Álora is a typical pueblo blanco, a whitewashed village in Andalucia. It is nestled between three rocky spurs topped by the ruins of the castle.
The municipality covers an area of 169 km² that covers a wide territory in which the large landforms of Málaga are located. The hills are occupied by cereal, olive and oak trees and orchards of fruit and vegetables that cover the valley floor. Its population was about 13,000 in 2008.
Álora's history dates back to prehistoric times in the Hoyo del Conde, a little over a kilometre from the city. The ecological environment (hunting, water, natural protection) favoured this presence until the Turdetanis of Tartessos and the Phoenicians discovered the commercial potential of the area. The latter built the foundations of the castle, which the Romans would take advantage of by fortifying it.
Álora is the crown in the Valle del Guadalhorce between three hills on the right bank of the Guadalhorce river and on the railway route between Málaga and Seville, Córdoba or Granada. The towers of its castle, lookouts for the movement of people and goods to the inner lands, in the realms of Bobastro, stand over the town which is sheltered discretely between two small headlands and Mount Hacho (559 m).
Buses run by Málaga Metropolitan Transport Consortium (Consorcio de Transporte Metropolitano del Área de Málaga) are the main form of transport around the town of Álora and the villages of the metropolitan area.
Trains run between Málaga and Álora throughout the day, although with varying frequency. The line, known as the C2 Suburban Line, runs from Malaga Renfe (the main railway station) to Álora. The journey takes about half an hour.
Álora can be explored on foot, although from the railway station it is a moderate uphill walk to reach the main part of the town.
- The castle, set on top of a hill and with views over the surrounding hills. It is used as a cemetery today. Álora's castle was built by the Phoenicians and expanded under Roman rule. In the 5th century the castle was virtually destroyed by the Visigoths, then rebuilt under the Moors; remnants of this era still remain, namely the decorative steel door and the traditional Arab mirador.
- Church and convent of Nuestra Señora de Flores (16th century)
- Iglesia de la Veracruz (16th century)
- Church of Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación, on the site of the castle's mosque. It houses a crucifix by José Navas Parejo.
- Chapel of St. Brigida (16th century)
- Chapel of Las Torres (15th century), in late Gothic style
- El Caminito del Rey (King's Little Path), Between Ardales and Álora. This Camino del Rey was built in 1901 by a hydraulic company for the needs of the construction of a dam. It is a 3-km via ferrata (secured rock climbing) in the Gorges d' El Chorro (Los Ardales natural park), formerly “the most dangerous path in the world”. It is now completely secure and accessible to families.
- El Urogallo — a local restaurant next to the building where Guardia Civil is headquartered in Alora.