MALAGA – The ambitious La Senda Litoral project is well on its way to reaching the finish line. According to the Provincial Government of Málaga, 90% of the 200 kilometre stretch between Manilva and Nerja has already been completed.
This ultimately over 200 kilometre-long path offers both hikers and cyclists the opportunity to discover the province’s coast in a unique way, although some coastal municipalities such as Rincón de la Victoria and Mijas still restrict bicycle traffic. The path is often so busy – especially during weekends – that it is difficult for cyclists to pass and this can lead to dangerous situations.
‘Sister project’ of the Gran Senda de Málaga
Cristóbal Ortega, the Deputy Regional Minister for the Environment, Domestic Tourism and Climate Change, emphasies that La Senda Litoral acts as a ‘sister project’ of the Gran Senda de Málaga. This project concerns a circular route that crosses the entire province via various paths and routes more or less along the provincial border.
Investment efforts and subsidies
Since 2016, a total of €12.1 million in subsidies has been provided to various municipalities to complete the path. A budget of €7 million has been reserved for this year. Ortega mentioned that a new section of the route in Vélez-Málaga, which is almost a kilometre long, has recently been opened thanks to an investment of €1.3 million.
Casares and Estepona as precursors
The Provincial Government positions Casares as the “first municipality to have its entire coastline connected by La Senda Litoral”. In Estepona, 90% of the coastline (23 kilometers) is already connected.
Future expansions and challenges
The project is well underway. However, there are still challenging sections that need to be addressed, such as those connecting Nerja and Torrox. The coast there is characterised by cliffs and narrow bays.
Rocío Ruiz, the deputy mayor of Benajarafe and Chilches, has praised the new infrastructure as a “necessity that now provides a safe and pleasant space for walkers.”
Jesús María Claros, Councilor for Infrastructure in Vélez-Málaga, adds that his municipality is now also part of La Senda Litoral. Furthermore, he emphasises the commitment to fully cover the municipality’s 22-kilometre beach line.
Once completed, the Senda Litoral promises to be an interesting tourist attraction. It will also be an excellent connecting element between the coastal municipalities of the province. Walkers, cyclists, residents and visitors, can enjoy the Mediterranean Sea, charming coastal towns and marinas without hindrance from motorised traffic. It is also good for the local businesses along the route. In places where the path is already completed, such as La Cala de Mijas, they see their clientele increasing.