Field Trips 2018-05-04T12:35:11+00:00

IBS Malaga 2019 – Field Trips

Planning is in the works for the following field excursions the day before and/or the days after the conference (note – trips may change in the coming months while details are finalized):

In a nature reserve in the Malaga Mountains is El Caminito del Rey – a 3 km elevated path along the sides of vertical walls and over a footbridge through Gaitanes Gorge.  Aleppo and stone pines, holm oaks and Eucalyptus trees, juniper, Mediterranean fan palms, brooms, rockroses, and riverside plants (rushes, reeds, canes, oleanders and tamarisks) can be found in the area, along with Egyptian vulture, griffon vulture, golden eagle, and honey buzzard, mountain goats in the upper reaches, and numerous species of amphibians and reptiles and small mammals.  Read more about the area and nature here!

By contrast, a trip to the Fuente de Piedra Lagoon takes in the largest wetland area in inland Andalusia – a 6 km long, shallow, salt water lake, once used by Romans (and others through to the 1950’s) for salt production.  Now home to the largest colony of flamingos in the Iberian Peninsula and home or stopping place for 170 other species of birds including the white-headed duck, grey heron and the slender-billed gull.  Some unusual vegetation is present in the surrounding area due to the high salt content, alternating with cultivated fields.

Nerja Caves / Andalusian Village / Boat trip (seabirds)

Start with a trip to the Nerja Caves – a major geological and archeological site inhabited from about 25,000 BC up until the the Bronze Age and rediscovered in 1959.  The caves are a series of huge caverns stretching for almost five kilometres, and home to the world’s largest stalagmite – a 32 metre high column measuring 13 metres by 7 metres at its base – and some amazing archaeological finds!  Find out more about the caves here 

Nearby the caves is Frigiliana – a beautiful Andalusian Village on the mountainside, with a maze of cobbled streets and whitewashed houses, influenced by the Berber architecture of North Africa.  On a clear day you can see the North African coastline, along with amazing views of the surrounding area, while wandering the steep and winding streets of this charming mountainside town.

Finally round out your underground/on the ground exploring with some on-water exploring – take a boat trip out to look for sea birds!

Andalusian Village (Mijas) / Boat trip (Cetaceans)

Explore the local architecture, pottery and atmosphere of the Andalusian village of Mijas – a beautiful whitewashed town on the hillside, about 10 km from the coast, before heading out to look for whales and dolphins in the Strait of Gibraltar.  Possible sightings this time of year are varied and might include Sperm Whales, Long Fin Pilot Whales and several types of dolphins (Common Dolphin, Bottlenose Dolphin and Striped Dolphin).

El Caminito del Rey is a 3 km elevated path along the sides of vertical walls, through a canyon with a footbridge over the gorge.  See the write up above, on a similar trip.  Read more about the area and nature here!

Additionally, hike in El Torcal de Antequera – a karstic landscape marked as a special zone for the protection of birds, and a geological and archaeological significant area of varied flora and fauna.  A variety of hikes are available in the area – tour may include guided hikes through ‘the Route of the Ammonites’ and the ‘Karstic Labrynth’.

Note:  Hikes require being comfortable with heights, medium level of fitness, and cover rocky, irregular terrain.  Not recommended for those with mobility issues.

Malaga City Tour

There’s so much to see in Málaga City that it will be hard to decide what to fit into one day – amazing museums and historical architecture spanning centuries abound!  Learn about this beautiful seaside port’s arts, culture and history with a tour guide to show you the sights.

Additional Possibilities

Field Trips are still being finalized, and the following options are being looked into:

Valley of the River Genal

Sierra de las Nieves

Skiing in Sierra Nevada

Strait of Gibraltar (European side)

Strait of Gibraltar (African side)