- Cycling between 3 of the most magnificent cities in Andalucia
- Travelling through rolling sierras and olive plantations
- Making use of the Vias Verdes
- Exploring the architectural wonders of Granada
- Visiting Cordoba – the birth place of Spanish Flamenco
- Celebrating your trip in the capital of the south, Seville
Following your transfer from Malaga airport (approx. 1.5 hours), we ask that you make your way to a local bike shop in Granada (approx. 10 mins walk from your hotel), where you’ll receive your rental bikes (if renting) and have your welcome meeting. This is the perfect time to ask any questions you may have about the week ahead.
Granada is almost unrivalled for its beauty, architecture and the setting isn’t bad either! Set at the foot of the imposing Sierra Nevada, with the Alhambra towering above it, it is a truly unforgettable city. In this legendary city, renowned for its amazing Moorish architecture, you can take a tour of the World Heritage-listed Alhambra and Generalife Gardens, one of Andalucia’s special highlights. In the mosaic-tiled and landscaped gardens of the Alhambra, discover the culture and history of Spain’s Moorish rulers and admire their exotic architectural legacy.
As evening arrives you could watch a Gypsy Zambra flamenco show in Granada’s Gypsy quarter, Sacramonte. We’d also recommend a traditional, evening tapas tour of Granada, probably one of the best ways to see the city and the people who live there.
A visit to the Alhambra is not included in the trip and to fully appreciate this magnificent building and the city we recommend that you arrive into Granada a day or two early.
- Meals: Breakfast
After breakfast a quick transfer by minibus, will whisk you out of the city center to the peace of the Andalucian countryside.
Once on the bike, you will begin a 6 km climb as you make your way out of Loja. The back lanes then thread a trail past impressive rock formations towards the Sierra Subbetica. Today’s riding is a heady mix of classic Andalucian culture; from parched craggy sierras and olive and almond groves to white-washed villages.
After lunch your route takes you deeper into this stunning sierra, whose dramatic peaks are home to southern Spain’s largest breeding colony of the majestic griffon vulture, as well as Bonnelli’s and Booted eagles. Priego soon comes into view, perched on an escarpment that overlooks the rolling mountainsides. Much of the city’s grandeur is due to the booming silk production in the 18th century.
- Meals: Breakfast
Today the route will take you around to the northern edge of the Sierras Subbetica. The trail leads you through the rustic town of Luque, notable for its medieval castle, Albenzaide, as well as its parochial church at the Plaza de España. Here marks the ideal spot to stop for a coffee.
You’ll soon arrive at the pretty village of Zuheros with its 9th-century, Moorish castle perched on a limestone crag, proudly guarding the fertile lands below. The village is engulfed by magnificent limestone cliffs which seemingly contort themselves into wonderful shapes. Zuheros will be your home for the night. Today’s relatively short ride should leave you with plenty of time to spend the afternoon visiting the Cueva de los Murcielagos, a bat cave with fascinating paintings, prehistoric skeletons and geological formations
- Meals: Breakfast
From Zuheros you’ll pick up the Via Verde del Aceite, a cycle way which drops through olive groves to Baena. The intoxicating scent of olive pressing fills the air, and if you‘re lucky you may see some olive pressing in action! Baena is at the centre of the olive oil industry and you’ll likely see some hand pickers labouring over ancient trees, as well as modern pneumatic shakers harvesting the fruit with ease.
Leaving Baena behind, it’ll become ever clearer that you‘re in northern Andalucia, with olive groves lining the roads and horizons – it’s an incredible sight. No wonder Spain is the undisputed leader in olive oil production as they have 2.4 million hectares dedicated to it, producing over 1 million tonnes of oil annually! Your accommodation for the evening is an old olive farm which has been renovated into a hotel, an ideal place to relax in the late afternoon sunshine.
Before heading out today, please stock up with supplies and particularly water, as there may not always be an opportunity to buy water en-route.
- Meals: Breakfast
Today you’ll cycle on back lanes, before you reach the mighty Guadalquivir River; its name means great valley in Arabic and it is the main artery for Andalucia. Once again it’s a good idea to stock up with water before setting off!
You’ll soon enter the city of Cordoba over the impressive Roman Bridge; this short, gentle day in the saddle means you will have plenty of time to explore one of the true wonders of Andalucia, Cordoba’s Mezquita. Discover the city’s mix of Jewish and Arab culture and admire Cordoba’s medieval architecture, with its white-washed courtyards, winding alleys and leafy squares.
After a late afternoon siesta you can head out for an early evening dinner in one of the famous ‘Patios de Cordoba’ and why not top off the evening with the delights of a traditional Flamenco show? If you’d like some more time in the saddle, we can arrange a longer ride today.
- Meals: Breakfast
Today you’ll set off on another of Andalucia’s Vias Verdes, the cycle way of La Campina, which takes you on a leisurely ride through crops and rolling hills, filled with spring flowers early in the year. The area was once known as the ‘bread basket’ of the whole Roman Empire and wheat is still grown here today. You’ll be riding today over varying terrain with some bumpy / loose sections.
You will roll on to Ecija, nicknamed the frying pan of Spain due to being one of the hottest places in Spain in the summer. It’s a town famously known for its eleven towers and fifteen bell towers. It’s a relaxing place to stay the night, with plenty of good restaurants serving delicious, Andalucian delicacies.
- Meals: Breakfast
This is the longest day on paper but one with few hills, as you will weave your way down the vast Guadalquivir valley. The dark hills of the Sierra Morena offer great vistas to the north, while your pedals keep turning for the last full day in the saddle.
The route is punctuated by various settlements, the most notable being Fuentes de Andalucia, which has an ethnographic museum celebrating remains of humans found over 200,000 years ago.
Deserted lanes and fields full of swaying wheat will lead you on to the enchanting, small town of Carmona, once a Roman strong hold in Iberia. The Moors put their stamp on it by making it almost impregnable with vast walls. The town holds many monuments waiting to be discovered.
Carmona has a proud culinary tradition and is infamous for salmorejo, partridge, cured ham and snails. Enjoy!
- Meals: Breakfast
After breakfast you’ll have a short cycle through open countryside to Brenes, where you will catch your train into the great city of Seville, the seductive capital of the south. Train ticket costs approx. 4 euros per person, and is not included in trip cost.
Your afternoon can be spent exploring the city by bike. You can ride through the most interesting places of Triana, the old historic center, the María Luisa Park, Plaza de España, the classic and the modern Seville.
You can take a stroll around the old quarter of Seville taking in the UNESCO World Heritage sights of the Cathedral and the towering Giralda, or the breathtaking Alcazaba palace and its gardens. In the evening, you’ll have chance to wander with the locals along the riverside, visit one of the city’s legendary bars or experience the drama and passion of flamenco at a Seville flamenco show (cost not included). The lively Barrio de Santa Cruz is a great place to head for a fun evening sampling the best tapas in Seville’s electric, evening atmosphere.
Seville is a captivating city which you would never do justice in half a day, so to discover it at your own pace we’d recommend an extension at the end of your trip. Please get in touch if we can help you with any extra nights.
During the trip you will ride on a variety of surfaces, including back lanes, cyclepaths and some hard-packed gravel / dirt tracks. Be prepared for a hilly start to the week, with some steeper climbs (particularly the first 2 days). Things do even out after you reach Cordoba (day 5). 70% of the time the roads are shared with vehicle traffic, which are most busy when entering and leaving the cities. You’ll also be able to enjoy some traffic-free routes throughout the week! Hybrid bikes are recommended for this tour (not suitable for road bikes).
Leisure Cycling Grade
Distances generally between 20-45 miles / 32-72 kms per day
For the leisure cyclist with a good level of physical fitness
May include some steeper, cheeky climbs and possibly sections of varying terrain (eg. forest tracks, gravel paths etc)
Our grading guidelines have been carefully created based on our many years of cycling experience, as well as customer feedback from our trips. Of course, if you're still struggling to figure out where you fit on the scale, do feel free to give us a quick call and we'll be more than happy to help!
For more information about our grading system click here.
Is this suitable for you?
Although you may not cycle everyday, you do keep yourself relatively fit and maybe enjoy an afternoon out on your bike at the weekend. Your preference is perhaps for flatter terrain but you don’t mind tackling some hills, and the occasional steep climb if you can take it at your own pace. For those happy to tackle some ups and downs, and possibly some sections of varying terrain (eg. forest tracks, gravel paths etc) we’d recommend our grade 3 trips. We’d generally expect those on a Grade 3 holiday to have a decent level of physical fitness and be comfortable with some longer days in the saddle.
Dates & Prices
2021 Daily departures available from 01 Mar – 31 Dec (excluding dates from 1st Jul to 10 Sep)
Season 1 For trips starting between (and inclusive of) 01 Mar and 27 Mar, 06 Apr and 21 Apr, 04 May and 30 Jun, or 11 Sep and 31 Dec: £1445 pp.
Season 2 For trips starting between (and inclusive of) the 28 Mar and 05 Apr, or 22 Apr and 03 May: £1635 pp.
Alternatively for a great value trip choose one of our scheduled departures below.
A) Accommodation (shared twin / double en suite rooms) in a mixture of 2*, 3* and 4* hotels
B) Meals as per the itinerary (B-Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
C) English-speaking local representative (with welcome meeting)
D) Detailed route notes and maps
E) Luggage transfers
F) Airport transfer on scheduled arrival day from Malaga airport (AGP)
G) Airport transfer on scheduled departure day to Seville airport (SVQ)
What's not Included
A) Bike hire (available if required)
B) Flights and charges for travelling with your bike (if applicable)
C) Meals not stated in the itinerary
D) Single room (available if required)
E) Travel insurance
F) Personal clothing and equipment
G) Personal expenditure (souvenirs, bar bills, hotel facilities etc)
H) Entrance fees to museums and other attractions en route
I) Train journey on day 8
J) Airport transfers on days other than the scheduled arrival / departure days
12 Hours in... Seville!
Find out more about this timeless city that is worth being on your bucket list...
The Times (2017), The 50 best holidays in SpainAs seen in the press...
Spain’s vias verdes are abandoned railway lines that are now cycle paths and, new for 2017, Skedaddle has a fantastic cycling tour along some of Andalusia’s finest. You’ll visit the beautiful sun-soaked cities of Granada, Cordoba and Seville, and pedal along the Via Verde del Aceite, past limestone cliffs and olive groves, and along the peaceful Guadalquivir valley. You’ll stay in small towns along the route and cycle between 21km and 59km each day.
Metro (2017), Spring breaks that are off the chainAs seen in the press...
Vias Verdes are disused spanish railway lines turned into leafy walking or cycling paths. Bike holiday specialist Saddle Skedaddle’s newest tours utilise these networks to link up andalucia’s holy trinity of beautiful cities. The trip starts in Granada, handsome below its mighty alhambra fortress, before pedalling off into a rural land of parched sierras, olive-oil farms and white-walled villages. Dinner on one of Cordoba’s famous patios is followed by rides across wheat fields en route to the Guadalquivir river. Last up is seville, its flamenco scene likely to rouse even the most saddle-sore hips.