Cutar is a picturesque village located in the Axarquia region, nestled in the foothills of the Sierra Tejeda. The landscape is stunning with towering mountains and lush land filled with olive groves and vineyards that stretch down to the rivers La Cueva and Cutar. It’s an ideal destination for a peaceful holiday or an adventure-filled trip in the mountains. Its proximity to the coast makes it a great starting point to discover the rest of the Costa del Sol. Cutar is 40 kilometers away from Málaga city, which takes about an hour by car. The nearest coastal area is Vélez Málaga, which is 26 kilometers or a 40-minute drive to the south.
Keep in mind that transportation options to get to Cutar are limited, but visiting this charming village and exploring its surroundings is an enticing idea. A great solution to fully enjoy your visit to this beautiful village is to rent a car in Málaga.
History of Cutar
Cutar is a town on the Ruta de la Pasa (Raisin Route – DO Moscatel) that extends onto the northern slope of the Cutar hill. It sits in a beautiful landscape with hillside olive groves, vineyards, and beautiful gardens on the banks of the rivers Cueva and Cutar. Some say that the town’s name possibly originates from the Arab word cautzar or kautzar, meaning “the fountain of paradise,” while others believe that it derives from the Arabic phrase “Hisn Aqut,” which means Castle of Aqut, referring to a past fortification on whose grounds the town was built.
The Arab kingdom of Al Andalus named the village and built a castle there, which has since been demolished. Interestingly, there is a unique fountain within the village. In the late 16th century, the village began to be resettled by Old Christians from various parts of Spain.
Today, Cutar is a quiet and charming spot, perfect for rest and relaxation. Its history has been tumultuous, but it has managed to preserve its charm and beauty. In recent times, Cutar has become known for its production of oil and raisins of exquisite flavor.
Places to visit
After learning about the rich history of Cutar, it’s time to explore the village and its surroundings. Cutar has much to offer visitors, from its stunning natural beauty to its charming architecture and landmarks. Whether you’re interested in outdoor activities or cultural experiences, Cutar has something for everyone. In this section, we’ll highlight some of the top places to visit in and around Cutar.
The Arab Fountain (Fuente Árabe) is a unique landmark located in the village of Cutar. It is a square construction with openings, topped with an interior dome, where the fountain is located. The fountain is in perfect condition and is the only one of its kind found in the area. According to 16th-century documents, it was known as “Aina Alcaharia,” which means “The Fountain of the Hamlet”.
The Monfí Museum (Museo del Monfí) is a historical gem located in Cutar that offers a unique experience for visitors interested in Moorish culture in Andalusia. During the 14th, 15th, and 16th centuries, the Monfíes were a group of people who, due to their religion or customs, were forced to flee to the mountains to avoid persecution
It is a space dedicated to the manuscripts and the Quran found during works in the municipality. You will learn about the life of the Andalusian hamlet, the alfaquí Al-Yayar, and many aspects of great interest. An explanation of the evolutions as a Christian villa from its conquest. A tourist and cultural attraction to visit the municipality of Cútar, in the Axarquía region.
- Location: Calle Tintoreros, 1, 29718 Cútar, Málaga
- Phone: 952 554 247
Cerro de la Peña del Hierro
Cerro de la Peña del Hierro is a hill near Cutar where archaeologists have discovered evidence of prehistoric human presence in the area, dating back to the Neolithic and Bronze Ages. This territory likely served as a natural passage between the Lower and Upper Axarquía .
Archaeologists have also found remains of pottery and Roman coins between the Paome stream and the Benamargosa river, indicating settlements from ancient times. They have also discovered ceramic remains from the Arab period on Cerro de Cútar. It is believed that a castle once stood there, giving its name to the town .
Church of Our Lady of the Incarnation
The Parroquia Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación (Church of Our Lady of the Incarnation) stands at the highest point in Cutar. The church was originally built in the 16th century and has undergone two restorations since then, one in the 18th century and another in the mid-20th century. The Mudejar-style church features three naves separated by cruciform pillars.
In the 18th century, builders added a small dressing room to the Epistle nave. At the end of that century, they built a Rococo-style chapel with polychrome decoration on its triumphal arch, which many consider the most interesting part of the ensemble. After a reform in 1953, workers moved the chapel to the foot of the temple to house Our Lady of Angels and now San Roque.
Cuta celebrates several local festivals throughout the year. These festivals are a great opportunity to experience the town’s rich culture and traditions.
One of Cutar’s most popular festivals is the festival of San Roque, which takes place on the weekend closest to August 17th. The festival begins on Friday night with the selection of the festival queen, child queen, and mister. On Saturday, a Holy Mass is held in honor of San Roque and the Virgin of the Angels. In the afternoon, there are ribbon races and a procession of the patrons. The day is filled with performances that culminate with the final firecracker at five in the morning.
Fiesta del Monfí
In mid-October, Cutar celebrates the Fiesta del Monfí, a Moorish festival. The name “Monfí” refers not only to Moorish culture but also to the “persecuted” character suffered by those first inhabitants of these lands: the word monfí (munfi منفي in Arabic) means outlaw.
Fiestas in Honor of Our Lady of the Miraculous
At the end of July, Cutar’s Salto del Negro district celebrates its annual festival in honor of Our Lady of the Miraculous. These festivities are a time for residents and visitors to enjoy various performances, tastings, and activities typical of such events.
All Saints’ Day
On All Saints’ Day, people visit Cutar’s local cemetery to leave flowers for their loved ones.
If you’re planning a visit to Cutar, you might want to consider staying for lunch and trying out the local cuisine. Cutar’s food is typical of the Axarquía region and offers a range of delicious dishes for you to enjoy.
Cutar’s cuisine is characteristic of the Axarquía region and features dishes such as ajoblanco axarqueño, a cold soup made with almonds, garlic, bread, oil, vinegar, and water. Another popular dish is puchero de garbanzos y chorizo, a hearty stew made with chickpeas and chorizo. Gazpacho, a refreshing cold soup made with tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, bread, oil, vinegar, and water is also a staple in Cutar. Sopa de maimones is another local favorite; it’s a soup made with bread, garlic, oil, and salt.
In addition to its savory dishes, Cutar is also known for its Moscatel wine and sweet treats such as Tortas de leche or milk cakes.
Getting to Cutar in Malaga
One of the best ways to get from Malaga Airport to Cutar is by a car hire in Malaga. This gives you the freedom and flexibility to explore the area at your own pace. The drive from Malaga Airport to Cutar takes about 51 minutes. Alternatively, you could take a bus from Malaga Airport to El Borge, which takes about 2 hours and 29 minutes. Another option is to take a town car from Malaga Airport to Cutar, which takes about 1 hour and 5 minutes. However, renting a car at Malaga Airport is a convenient and efficient way to travel to Cutar.
- From Malaga Airport, head northeast on Av. del Comandante García Morato.
- Take the ramp to N-348/Av. de Velázquez.
- Merge onto N-348/Av. de Velázquez.
- Take the exit onto MA-20 toward Antequera/Sevilla/Granada/Motril.
- Continue on MA-20 and take the exit onto E-15/A-7 toward Almería/Motril.
- Follow E-15/A-7 until you reach exit 272 for A-356 toward Vélez-Málaga/Viñuela/Colmenar.
- Take exit 272 and continue on A-356 until you reach the MA-3113.
- Turn right onto MA-3113 and follow it until you reach Cutar.
The total distance is about 55 kilometers and the estimated travel time is about 51 minutes.