Walks in Cuenca Serrania Alta and Baja

The City of Cuenca is in Castilla-La-Mancha and is about two hours drive south east of Madrid Airport and about the same distance north west of Valencia. The old part of the city is built upon a narrow ridge high above the valleys of the Rio Júcar on one side and the Rio Huecar on the other. The city is a World Heritage Site and is probably most famous for its Casas Colgantes or hanging houses that have been built against the rock face overhanging the deep gorge below.

The city has a wide range of accommodation to suit all budgets but is very popular at weekends and during Public Holidays when prices can climb a little. From a driving point of view it would probably be best to choose accommodation outside the historic part of the city because of the narrow streets and parking difficulties. We used www.booking.com  but there are many others.

To the north of Cuenca lies the Serrania Alta which is a reasonably mountainous area with altitudes of up to about 1400m above sea level. The flora is Mediterranean with Pine, Holm Oak at higher levels and more deciduous woods at lower. Rosemary, Thyme and Lavender are common. In terms of wild life, we saw Griffon Vultures, Golden Eagles and a wide variety of smaller birds. We saw deer but not the wild pig that are common in the area.

To the south of Cuenca lies the Serrania Baja which is a vast area of open rolling farming countryside growing cereal crops and vast acreages of sun flowers. This picture shows one of the famous lagunas or small lakes that are to be found near Cañada del Hoyo in the Serrania Baja.

Given the altitude of the Region and its location in southern central Spain, extremes of climate and temperature can be expected. Mid summers can be very hot and snow can be expected high up during the winter months. Probably the best time for walking in the area would be mid March to l June and September to late November. We were there for two weeks at the end of September/early October 2018 and experienced dry weather with sun all day with temperatures of up to 27ºC. The evenings were markedly cool – down to 15ºC.
We have put together 10 hikes in the Easy to Moderate category. The majority are in the Serrania Alta with a small representation in the Serrania Baja. Most use established and marked routes and we have chosen them for their particular beauty and interest. Between them we hope they give a fair representation of this wonderful walking area. We hope you try it - you will not be disappointed.

Jim Arymar

Serrania Baja


You can use these pages to browse for walks in specific regions, counties and areas. It is a good idea to narrow down your search to the most local area possible, as the list of walks for larger areas can be very long. An alternative way of searching is to use the Find a Walk tool.

We would like to include a short article for each of the areas on these pages. If an area has no article and you can send us a few hundred words about the area, pointing out its key attractions and other useful information, we would greatly appreciate it.