Altitude: 60 m
Distance to Malaga: 53 km
Distance to coast: 0 km
The Nerja Caves are located close to Maro. Few visitors knew anything about this part of the coast until 1959, when five young boys, out hunting for bats behind Maro discovered a remarkable system of caves and ancient cave paintings. Now the caves attract visitors every day who come to wonder at this underground cathedral with its strange, melting-wax rocky architecture and what is reputed to be the largest natural column in the world.
On Halloween, the last day of October, Maro celebrates an ancestral tradition by paying tribute to the chestnut! The Chestnut Fiesta brings locals and visitors together to participate in the consumption of thousands of kilos of the dried fruit together with another speciality of the area, roast sweet potato. Live music, entertainment and dancing continue into the night. Details of Maro and Nerja´s other annual festivals can be found on our fiestas page.
Maro`s whitewashed buildings are a good example of the common domestic architecture in towns and villages on this part of the Mediterranean coastline. The village dates back to the early Christian era, its first structure being the Roman fortification known historically as Detunda, meaning "defence." This is now the site of the Plaza de la Iglesia, the Casa Granade and the begining of Calle Ancha.
It is a genuine pleasure to stroll through the village streets, with flowerpots on balconies and all the charm of a true Andalucian coastal village. One of the most beautiful streets is Calle Maravillas, where one can look out over the sea from the vantage points. There are also wonderful views from here of the surrounding countryside. Beside the Balcón de Maro, one finds the Iglesia de Nuestra Séñora de las Maravillas, dating from the 17th century. Here also is the Casa Grande and the ruins of the old sugar works, the building of which began in 1585, financed by the then Lord of Maro, Luis de Armengol.
Not far from the village centre, beside the N-340 road going towards Nerja, is another famous monument, the Águila Aqueduct. This was built between 1879 and 1880, to ensure that water would reach the San Joaquín sugar factory. There is a section of old Roman road beside the sugar factory, on the way from Antonino de Cástulo to Malaca, on which the Detunda fortification was built.
Maro has a population of 800 and is still unspoilt, yet boasts excellent tapas bars and popular restaurants from where the views across open fields to the sea are quite spectacular.