Silk Trail - From the Sierras to the Sea

Guided walking holiday in Spain

From £ 625.- / 8 days

Price per person based on 2 people sharing

  • Walking a trail
  • Luggage transport included
  • Multiple accommodations
  • Guided walking holiday
  • People walking on a path, high mountains in the background
  • An ancient map of Spain
  • People waving from a beach

Andalucia, the most southerly region in Europe has spectacular scenery and climate. It has been the jewel of civilisations for thousands of years.

By the 10th Century the Moors had established the warm south facing sierras of the Axarquia as the major silk-producing region in the western world. Mulberry trees were cultivated in great numbers and villages sprang into life. The mulberry trees have gone but the pretty white villages (pueblos blancos) still cling to the hillsides.

Many of the ancient paths still exist and are the theme for this unique 8 day guided walking adventure.

Accommodation on the Silk Trail

Accommodation for the first three nights is in our own Casa Rurale in the heart of Cómpeta. The town is long known as the ‘pearl’ of the Axarquia with its labyrinth of narrow cobbled streets and spectacular views. The house is furnished in Moorish style, has eight bedrooms, sitting and dining rooms, all for sole use of guests on the trail. Located close to the main village square (Plaza Almijara), the house provides a unique and truly Spanish environment for the start of the adventure.

The city of Cómpeta Sitting room Bedroom

The next two nights are spent in Frigiliana, one of the most visited pueblos in the Axarquia and the last two nights in Maro a small pueblo close to one of the prettiest beaches in Spain. The hotels in both locations have comfortable en-suite rooms, great views and swimming pools (in season).

Man pouring wine from a wooden barrel Group of people having a meal

Meals throughout the week are taken at a variety of favourite local restaurants. Some are simple and others are sophisticated, but they all provide great service and excellent local cuisine in unforgettable locations.

Walking - From the Sierras to the Sea

People walking on a path in the mountain People enjoyng a wonderful view to the sea from a view point high in a mountain

Each of the five sections that make up Silk Trail are 'classic' walks' in their own right with great scenery, views and interest. Starting from the high sierras in the west, the trail walks the length of the south facing slopes of the Sierras Tejeda y Almijara, connecting eight white villages on the way. Transport is provided to and from trailheads on some days to maintain the essence of the linear trail.

The terrain varies from mountain paths to gently descending tracks. Walking times for most days are around 5 hours but there is never any rush or route marches. On some days shorter and longer options may be offered. It is also possible to opt out of any of the walks but few choose to do so.

Silk Trail walking holiday itinerary

People walking on a path, gorgeous mountains in the background Group of pleople posing for a picture, beautiful sky and mountains in the background

Day 1 - Arrival day
The transfer from Malaga airport to the sierras takes an hour by road. Depending on arrival time we will offer a stroll to Canillas de Albaida in the late afternoon, a great way to get the legs moving and the journey out of the system. In the evening, welcome drinks on our roof terrace with time to discuss the program and walks for the week ahead. This is followed by dinner in one of the excellent restaurants in the Plaza Almijara that also serves breakfasts during the stay in Cómpeta

Day 2 - Canillas de Aceituno to Sedella
The road transfer to Canillas de Aceituno takes around 30 minutes. The trail starts at the Casa del Reina, where dues for the silk trade were collected a thousand years ago. The route climbs out of the village into the parque natural and foothills of La Maroma, the 5th highest mountain in Spain. It continues on a spectacular path below the sheer white limestone southerly face of this impressive mountain and ends with the gentle descent to Sedella. Time for drinks in the village followed by road transfer back to Cómpeta.
Walking Time 5 Hours

Day 3 - Sedella to Cómpeta via Canillas de Albaida
Transfer by road back to Sedella to pick up the trail. It leaves this pretty pueblo via a Roman bridge and climbs again into the sierras but not nearly so high as the previous day. The trail then follows a level track as it contours around the mountain before a gentle descent to the valley of the Rio Cajula. There are a few easy stream crossings before the short but sharp climb up to Canillas. Time for drinks followed by the short stroll back to Cómpeta.
Walking Time 4 or 5 Hours

Day 4 - Cómpeta to Frigiliana via El Acebuchal
From the village, we may use our 4x4 vehicles to climb up to a ridge with spectacular views of the Sierras sweeping down to the mediterranean. The walk then follows part of the ancient Cómpeta to Granada trading route before descending to El Acebuchal. This once abandoned village has recently been brought back to life in a spectacular fashion and is a great place to stop for drinks. For those who choose, we provide the option of a vehicle transfer for the final 4km stretch into Frigiliana. We stay here for two nights in the the centre of this delightful, popular pueblo.
Walking Time 5 or 6 Hours

Day 5 - Rest day in Frigiliana
Frigiliana is one of the best known of all the white villages in Andalucia. The famous battle just outside the town marked the end of the 700 year Moorish occupation of Spain. This resulted in the total collapse of the silk industry and the region went into decline. How things have changed. Frigiliana is very pretty and it's proximity to the coast have put the town very much on the tourist map. It is a perfect location for a rest day with lots to do, places to eat and the opportunity to easily get to the resort of Nerja and beaches should you choose.

Day 6 - Frigiliana to Maro
Another classic walk with spectacular sea and mountain views. The walk starts from the village and drops down into the steep sided valley of the Rio Higueron. After 15 minutes gentle walk up the valley the path climbs steeply up into the sierras and continues to the rim of the Rio Chillar, surely one of the most beautiful and seemingly remote valleys in Andalucia. From the river, the trail climbs out of the valley and start the long but gentle descent to Maro. We stay for two nights in a small hotel this tiny coastal village.
Walking Time 5 Hours.

Day 7 - Maro beach and caves
The Maro caves, below the Sierra Almijara, are some of the largest and finest in Europe and too good to miss. For the last walk we offer a short coastal walk linking the Martello towers along the coast or a circular walk around the Tajo de los Bueys, This more strenuous option provides exceptional views back along the length of the sierras and down to sea. With both options there is time for a visit to the caves or an afternoon swim from Maro beach. A truly fitting end to this unique walking adventure.
Walking Time 3 or 4 Hours

Day 8 - Departure Day
Transfers from Maro are back to Malaga airport. If you are tempted to stay on in Spain for a few days, Nerja close to Maro is one of the better Costa del Sol holiday resorts. There are also direct coach services from Nerja to Malaga airport and also to Granada.

Dates and availability

A boat on a sandy beach, beauiful blue sky behind Granada at night

Spring 2017
Sunday 14 – 21 May

Autumn 2017
Sunday 8 – 15 Oct

£625.-/ 8 Days - price per person sharing double rooms.
Supplement for single occupancy of double rooms £95

The holiday provider also offers a Self Guided version of the Silk Trail that may be started on the date of your choice (subject to hotel availability).

For more information on this holiday and other exciting walking adventures in Andalucia please contact the holiday provider through the contact form.

Location of the Silk Trail guided walking holiday

Holiday type

Trail iconMultiple accommodationsGuided walking holiday
Guided walking holiday
Board basis: Half Board


From £ 625.- / 8 days

Price per person based on 2 people sharing

  • Luggage transport included


- Welcome drinks
- Three nights in Spanish Steps Cómpeta Casa Rurale
- Two nights in the hotel Villa Frigiliana in double ensuite rooms
- Two nights in the hotel PlayaMaro in double ensuite rooms
- Seven breakfasts
- 3 course evening meals with wine at excellent local restaurants (except on rest day)
- Five guided walks
- Transfer of bags between locations
- Transport to and from trailheads
- Airport transfers from and back to Malaga airport at specified times

Not included

All other personal costs

Walking holiday reference


Walking grade

Walking holiday in low to high mountains
  • Low to high mountains
  • Moderate walking

Best time of the year

April to June,
September & October

Walking Holiday by:


Peter and Sue Strange

Contact details

Languages spoken

English, Spanish

Getting there

  • Malaga Airport (47 mi)
  • Malaga Train Station (44 mi)
  • Location map

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