The Puente del Águila (Eagle Bridge) is jewel of Spanish architecture. The functioning aqueduct was built in the nineteenth century and is located to the south-west of the Nerja Caves. The structure is visible from the road linking Nerja and neighbouring village Maro.
When the aqueduct was built in 1879, its main purpose was to carry water from Nerja to the sugar cane refinery in Maro. It was commissioned by the San Juan factory owners and although the factory was later closed and abandoned, the aqueduct is still used to irrigate local farmland.
The design is in the typical Mudejar style, copied from the Muslim craftsmen who resided in Spain in the thirteen century. Above 37 stunning arches is a spire topped with a double-headed eagle.
The visible face of the aqueduct is actually the back of the structure. In fact, the aqueduct faces north and boasts a plaque that reads ‘pure and clean conception’.
During the Spanish Civil War, the construction was badly damaged by the shells fired during naval bombardments. For years, the aqueduct proudly displayed its battle scars. Up until half a million euros were budgeted for renovations in 2011, helping to restore the landmark.
The area has no timetable restrictions and a nearby layby allows visitors to stop and get a good look at the magnificent piece of architecture.