A couple of Secret Swimming Spots ‘found’ in Andalucia #1

A couple of wonderful days out from Cabopino – Banos de Hedionda (which I’ll tell you about in #2 post) was quite possibly my favourite day out of this trip so far!

Our friend Steve has a wonderful book, Wild Swimming in Spain (we have the equivalent for the UK) which we borrowed for a couple of nights, finding a couple of spots that we wanted to visit.  Charca de Canalon and Embalse de la Concepcion.

So we decided on a day, packed our sandwiches, towels etc. and headed off on the road up into the mountains above Marbella.  We followed the instructions, both on the SatNav and in the book, which took us along narrow roads until we weren’t even on a road at all, noticing evidence of recent rockfalls along the way.  It was one of those drives that Calv enjoyed, and I didn’t quite so much….  And it culminated in us NOT finding what we were looking for!!  On asking a group of Spanish men as we made our way back along the road it would appear we didn’t go quite far enough – and they looked at our car and expressed doubt that we would have made it.  Having said that we were expecting to have to park up and walk a couple of km to get to the pool anyway.  We think the SatNav stopped us immediately above where the pool was, but of course it wasn’t visible from the top.  See the video below for just a small section of the drive.

So we headed back to an area that we had seen as we passed by, the Naciemento del Rio Molinos where the river has been tamed and the mountain water collected ready for distribution.  It wasn’t actually built that long ago.

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There’s a little picnic area here, so we stopped for our lunch before moving on.

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Picnic Area at Nacimientos del Rio Molinos

We decided not to try finding the Charca de Canalon again (maybe another time?)

Instead we headed to Embalse (Reservoir) de la Concepcion which we had already seen on our drive in.  We parked up at the top, having decided to listen to the advice in the book that the road down was best left to 4 wheel drives, emptied the bag of all but essentials (I later wished that I hadn’t taken out my water shoes) and set off on the trek down to the water.  This was quite steep in places and also quite slippery at times as it was often made up of shingle – we were glad that we’d worn walking boots, and that we’d left the car at the top!

When we eventually made it down to the water it was just so peaceful (and also hot, we cannot even begin to imagine what it must be like in the height of summer).  I dipped my toes in, but couldn’t go in too far as I’d left my water shoes in the car (I blame Calv…!)

Enjoy the photos:-

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I’m not going to lie, it was a pretty hard slog back up the hill (not helped by the fact that we’d left our drink in the car – doh…), but when we made it back, spotting a rusting car in the bushes alongside the path on the way, (and after a little rest) I went to explore the Ermita de St Miguel which was situated above the car park.  This pilgrimage was only established in the 1970’s and is called the Tomilleria.  It’s held at the end of September each year.

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A wonderful day out that could only have been improved by us having actually found the swimming spot that we had originally set out to visit!!

Related Posts & Pages:-

Secret Swimming Spots #2

Review for Camping Cabopino 

Author: MandoraTheExplorer

Having given up full-time work we currently work a year to travel for 4-5 months, and we're hoping to continue this until we can retire properly! Currently living, and loving, life to the full :)