Visit Antequerra in the Province of Malaga and A World UNESCO Site

For an unusual place to visit and something a bit more traditional why not visit Antequera in the province of Malaga and the World UNESCO heritage site of the Dolmens.

 

This is the Ultimate guide to a day trip In Antequera and tips on where to go and how to get to Antequera from Malaga. So if you are heading off to Malaga in Spain and have heard of the obvious places to go such as Marbella, Mijas, Ronda, Juzcar and Granada, Why not visit Antequera? There are many places to visit from malaga on a day trip and Antequera is one of the best. Antequera is a medieval city and is often considered the Heart of Andalucía. This stunning Spanish traditional town is in the province of Malaga. You can also visit the World UNESCO heritage site of the archeological Antequera Dolmens ensemble. This ancient burial site can also be easily be visited from Malaga on a day trip. Here is the Ultimate guide on Visiting Antequera when you are in Spain including what to do in Antequera? and a historic look in to the heritage site of The Dolmens Antequera.

Plaza del Coso Viejo square in Antequera

Plaza del Coso Viejo square in Antequera

A charming Spanish city in the heart of andalucia.

As well as these newly listed World Unesco heritage sites likewise the city is pretty majestic in itself. There is an abundance of place to visit including the centuries-old moorish fortress of The Alcazaba of Antequera. With almost over 40 churches plenty of restaurants and many hotels offering so much to do.

Visit the World UNESCO heritage site of the Archeological Antequera Dolmens ensemble

Antequera is also known for its ancient burial mounds called The Antequera Dolmens ensemble. These burial grounds include the Dolmen de Menga, Dolmen de Viera and Tholos de El Romeral. The Dolmens site also includes two natural mountain formations of La Pêna de los Enamorados and EL Torcal. A dolmen is a type of single chamber megalithic tomb consisting of two or more vertical megaliths ( large stone ) supporting a large flat horizontal capstone or table stone. Most date from the early Neolithic period between (4000–3000 BC) These dolmens were sometimes covered with earth or smaller stones to form a mound. They are pretty much like the Stonehenge of Spain as it would of been a work of massive proportion to get these stones in to place and would of had spiritual recognition.

La Peña de los Enamorados

One of the first things you will notice when driving in to Antequra is the La Peña de los Enamorados. La Peña is a huge rock in the landscape that resembles the face of an indian man. The enormous rock formed of limestone overlooks the Dolmans and valley of Antequera the La Peña de los Enamorados is also known as the “The Lovers’ Rock” and “the Lovers Leap”.

Peña de los Enamorados was included as a landmark within the Antequera Dolmens Site  which was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list on 15th July 2016 (including El Torcal de Antequera).

La Peña de los Enamorados. La Peña is a huge rock in the landscape that resembles the face of an indian man.

La Peña de los Enamorados. La Peña is a huge rock in the landscape that resembles the face of an indian man.

Peña de los Enamorados seen from Menga Dolman

Peña de los Enamorados seen from Menga Dolman

Tholos de El Romeral

The first of the Domen sites you should visit is the Tholos de El Romeral. There is a small kiosk for tickets here and parking. The entrance to this site and the other two Dolmen sites is free but you are required to visit the onsite reception buildings for a ticket and leaflet. The Tholos de El Romeral is a  circular tomb with two chambers. The communities who constructed these Antequera archaeological sites expressed symbolic links with earthy elements. The Tholos de El Romerals axis points to the highest elevation in El Torcal. The Dolmen of Menga is orientated towards a geographical landmark of La Peña and finally Viera is pointed towards the equinox sunrise.

Tholos de El Romeral ancient Dolman burial site in Antequera

Tholos de El Romeral ancient Dolman burial site in Antequera

Inside the Tholos de El Romeral ancient Dolman burial site in Antequera

Inside the Tholos de El Romeral ancient Dolman burial site in Antequera

Dolmen de Menga and the Dolmen de Viera

The second two sites Dolmen de Menga and the Dolmen de Viera are both in the same place approximately 5 minutes down the road.

Dolmen of Menga

Menga is a Gallery Dolmen that opens into an atrium and also has another room inside. Inside five slabs make up the roof which are supported by three central pillars. It is not known exactly when Menga was built but it is thought to of been between 3800 and 3400 BC. Menga dolman was then used as a holy space or funeral place until medieval times.

Dolmen de Menga

Dolmen de Menga

One of the three pillars inside the Dolmen de Menga

One of the three pillars inside the Dolmen de Menga

Dolmen of Viera

The Dolmen of Viera is a long corridor tomb that was used as place of worship and burial during the copper and bronze age.

The Dolmen of Viera is a long corridor tomb that was used as place of worship

The Dolmen of Viera is a long corridor tomb that was used as place of worship

The entrance to The Dolmen of Viera's long corridor tomb.

The entrance to The Dolmen of Viera’s long corridor tomb.

How do I get to Antequera Dolmens site?

The reception and the Dolmens of Menga and Viera are at Carretera de Malaga, 5- 29200 Antequera.

The reception centre and Tholos of El Romeral is situated at Carretera A-7283 in the direction of Cordoba.

Telephone (+34) 670 94 54 52

There is also a bus on Line 1 of the Antequera bus service stops directly outside both archaeological ensembles.

What are the opening times of the Archaeological Antequera Dolmens ensemble?

The opening times for the Archaeological Antequera Dolmens site are,

1st january to 31st March and 16th September to the 31st December

The Dolmens of Antequera is open from 9am to 6pm Tuesday to Saturday.

Sundays and public holidays 9am to 3pm. Monday closed.

1st of April to the 30th of June

The Dolmens of Antequera is open from 9am to 9pm Tuesday to Saturday.

Sundays and public holidays 9am to 3pm. Monday closed.

1st of July to the 15th September

The Dolmens of Antequera is open from 9am to 6pm Tuesday to Saturday. Night visits available from 8pm to 10pm

Sundays and public holidays 9am to 3pm. Monday closed.

Note : It is closed on Mondays expect Mondays that are public holidays or the eve of one. This then will be open from 9am to 3pm. Closed on the 1st and the 6th of January, 1st of May, and the 24th, 25th and the 31st of December.

Antequera Dolmens site visiter centre

Antequera Dolmens site visiter centre

EL Torcal de Antequera national park

El Torcal is also part of the world Unesco Heritage site and is an amazing sight to see. These interesting rock formations are simply stunning and so unusual. The protected EL Torcal Natural Area is known for it’s impressive limestone rock formations and some of the best in Europe. The whole area was under the sea until one hundred million years ago which is where these formations occurred.

Once you reach the park you will come across the parking in conjunction with a welcome centre, washrooms and a gift shop. There is also a wonderful restaurant that serves tasty Spanish specialties.

There are several trails available for you. A 45 minute green walk, a 2 hour yellow walk and a 3 and half hour orange walk. Take good walking shoes if you plan to do the longer routes because the terrain is very stony and steep. Also you should carry enough water and food. We plan to do this next time so here is picture of just what you can expect to find on route. Remember to look out for fossils and minerals along your path.

Alternatively you could walk just 5 minutes to a great viewpoint for a photo.

More things to do in the city of Antequera

A visit to this historical Andalucían town is a journey which takes you back almost 5,000 years. You can explore the city to your hearts content wandering the meandering streets. After exploring the ancient burial mounds take a look at the Roman baths, Moorish gateways, Gothic churches, museums and baroque bell towers. Here are just a few to get you started.

Arco de Los Gigantes the moorish gates to the city of Alcazaba

An Alcazaba is a moorish fortification of Spanish or Portuguese origin. The best of Antequera starts here as you will enter through the two metre thick sandstone arch moorish arch which dates back to 1585. From then you will and trace your steps to the beautiful Church of Santa Maria la Mayor. This then takes you to the old Moorish Alcazaba.

The Alcazaba of Antequera

The city view from the The Alcazaba of Antequera is a picture perfect postcard of white houses. With every turn you will see views that take your breath away. From then you will take a walk up to the entrance of the old city walls and see just how beautiful Antequera is. Additionally for just 6 euros you can visit the church of Santa Maria la Mayor with is baroque interior this is not seen from the outside you will be taken by surprise.

The views across Antequera from the Bell Tower are extensive and the bell here is huge and it can be deafening.
There are excellent toilet facilities available near the White Tower too. There are four large arches around Antequera.

The view from The Alcazaba of Antequera overlooking San Sebastian church.

The view from The Alcazaba of Antequera overlooking San Sebastian church.

The gate of The Alcazaba of Antequera

The gate of The Alcazaba of Antequera

Churches of Antequera

With so many churches and places of worship that are many years old you will be spoilt for choice.

The Portichuelo chapel- virgin del sorocco sits majesty on the top of the town. Whilst you can not go inside to visit you can have a cheeky tapas and glass of wine on the terrace and admire the view!

The Portichuelo chapel- virgin del sorocco sits majesty on the top of the town

The Portichuelo chapel- virgin del sorocco sits majesty on the top of the town

The San Sebastian Church can be seen from the the Alcazaba of Antequera

The San Sebastian Church can be seen from the the Alcazaba of Antequera

Getting around Antequera

It is very easy to walk around the town of Antequera and you can also drive. However roads can be quite narrow and busy in places. There are some steep hills and plenty of steps so get your comfy shoes on, though you may need to carry small children.

When you visit Antequera you could also try the City sightseeing train with a guided tour of the city. You can pick the train up at signposted stops throughout the town.

City Sightseeing train Antequera

City Sightseeing train Antequera

Eating in Antequera

There is plenty of traditional tapas restaurants to choose from in the city of Antequera. Porra de Antequera is a type of type of cold thick tomato soup, made typically by the local villages in the Antequera region. The name Porra comes from the tool with which it is made, the pestle (porra) and the mortar. The area is also known for the best fried eggplant, sliced so thin and crispy and the best olive oil!

Getting to Antequera

Malaga AGP airport is just 60km minutes away with daily flights from the UK everyday. To drive to Antequera it takes approximately 40 minutes from Malaga. You can get trains in to the Santa Ana Station in Antequera . However the best way to get to Antequera is to hire a car directly from the airport.

For an unusual place to visit and something a bit more traditional ,why not visit Antequerra in the province of Malaga and the World UNESCO heritage site of the Dolmens.

Local tiled map of Antequera

Where else can I visit from Antequera?

If you are staying in the area a while you could also travel around Andalusia and visit many more places nearby Antequera.

From here you could visit Gibraltar and hop across the border.

How about a Juzcar the village of the Smurfs?

Go up in to the mountains as well as exploring Ronda

Visit more World heritage sites in Cordoba.

See the playground of millionaires and also the Antique market at the Bullring in Puerto Banus 

Alternatively take a ferry from Tarifa to Morocco

Visit Malaga itself and find Picasso’s birth place.

 

Wherever you travel In Antequera you will love your time visiting this really pretty Spanish city. You can visit Antequera in a just a day by experiencing the main sights or you can peruse at your leisure over a few days and really soak it up.

D x

 

Visit Antequera The world UNESCO site of the Dolmens For an unusual place to visit and something a bit more traditional why not visit Antequera in the province of Malaga and the World UNESCO heritage site of the Dolmens.

Best things to do in Antequera Spain,

 

 

 

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4 Comments

  1. November 11, 2018 / 7:22 pm

    Beautiful photos. You have truly explored the area. I didn’t know they had tombs like that in Spain. El Torcal certainly is unusual. I love the rock formations

  2. November 12, 2018 / 9:57 pm

    Oh wow these pictures are amazing and so beautiful! So much to see and do!

  3. November 14, 2018 / 10:42 am

    This is the kind of Spain I love to visit. I didn’t know about this area but the landmarks and historic villages would literally make a holiday here perfect for me

  4. November 14, 2018 / 1:51 pm

    It looks like a fascinating place to visit – I love exploring historical sites

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