Charco Azul Chulilla is one of prettiest places in the Los Serranos region. So it’s no wonder that it’s often the main reason visitors come to this charming whitewashed town in Spain.
Cascading down a hillside overlooked by the ruins of an ancient Moorish castle, there’s plenty of things to do in and around Chulilla. But in this blog post we’ll just be focusing on how to get to Charco Azul and answering the most FAQ’s about making a trip here.
What Is Charco Azul Chulilla?
Roughly translated as blue puddle, Charco Azul is a swell in the River Turia was created by a 12th century Moorish weir built here in the gorge to irrigate the town’s orchards. And whilst it isn’t used for that anymore, the big pool of water still exists.
The vivid turquoise colour of the water against the bright orange colour of the surrounding gorge walls make it both a photogenic landscape and an inviting natural swimming spot.
Just a safety note on that quickly, that whilst the jetty is safe, the dilapidated walkways around the edge really are not. The photos you see of people climbing along them are old and the structure is no longer secure. Hopefully it gets repaired at some point in the future.
Charco Azul Hiking Route
To get to Charco Azul Chulilla it’s a short picturesque hike into the gorge and along the river from the centre of town. It’s a circular route and around 4km in length. It should take about an hour depending on your walking pace.
The Charco Azul hiking route is signposted as SL-CV 74, you can find a map of it here.
Starting in the main square, Plaza de la Baronía, make your way down to Calle Charco Azul. From here you’ll descend through some orchards and into the River Turia gorge. Climbing down you’ll come to a fork in the path.
Going right you’ll walk over part of an old hydroelectric plant and then need to hang a left through some shrub to cross over some slightly precarious stepping stones. If you get the broken walkways attached to the rock side you’ve gone too far.
Heading left you’ll go down some steps to the river and then through some large boulders and over a wooden footbridge. This is the way we would suggest as it’s better maintained. But both routes lead onto the same path which takes you right up to Charco Azul.
On the way back out, rather than retracing your footsteps, carry on following the river past where you entered the gorge. It’s a beautiful walk and you’ll pass by some other small pools as well as the La Cueva del Gollizno (Gollizno Cave).
Little by little you’ll see the town start to reappear again in the distance and after ascending through the steep streets end up where you started. You can of course do the route in the opposite direction also. Or you can tag it onto the Hanging Bridges hiking route.
Charco Azul Viewpoints
There is also a bird eye view of Charco Azul Chulilla along the first section of the Hanging Bridges of Chulilla trail too. It’s pretty awesome to see it from such a different perspective.
Charco Azul Valencia FAQ’s
Can you swim in Charco Azul?
Yes, it is safe to swim in Charco Azul. Although do be aware that even in summer, due to the depth of the water and the shade from the gorge, it is still pretty damn cold.
Where can I park nearby?
The nearest carpark to the start of the hiking route for Charco Azul Chulilla is on Calle Lavadero. It is only small though, there’s only like 15 spaces.
There is a larger car parking areas off Avenida Ermita as you come into town from the South. And another off Calle Maestro Amblar through the other side of town as you head North.
How long is the Charco Azul hike?
The length of the Charco Azul hike is just under 4km which will take around an hour walking at a moderate pace.
Can kids do the Charco Azul hike?
This is a great hike to do with kids as it is short, relatively flat once you are inside the gorge and there’s plenty of fascinating nature to spot on route. The river crossing points are shallow but add another level of enjoyment to the hike.
Is there an entrance fee for Charco Azul Valencia?
No, there is no entrance fee to visit Charco Azul in Valencia.
Is the route signposted?
Yes, the Charco Azul Chulilla hiking route is signposted as the SL-CV 74 trail.
When is the best time to visit Charco Azul?
Charco Azul Chulilla is open all year round. But it does get very hot in the gorge over the summer months and there isn’t too much shade, so it’s best to avoid the hottest part of the day. Naturally, as a popular Chulilla tourist attraction it is busier on weekends and holidays.
Can I take dogs to Charco Azul?
Yes, absolutely. Charco Azul Chulilla is a great place to hike with dogs. Just be mindful that there are narrower parts of the descent where you will need to keep them on a lead. Both for their own safety and that of others.
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Yorkshire born & bred, Sarah is a professional blogger who loves to travel. Pushing her boundaries with new adventures is her jam, so you likely won’t find her in one place for too long. Also a serious Marmite addict.