The best time to visit the chestnut trees of the Genal Valley is in mid-November. We propose this hiking route to visit the chestnut trees in autumn and enjoy the copper forest and the magnificent colours that cover it.
It is a circular route that begins and ends in Parauta, a small village of narrow streets located in the Serranía de Ronda.
The route of the Chestnut trees of Parauta is a very beautiful itinerary in which we will enjoy the spectacular contrasts of colours: yellow, orange and reddish. A spectacle for the senses that nature offers us at this time of year.
Most of the walk goes through forest track or asphalted road that is ideal if you go with children or people who do not usually do much hiking. It is a simple route in which the ground does not show complication but it is important not to forget that they are ascents and descents continuous what can be tiring.
Once in the village of Parauta we will see a sign indicating the direction of the route and the distance to the village of Igualeja, as this path joins Parauta with Igualeja, although on our route we will take a detour that will take us back directly to Parauta. Shortly after starting we will find a fountain called “Fuente Nueva” (New Fountain).
The first kilometres of the route run along an asphalted road, which runs through private plots with chestnut fields. This part of the route is a little less attractive as it is all fenced off and you cannot pass to see them up close.
Afterwards, we pass a wide and comfortable forest track where it is possible to enjoy much better the contrast of colours. During all this part, the route is a continuous descent until the Arroyo de los Granados is reached. In this descent we will find a small abandoned house and then the stream that we have to cross.
After crossing it, there is a two-kilometre uphill section in which the path is narrow and the chestnut trees surround us. The landscapes we walk through are very beautiful with contrasts of green, red and yellow, so the continuous climb does not become heavy.
Little by little the more closed area of chestnut trees is left behind and it is possible to see a beautiful view of Cartajima, another of the towns of the Genal Valley.
If we follow the straight path, it will take us to Igualeja. In our case, we will take a path called Camino de Haida, which takes us again through a very wide forest track area, at times cemented, and from which we see the chestnut trees only on the sides.
It is important to be careful because in one part of the section, the path forks into three. To follow our route, we will take the exit on the left, passing by one of the many shacks along the route.
From this point a very nice part of the route begins since again the trail becomes a path and we will walk on land and leaves of the chestnut trees. Being a circular route, we have to cross again the Arroyo de los Granados that we had crossed before.
Once we have passed the stream, more than 2 kilometres of continuous ascent along an asphalted track awaits us until we reach Parauta. However, if we look back, we can still enjoy impressive views due to the contrast of colours.
Location: Parauta (Málaga)
Type of route: Circular
Distance covered: 8,3km
Time on the move: 3 h
Total difference in level: 453 m.
Difficulty: Easy (Moderate)
Recommended time of year: Autumn
Other recommendations: Wear waterproof hiking boots, comfortable clothes and carry water.
Download the trail
The Copper Forest
Named after the particular colour of the deciduous leaves of the chestnut trees, the Serranía de Ronda offers one of the most impressive autumn prints in the interior of the province of Málaga. The Copper Forest is a metaphor that alludes to the spectacular landscape that nature gives each year with the fall of the leaves of the chestnut trees, covering the mountains of browns, yellows, oranges and ochres.
The municipalities that make up the Bosque de Cobre have an enormous tradition around chestnuts: Alpandeire, Benadalid, Benalauría, Cartajima, Faraján, Genalguacil, Igualeja, Jubrique, Júzcar, Parauta, Pujerra and Yunquera.
Visiting them at any time of the year is a unique opportunity to discover beautiful landscapes, tasty gastronomy and numerous festivals. However, autumn is undoubtedly the best season to visit these fields and enjoy the beautiful colourful chestnut trees.