Los Riscos

Useful Information

Location: Centro De Interpretación De Los Riscos, 29452 Cartajima, Málaga.
(36.649100, -5.157070)
Open: no restrictions.
Fee: free.
Classification: KarstBare Karst KarstKarren
Light: n/a
Guided tours: self guided
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: Centro De Interpretación De Los Riscos, 29452 Cartajima, Málaga.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.



Los Riscos (The Crags) is the name of a characteristic landscape around the towns Júzcar and Cartajima. The other names are Riscos de Júzcar and Riscos de Cartajima. It seems riscos is the local word for Karrenfield. This is a high plateau of bare karst, devoid of vegetation and characterizes by limestone pavements and lapies aka karren. The limestone is dissolved by the slightly acidic rain water, the process creates furrows and grooves in the rock face, which deepen over time. It also widens the tiny cracks of tectonic origin in the limestone creating parallel trenches in the main directions of the cracks. The result are weird, pale rock formations which are quite spectacular. Sometimes they look like ruined castles from the Middle Ages.

The area is also full of caves, but they are only for cavers, there is no show cave. The best known cave in the area is called Cueva del Agua (Water Cave).

To see this area some walking is required. There are no roads crossing this area, but there are several trailheads for numerous trails. The best place to start a tour is the Centro De Interpretación De Los Riscos, a sort of visitor center and museum mixed with tourist information. Probably the best trailhead is the Sendero de la Eras, which is reached on a single lane gravel road starting at Júzcar, and is signposted Los Riscos. From the parking lot at the pass at 890 m asl it's more than 100 m ascent to the karren fields, which are between 1,000 and 1,060 m asl. There are explanatory signs along the well maintained trail SL-A 176.

Of course, it is also possible to start in Júzcar, but then you have to climb 400 metres. Its actually not a long walk, only a few kilometers, but due to the ascent you should expect several hours. There are also guided walks, which is definitely a good idea for beginners. Good walking shoes, sun protection, a hat, and enough water are the minimum equipment.