Caves of Nerja: the stunning stalactite caves of Nerja

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The caves of Nerja have made it to second place in my TOP 5 in Nerja. Not without reason! I’ve already seen some caves, but this one is unbelievable. This year I visited the surprise cave “Hang Sung Sot” in Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. No doubt this is impressive, but the caves of Nerja overwhelmed me at first sight. I think the design of the cave rooms is incredible. The rooms are very high and have huge rocks that let the scenery look amazing.

cuevas de nerja

The caves of Nerja: all information and tips

Getting to the caves of Nerja

The car is the easiest choice. Leave Nerja in the direction of Maro with the coastal road N-340. From there, the caves of Nerja is well signposted. On your way to the caves you will see the aqueduct of Nerja. It is worth a stop to take pictures and enjoy the view. After ten minutes you will reach the caves of Nerja. In front of the entrance, you will find plenty of paid parking.

The bus is your choice if you are not mobile. Buses run daily from the bus stop in Nerja towards Maro. The fifteen-minute drive costs about one euro.

Timetable from Nerja to caves of Nerja

Departure times Monday – Saturday:
08:30, 09:40, 10:40, 11:30, 12:25, 13:10, 13:30, 14:55, 15:55, 16:40, 17:30, 18:15, 20:00

Departure times Sunday and holidays:
08:30, 09:40, 10:40, 12:25, 13:10, 13:30, 14:55, 15:55, 16:40, 17:30, 20:00

Timetable from caves of Nerja to Nerja

Departure times Monday – Saturday:
08:05, 08:50, 09:30, 11:00, 12:00, 12:45, 13:30, 14:40, 16:15, 17:00, 18:00, 18:30, 19:30, 21:05

Departure times Sunday and holidays:
08:05, 11:00, 12:00, 12:45, 13:30, 14:40, 16:15, 17:00, 18:00, 18:30, 19:30, 21:05

Cueva Tren Nerja

The Cueva Tren is a means of transport that resembles a train and always leaves the same route from Nerja to Maro. Children will also get their money’s worth. Usually, The caves of Nerja offers this special service only in the months of July and August. Transport is by the hop on / hop off principle. This means you can get on and off as you like at certain points on the route. When you buy a ticket at the Museum of Nerja, you also get the entrance to the caves of Nerja and the museum.

The stops are:

Cueva – Cuevas de Nerja / Barco – At the big boat at the park Verano Azul in Nerja / Mueso – At the museum at Plaza Espana (At the entrance of the underground parking) / Maro – At Plaza de Maro

cueva tren nerja

cueva tren nerja timetable
cueva tren nerja timetable

Opening hours and tickets for the caves of Nerja

The caves of Nerja are open every day. The exception is the New Year on the 1st of January and the holiday of the Romeria de San Isidro on the 15th of May.

Opening hours in winter (September to June)
09:00 – 16:00 clock – Admission every 30 minutes. Last admission at 15:30.

Opening hours in summer (July, August and on Thursday, Friday und Sunday during the Easter holidays)
09:00 – 18:30 clock – Admission every 30 minutes. Last admission at 18:00.

In high season, I recommend planning the visit in the morning. The rush can be so big that the tickets are already sold out in the early afternoon. It can take one to two hours from the purchase of a card to the entry of the cave.

Admission fees

Without Guide/Audio-Guide
Adults: 10,00 Euro
Children (6 – 12 years): 6,00 Euro
Children (under 6 years): free entrance

With Guide/Audio-Guide and Cueva Tren
Adults: 12,00 Euro
Children (6 – 12 years): 8,00 Euro
Children (under 6 years): free entrance

cuevas de nerja eintritt

Guided tours are only available in Spanish. With the audio guide the languages Spanish, English and German are available. Stairs and walkways in the caves of Nerja are very well developed and therefore perfectly walkable. For wheelchair users, there is no access possible.

You can also buy your ticket online in advance in the Nerja ticket shop.

Exclusive tours of the caves of Nerja

The exclusive tours take place outside opening hours. Two of the tours give you access to areas in the caves that are inaccessible to ordinary visitors. I’ll explain how the tours differ from each other and which chambers and halls will be on display. Below you will find a description of the structure of the caves so that you can get a better picture of it.

cuevas de nerja führung

Nocturna (night tour)
Saturdays 18:00 – in July and August 19:30

Equipped only with a headlamp you discover the caves with the same experience as the young explorers did. In total darkness you experience the caves of Nerja in a very special way. The guided tour includes the same tour and visits as during the day.

Secretos de la Cueva (The Secrets of the Cave)
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday 17:00 – in July and August 18:30

With this tour, you will get more insights than usual. As the name suggests, you will seek out the secrets of the cave and see areas that are denied to the normal visitor.

El Descubrimiento (The Discovery)
Saturdays 17:00 – in July and August 18:30

You will need good footwear, as you will descend into the chambers La Torca and La Mina. In addition to the main entrance, which has subsequently been opened to the public they will show you the two chambers that give different access to the cave. There you will experience centuries of history of the first inhabitants of the cave and will see the original access that the young explorers have used to get into the cave. The tour is limited to the chambers and therefore will not go through the usual tour and the tourist gallery. A good choice, if you want to visit the caves of Nerja a second time. Since the paths are poorly developed, the tour is not suitable for children under 10 years.

Admission fees for the exclusive tours are 15 Euro for adults, 7 Euro for children from 6 to 12 years and free for children under 6 years.

Restaurant

To strengthen before or after the adventure, a restaurant is located next to the entrance. I ordered only one drink in this restaurant and sat down at a table on the balcony with an excellent view of the sea. If you believe Tripadvisor reviews, the food is just average Spanish food.

The discovery of the caves by five children from Maro

The caves were discovered on January 12, 1959, by five friends who went through a hole in the La Mina chamber. Even today, a statue on the Balcon de Europa reminds people of this special discovery.

cuevas de nerja entdeckung

Structure of the caves

The caves have two natural entrances. The entrances lead through the chambers La Torca and La Mina. For visitors, a third main entrance to the cave was opened in 1960, providing easy access to the cave. The cave system is divided into two areas.

The first part is open to the public and includes the entrance hall and the tourist gallery. It has an area of 9,371 square meters and is equivalent to about one third of the entire cave. The gallery is a cave section in the caves of Nerja.

The second part is not open to the public and can not be visited with an exclusive tour. Here are the High Gallery, which was discovered in 1960 and the New Gallery, which was discovered in 1969. These are still being researched by researchers, as they give many lessons from thousands of years. In February 2012, it was published that in this part of the cave ancient paintings were found by our ancestors the Neanderthals.

The museum in the center of Nerja

More information about the caves of Nerja and the history of Nerja can be found in the museum. If you buy your ticket to the caves in the museum, the entrance to the museum is free and you can use the Cueva Tren, which starts behind the entrance of the museum (only in July and August).

museum nerja

Events

Every summer, the internationally renowned music and dance festival takes place in the caves of Nerja. The underground halls provide enough space for musicians and visitors over an area of 140,000 square meters and a length of 700 meters. The program includes many famous Spanish artists. The acoustics in the cave give the music a very special sound. Tickets and program can be found on the website of the Cuevas de Nerja.

The caves of Nerja belong to a natural event that can be admired by young and old. I can promise you that you will not regret the visit to the caves.

Do you have any other tips for a trip to the caves of Nerja?

Have you already gained experience in the caves of Nerja? Are there any other helpful tips that might help? I would be happy to hear from you in the comments.

Do you have any unanswered questions on this subject? Then just write me in the comments and I will answer them in the best possible way for you.

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Read more

Top 5 in Nerja: the best experiences presented in a nutshell

The best activities in Nerja for summer and winter

Balcon de Europa: Nerja’s viewing platform with great views

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