Canillas de Aceituno best things to see and do

Visit the village of Canillas de Aceituno

Canillas de Aceituno vista pueblo en Axarquia
El pueblo Canillas de Aceituno

In this article you will find the essential information to visit and see the best of Canillas de Aceituno :

  • A few words about Canillas de Aceituno and its origins
  • Visiting Canillas de Aceituno, what to see?
  • What to do in Canillas de Aceituno
    • activities
    • idea for a guided tour
    • festivities
  • Where is Canillas de Aceituno?
  • Book accommodation
  • Some useful links
  • Experiences to discover in the province of Málaga

casa reina mora canillas de aceituno
casa de la reina mora

A few words about Canillas de Aceituno and its origins

Canillas de Aceituno is an authentic white village in Axarquia, in the province of Malaga.

The origins of Canillas de Aceituno go back to prehistoric times. However, the name Aceituno comes from the time of Al-Andalus, and therefore from the Arabic language.

canillas aceituno puerta y ventana

At that time, the village was an important centre for the production of silk, often green in colour, which was called azeytuni. This is what will give the name to the village later.

All around the village, there were mulberry fields from which the leaves were taken to feed the silkworms. This silk was very famous in Granada as well as in Malaga.

Below, we discover several drinks from the Al-Andalus period, in Canillas, including the use of a syrup based on aloe vera to strengthen, among other things, the stomach.

canillas de aceituno ceramica y historia
Historia del pueblo

For the record, it is said that in Canillas de Aceituno, the inhabitants have a Cordoba accent. In fact, after the reconquest by the Catholic kings, the village was repopulated with people from Cordoba.

What to see in Canillas de Aceituno ?


A stroll through this white village in Axarquia is a must. It has remained typical, with several vestiges of the past, and the food is very good!

At times we find ourselves in narrow streets that make us wonder about the structure of the houses, as below:

Canillas de Aceituno calle 2

And, as in other white villages, many houses are painted with whitewash.

canillas aceituno ventana

And here’s another nice little street with lots of umbrellas…

Canillas de Aceituno paraguas
calle en el centro

Hermitage of the Virgen del Carmen

In the village there is a surprisingly small hermitage.


The house of the Moorish Queen – Casa de la Reina Mora –


The house of “Reina Mora” or the “casa de los Diezmos”. This is nothing other than the tax centre during the Al Andalus period. It is therefore, if one can say so, the equivalent today is the Hacienda in Spain…

casa de la reina mora Canillas de Aceituno 2
casa de la reina mora

This centre levied a tax on the volume of mulberry leaves harvested. The peasants came to pay their tax in this house which can still be seen today.

Santa Catalina Church

canillas de aceituno iglesia Santa Catalina
Iglesia Santa Catalina

Walking around the church, we can find some remains of the old mosque.

canillas de aceituno fachada iglesia
fachada de la iglesia

On one side of the church is one of the prettiest streets in Canillas:

Canillas de Aceituno calle y macetas
calle con macetas

Taste the local gastronomy

If the dishes of the village resemble the typical dishes of the mountains of Málaga, there is one speciality that would be a shame to miss, because it is a delight, it is the chivo al horno (a must try).

Several restaurants offer it, and you won’t regret it, it’s a delicious dish.

Canillas de Aceituno restaurante
Restaurant in Canillas de Aceituno

And, among the most famous, there is the restaurant La Sociedad.

Hiking: El Saltillo

The village is the starting point for several hikes, including the most famous in the whole of Axarquia: the El Saltillo hike.

It is known locally as the Caminito del Rey de la Axarquia. The landscapes are magnificent, see: El Saltillo de Canillas de Aceituno hike.

The highlight of this hike is of course the passage over a suspension bridge, the 3rd longest hanging bridge in Spain. It connects Canillas de Aceituno to the village of Sedella.

el saltillo pont suspendu à canillas de aceituno
hanging bridge – El Saltillo hike –

This hike is one of the 10 stages of the Gran Senda Malaga (GR-249) that crosses the Axarquía.

Where does the El Saltillo hike start?

The easiest way is to start the El Saltillo walk in front of the town hall in Canillas de Aceituno.

For those who are going to walk towards the Maroma, just follow the sign:

canillas de aceituno cartel maroma

For those who are hiking up to the Maroma (Pico Tejeda), they will pass by the Rabita. It is a cave surrounded by mystery, already known during the time of Al-Andalus.

Legend has it that three Sufi clerics (a mystical current of Islam) were buried there. Officially, it is a mine that has never been exploited.

The Maroma

el saltillo randonnée à Canillas de Aceituno

Canillas de Aceituno is located at the foot of the Maroma. It is the highest mountain in the whole province of Málaga with an altitude of 2065 metres.

What to do in Canillas de Aceituno?


In the surroundings, it is possible to find very nice activities:

The village is one of the spots of astrotourism in the province of Malaga. Its location, as well as the villages of Alfarnate and Alfarnatejo, make it an ideal place to learn about astrotourism. You can also simply observe our Milky Way with the naked eye, and also have fun in August counting the perseids (shooting stars) before going to sleep…

For the amateurs, here is a link which will please you for an evening of astrotourism in Andalusia. The site is in the vicinity.

astrotourisme en andalousie le telescope 2

  • horse riding, on the beach or in the mountains
  • diving in Nerja and Torrox
  • guided tours (villages of Axarquia, Cordoba, Alhambra,…)
  • via ferrata (Caminito del Rey,…)
  • hiking (El Saltillo with the hanging bridge,…)
  • canyoning from Nerja
  • astrotourism
  • snorkeling
  • visit of caves

Use the following link to access all the activities to do. during your holidays. This link provides you with all the details of each activity.

Ideas for guided tours in the area

A very good local guide, Cipriano, offers thematic and seasonal guided tours of the villages of Axarquía.

local guide andalucia

For example, Cipriano organises the Ruta del Aceite y los Montes from Nerja, Torrox and Torre del Mar. This tour is only possible 4 months of the year, from February to May. This olive oil Tour is absolutely unique. A must-see!

olive variété verdial de velez
olive verdial

The guided tours are always done in small groups (2 to 8 people max.) to discover the authentic Axarquia.

In the following link you will find all the details and prices of the tours he offers.

The themes of the tours are: the white villages of Axarquia, the wine route, the raisin route, ….

Here are all the guided tours from Torrox, Nerja and Torre del Mar.

The ferias in Canillas de Aceituno


Where is Canillas de Aceituno?

Book an accommodation

Enter the desired dates to check availability.

Some useful links (car hire, other ideas for visits)

Easy and economical bookings

If you are in Andalucia as part of a tour with several major cities to visit, here are some links that may be of interest:


Seville, the capital of Andalucia, is a city full of treasures to discover and monuments to visit.

Door of Forgiveness – Seville Cathedral

Here you will find everything you can see in Seville in 3 days. And for those who will stay longer you will also find information on secret Seville and the Santa Cruz and Triana districts.


cadix cadiz cathedrale catedral cathedral cattedrale

Visit Cadiz, a city with an incredible past and great beauty, on the Costa del la Luz.


When you reach the Costa del Sol you will find in this link all must-sees in Malaga :

Street art next to the Picasso Museum Malaga


Discover what to see in Granada, and visit the Albaicin and Sacromonte districts:



And of course, visit Cordoba, the caliphate city, and the Juderia district


Experiences to discover in the province of Malaga

If you’re in the area for a few days, here’s a selection of great things to do:

Find more ideas for visits to authentic Andalucia: see the blog pages on Andalucia.

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Here are the latest articles on Andalucia

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