Natural Pools & Waterfalls
Summer, without a doubt, is not the best time of year to go hiking in southern Spain. But, if at the end of the walk the reward is a refreshing natural cold bath… things are a little different!
The Sierra de las Nieves have great hydrological wealth thanks to the winter snow and the abundance of rainfall in the area.
There are important rivers such as Turón, Río Verde, Río Grande or Guadalevín; in addition to springs and underground aquifers that maintain their flow in summer.
Therefore, we can find numerous places to enjoy a refreshing swim either in natural pools or in small lagoons made by flowing rivers.
The waters are cold and completely clear. It will be a pleasure to bathe in after a long hot summer’s hike!
Rio Grande Guaro
13 mins | 10,3 Km From Monda
Along with the Turón river and the Guadalteba river, it is the most important part of the Guadalhorce river on the right bank.
The river starts in the Sierra de las Nieves, between the municipalities of Yunquera and Tolox, and runs eastward through the municipalities of Yunquera, Alozaina, Guaro, Coín and Cártama, where it flows into the Guadalhorce next to the home of Casapalma.
In this part of the crystal clear river a small lagoon is formed in which you can have a swim with the local native fish.
Pereilas River. Coin
17 mins | 11 Km From Monda
Located on the old Coin-Monda highway, where once a year devotees of the tradition make the pilgrimage to the hermitage is a shallow river that is no deeper than a meter so ideal for children!
Along the river you can find orchards with citrus, avocados, gorse, hearts of palm, ferns and riverside vegetation.
It is a crystal clear river, the perfect place to take a dip in spring or summer.
However take note: during very dry summers, the river can carry very little water.
El Charco de las Viñas
17 mins | 10,7 Km From Monda
This riverbed is located in the municipality of Ojén.
It is accessed through the village cemetery going downhill to find it.
It does not usually have a lot of people, normally the visitors are people from the town, so if you want to enjoy a calm and refreshing day, this is your best option.
El Barranco Blanco
21 mins | 16,2 Km From Monda
The crystal clear waters of Barranco Blanco, its lush vegetation and its white stones make this a beautiful place to visit all year round. It is home to otters, rare fish breeds and beautiful tree species.
It is situated in the counrtyside between Alhaurin el Grande and Coin.
This is an area of natural beauty in the middle of forests and the mountains of Sierra de las Nieves.
The Alaminos river flows all year round with its source in the Mountains of Mijas, and is the main tributary of the Fuengirola river.
Poza de los Huevos
23 mins | 16 Km From Monda
This natural pool is located in the municipality of Mijas, more specifically in the lower part of Barranco Blanco. It is formed by the Las Pasadas river.
A perfect place to cool off on a hot summer day. Try to find the river rapids that can be used as massage jets! You can also find other pools of different sizes for swimming in this area.
Desembocadura del Guadalhorce
26 mins | 30,3 Km From Monda
The Guadalhorce river is a stream full of orange and lemon scents that runs through the bowels of Malaga and gives drink to the terraces of fruit trees and to the vegetable and vegetable plantations to flow into the sea.
With its access from the Guadalmar part, this natural pool is one of the most comforting in Malaga with a large area that has great emotions. The final expansion makes swimming possible in a unique environment.
Charco del Potón Alto, Río Grande, Tolox
30 mins | 25,9 Km From Monda
Between Alozaina and Tolox on the A-366 road towards Coín passing km 46 we turn right into a lane, the ideal is to park in this area and keep walking, and enjoy the surroundings of the area.
You can also find parking space in an open area near the San Augusto light factory or park next to the pools.
Following the track that runs parallel to the Rio Grande we will find several pools where it is possible to swim.
It is a natural pool often frequented by the residents of Tolox during the summer.
The last pool is in a narrow limestone rock known as Pontoon Alto.
It is not recommended to jump between the rocks.
Charca de las Mozas, Rio Guadalmina. Benahavís
34 mins | 36,5 Km From Monda
Benahavís, despite being so close to bustling Marbella, has a rich and well-cared for natural environment.
One of its best known places are in the Narrows of the Guadalmina River, located very close to the town’s urban nucleus.
A spectacular gorge opened by the river itself and with numerous pools where you can cool off in the summer.
One of the most popular is the Charca de las Mozas, a pool almost three meters deep. Its access is very easy, being located next to the road that goes to Benahavís.
You can leave the vehicle close to the pool or in the town and make the journey on foot to the pond.
About a kilometer downriver, there is another pool where bathing is also possible.
Between both ponds, the Guadalmina river descends rapidly between limestone rocky outcrops, pools and waterfalls, which makes it especially striking for canyoning lovers.
To carry out the complete tour of the riverbed, it is necessary to be equipped with basic material for canyoning.
Charca de la Virgen, Río de los Caballos. Tolox
39 mins | 23,1 Km From Monda
From the well-known village of Tolox Spa, entering the course of the Los Caballos River, we arrive at a beautiful spot known as Poza de la Virgen. The hike is about 2.8 kilometers one way.
Throughout the hike you can see orchards with citrus, eucalyptus, gorse, ash, palm, fern, pine and riparian vegetation.
The Charca de la Virgin is a large pool of crystalline waters with a waterfall that looks like a horse’s tail hence its nickname “Cola de Caballo”.
It is a perfect place to take a dip in spring or summer But note that during a very dry summer the river can run dry.
El Charco de las Nutrias
45 mins | 44 Km From Monda
This lagoon is located in the municipality of Estepona. It is one of the most accessible that you can find in this municipality, although you have to walk a section upstream to find it.
It has a small beach where you can place your beach towel and sunbathe.
This place is pretty popular with tourists so it can get quite busy, it is therefore recommended to get up early to get the best place.
Water route walking on the Manilva River.
45 Mins | 60 Km From Monda
When you visit the Hedionda baths and continue walking try to follow the river as much as possible
You will reach the Charco de la Paloma and continue to the Charca del Infierno.
This last section that connects the two pools can be complicated and tiresome since there is no path and so it is a bit of rough terrain for approx. 300 meters.
Baños Romanos de la Hedionda y el Charco del Infierno
45 mins | 60 Km From Monda
The “Roman Baths” are located in the municipality of Casares (Málaga).
It is a place declared of Cultural Interest as it is a Roman bath, so you can not go with pets, or eat in the area where you swim.
But you can eat in the surrounding areas, since it is in a beautiful natural environment. It is ideal to spend a relaxing day.
Poza Macias, Rio Grande. Yunquera
50 mins | 33 Km From Monda
The source of the Río Grande is a spectacular natural enclave in which water springs from the depths of the Sierra de las Nieves, it is also known as the “Surgencia de Zarzalones”.
Water emerges from a cave to the left of the dam.Although in summer the flow may be small, in the rainy season it grows dramatically, collecting the waters that filter through the Sierra de las Nieves.
The upwelling of Zarzalones is the largest natural siphon in Andalusia with more than 2,000 meters of waterlogged galleries that have not yet been fully explored.
La Poza Macías is located downstream and is fed by a spectacular waterfall that is the end of those who make the sporty descent of the Zarzalones ravine.
It is reached by climbing about 400m from the river bed from the San Pascual light factory, with access by rail from Yunquera.
El Dique, El Largo y la Requena, Rio Turón. El Burgo
56 mins | 40 Km From Monda
The Turón river as it passes through El Burgo shows clean and fresh waters with numerous pools and dikes in a very attractive natural environment.It can be accessed from the entrance bridge to the municipality by a forest track.
The hike of just over 2.5 kilometers can be done comfortably on foot.
It can also be accessed by car if we are going with small children, there is an area where you can park.
The lane guides us through poplars and olive groves following the river bed to El Dique.
It is a habitual bathing area for the youth of the municipality.
A few meters later, we find another dam, smaller in size, and also very popular, El Largo.
In any of them you can enjoy a pleasant swim in the crystal clear and cold waters of the Turón river.
Charco de la Cal. Igualeja
56 mins | 57,7 Km From Monda
El Charco de la Cal is a small waterfall with a beautiful natural pool located in the bed of the Río Seco, a tributary of the Genal (Valle del Genal).
It is located about 4 kilometers from the municipality of Igualeja, in the area known as Sila.
It was the place where sheep were washed in the past after shearing them. It was also often frequented by the residents of the town.
The Charco de la Cal can be reached by taking a pleasant walk through chestnut forests.
La requena, Rio Turón. El Burgo
56 mins | 40,5 Km From Monda
The Requena pool is also located on the Turón river upstream, after passing the Dike and the Largo.Its purpose is to supply an irrigation ditch. It is quite deep. Cold and crystal clear waters that revitalize body and mind.
Charco del Canelón, Río Verde.Istan
57 mins | 40,4 Km From Monda
The Río Verde supplies the water for the La Concepción reservoir on which many of the towns on the Costa del Sol depend.
As it passes through the municipality of Istán, the Río Verde passes places of great beauty.
One of the most popular is the Charco del Canalón. Clean water pools and a beautiful waterfall where you can enjoy a relaxing swim.
The Charco del Canalón is accessed from the municipality of Istán. Part of the route can be done by car along a forest lane.
The rest, about 2.5 kilometers, must be done on foot along a lane parallel to the river.
You can also follow the river bed itself. Along the way you will cross terraced orchards and a pine and cork oak forest.
57 mins | 58 Km From Monda
Located in the municipality of Álora are the beautiful “El Chorro” lakes.
In its rural setting it is considered one of the main tourist attractions in Malaga.
Apart from being able to swim in its crystal fresh waters, you can do many other activities in this natural area, such as hiking, climbing (Desfiladero de los Gaitanes) or mountain biking.
Charco de Malillo. Parauta
1 hour 28 mins | 67,3 Km From Monda
El Charco de Malillo can be accessed from the Coneguas Recreation Area.
It is located about 5 kilometers from this point. It passes by the Cortijo del Navazo and you have to link up with the Cordel de Ronda that will take you to the Cortijo de los Manaderos.
Right here we take the Cordel de los Pescadores which is part of the Puerta Verde de Marbella.
El Charcón is located next to the Fuente de Huerto Malillo, a spring that provides a permanent flow of water to the Arroyo Carbonera which, from here, is called Río Grande.
Charco Azul de Castillejos del Rio. Ronda
1 Hour, 49 mins | 71 Km From Monda
La Poza Azul is located in the Guadalevín river bed, near its source, within the limits of the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park.
It is located at the end of the Castillejos canyon in an area of great beauty.
The Castillejos canyon is an abrupt and beautiful spot located in the section that separates Sierra del Oreganal from Sierra Hidalga.
Getting there is not easy and involves a hike of approximately 4 kilometers, one way.
The prize for the effort of hiking this great length will be two pools, the first with a small waterfall and the second, with greater depth, is known as Charco Azul.