In Málaga you have an immense quantity of beautiful spots to visit, but if there is something you shouldn’t miss, that is this archaeological ensemble, pronounced World Cultural Heritage by the Unesco in 2016. It has three cultural monuments, the dolmens, and two natural monuments, the Lovers’ Rock and the Torcal of Antequera. Let us invite you to stop by our office, rent your car and visit this piece of history without a fear!
A dolmen is a human structure of a prehistoric era that is built by different stones driven vertically into the ground, with another stone placed horizontally above these, as a cover. In Antequera, we have three different ones: the Dolmen of Menga, the Dolmen of Viera and the Tholos of El Romeral.
All three have colossal dimensions and were built between the Neolithic and the Chalcolithic and were used for funerals and rituals. These are testimonies that back in these times, an architectural planning was made, since these have unique shapes, being Menga and Viera dolmens’ covered spaces with a lintel, and the Tholos of El Romeral having a fake dome.
The usual for these kinds of monuments would be to be oriented towards the sunrise, however they are oriented towards the Lovers’ Rock and the Torcal, making the historians believe that these are sacred mountains. Plus, on the inside of Dolmen of Menga, you can find a deep well, another testimony of the complex relationship of men and nature of these times.
These three funerary monuments are considered a very rich sample of European megalithic architecture, since they have a great variety of designs and technical differences. You can visit them on your own, but we recommend you take a guided visit, so you can learn more about their history, and to guarantee your access, since opening times vary a lot depending on the time of the year.
THE LOVERS’ ROCK
We recommend you visit this tiny mountain for its singular shape that reminds you of a human face, and for its odd popular story where a Christian boy that served in the house of a rich Moorish family fell in love with the daughter of said family, who also fell in love with him. They had to keep their love a secret, until they decided to elope. Of course, the girl’s father was not okay with that, and chased them along with his entourage until they were cornered on the top of this rock. The couple, to avoid turning themselves in and have their love affair put to an end, decided to end their lives, and in a hug, they jumped into the abyss from the top of the rock. Depending on who tells the story, it is also possible that instead of a servant boy, he was a Christian soldier of King Fernando, and she was Tazgona, the daughter of a Muslim King. The legend says that this tragical ending moved both kings enough to end the battle from both sides.
Although you can view it from almost any place in Antequera, since it broadly dominates the skyline, a good visit would be to get to the Alcazaba to watch its human-like profile from there, and then maybe take a walk around the Paseo de las Babacanas, the Arco de los Gigantes and the Mirador de las Almenillas.
TORCAL DE ANTEQUERA
The natural region of the Torcal de Antequera has a unique karstic landscape, a name that is given from a region between Italy and Slovenia where it’s very common, and that is created by water eroding the limestone rocks. In this case, the scenery is formed by marine limestone deposits that have been accumulated since over 200 million years ago, and that have been eroding by the action of the wind, the snow, and the rain.
It also has caves and chasms that record human presence since the prehistoric era, and you can find different marine fossils in a great number of points, besides viewpoints and the famous Tornillo (screw) del Torcal, a rock that has been shaped like a screw by the action of the elements. Its possible to visit this place by car, arriving there through complicated mountain roads that will make an expert driver happy, but if you wish for something more special, there are also interesting hiking routes through the Torcal in which you can get to know its great range of plant and animal life, as well as the eye-catching passages between the naturally carved rock.
Now that we have introduced to you the historical ensemble of Antequera’s Dolmens, you simply have to plan the rest of your visit to Málaga. You can rent your car with us, see the capital with all its highlights, and maybe later take some time to visit some charming towns of the province, or even take a trip to Sierra Nevada if you want to drive for a while. What do you think? Are you coming on your next holidays?