoints where you can contemplate the views of the village. The route ends when you reach the cross of Monte Hacho.
It is prohibited to make fire in the mountains and to litter. We recommend wearing comfortable clothing and shoes, and bringing water, especially during the hottest months (May to September).
A slightly longer route is the trail to the Hermitage of the Three Crosses, which has a total distance of 12 kilometers from the town center. Without a doubt, it is a natural spot worth visiting for its wonderful views and diversity of flora and fauna. Additionally, a popular festival is celebrated here which we’ll tell you more about below.
Popular festivals and gastronomy
In Álora, there are several popular festivals throughout the year, such as the Feria de Álora, which takes place in August and is a perfect opportunity to experience the culture and tradition of the region.
One of the traditional festivities is the Cruces de Mayo, which originated in 1722 and is celebrated at the Ermita de las Tres Cruces de Mayo. The event takes place on the first Sunday in May. There are many activities held on this day, such as the Verdiales dance festival or typical product tastings.
Another interesting festival is the Romería de la Virgen de las Flores. It takes place on the Sunday following September 8th, where the Virgin is carried on a cart pulled by two oxen in honor of the patron saint of the town.
The locals and visitors accompany her from her departure at the Church of the Incarnation to the Convent of the Flowers. In addition, on this day there are different contests for flamenco dresses, floats, horses, and traditional dances.
Every year, the traditional Sopa Perota festival is celebrated, which is the typical dish of Álora. On this special day, thousands of servings are distributed along with other typical products of the area. This festival refers to the workers and day laborers who used to work in the fields. This year’s event will take place on October 7th, 2023.
Regarding the typical gastronomy of Álora, you cannot miss the sopa Perota, which you can taste during the day dedicated to this tasty dish. It is made with bread, potatoes, onions, peppers, tomatoes, oil, asparagus, and olives.
Unlike other table olives, the aloreña olives are a variety collected manually that has its characteristic seasoning typical of the area sweetened in brine.
If you prefer something sweeter, we suggest empanadillas de polvo de batata, which are very typical of Álora and are usually a characteristic dish during the Christmas season. It is made with flour, oil, lemon, amontillado wine, anise, cinnamon, and sugar.
How to get to Álora
Next, we present you different options on how to get to this wonderful place from Malaga capital:
How to get there by public transport
There are different options to arrive by public transport.
If you want to get to Álora by bus, there are several options available from Malaga. You can take the direct bus M-231 from the bus station of Malaga María Zambrano, in the city center, with a duration of approximately 45 minutes. The ticket price is around 3 euros.
If you prefer to arrive by train, you can take the C2 commuter train in direction to Álora train station, from the María Zambrano train station. The ticket price is around 3 euros and it takes almost an hour to arrive.
How to get there by car
If you decide to travel by car from Malaga airport, join the A-357 motorway towards Cartama, take the exit A-343 and then follow the signs to Alora. The route is approximately 40 kilometers and it takes around 40 minutes to get there.
We recommend that you park on the outskirts of the town, as the historic center of Alora is a maze of narrow and steep streets that can be difficult to navigate by car.
If you prefer the convenience and flexibility of having your own means of transportation, you can consider renting a car at Malaga airport. With CarGest, you can rent a long-term car for months with an all-inclusive rate and no additional fees. With a rental car, you can explore Alora and the surrounding areas at your own pace, without worrying about schedules and public transportation restrictions.
Map of Alora
Below, you will find a map with all the relevant points marked to help you plan your visit to Alora and its surroundings. With this map, you can discover the best places to visit, enjoy the nature and cuisine of the region, and explore everything that Alora has to offer. Enjoy your trip!