Spain: Dream trip through Andalusia
Are you looking to travel comfortably and simultaneously explore the beautiful landscape of Andalusia? This train trip is just the thing for you! Andalusia is a region in southern Spain that contains a range of sites.
On this Spain itinerary, you’ll be able to see the stunning Alhambra palace, snow-capped peaks in the Sierra Nevada, and endless olive fields. From Seville via Cordoba to Granada and Malaga, then from Ronda via Gibraltar, Cadíz, and finally to Jerez de la Frontera, a journey to explore the southern Spanish culture.
Price Range: $$$
Recommended Days: 14 Days
Riding Hours: Approx. 12 – 13 hr
Distance: 750 km
Transportation: Train, Bus
Seville: One Of The Most Beautiful Cities In Europe
The capital of the Andalusian region and the fourth-largest city in Spain has much to offer: Architectural masterpieces from different eras, home of flamenco dancing, typical Spanish tapas, and many leisure activities until late into the night.
We recommend “Bodega Santa Cruz” for authentic tapas: low-key, full of locals, cheap and tasty. Make sure to visit Alcázar, the royal palace which is still in use today; and, for a great view of the city from above, visit Las Setas de Sevilla.
Take a wander into the incredibly large Plaza de Espana, where you can take a boat ride in its canal, observe the impressive tile work or wait around for a daily spontaneous flamenco show.
Sevilla Santa Justa → Cordoba Central | Duration: 0:42 – 1:20 h | Transfers: 0
You start your journey in Seville at the Santa Justa train station and in 42 minutes you are already in Cordoba. Tickets are available from 22€. If you want to travel a little cheaper, there are also trains that travel a little slower and cost only 14€.
Cordoba: The UNESCO World Heritage Site
Hardly any other city combines history and modernity like Córdoba. In addition to the Romans and Arabs, Catholic monarchs have also contributed to the city’s unique diversity.
Here you can walk on a 2000-year-old bridge that was once built by the Romans and the landmark of the city, the Mezquita, is more than worth your time. It was built as a mosque before the Christians built a cathedral in the finished building.
Cordoba Central → Granada | Duration: 1:36 – 2:20 h | Transfers: 0
From the Cordoba train station, take the AVE high-speed train toward Madrid. There are 5 daily connections with a stop in Granada.
Granada: The City At The Foot Of Sierra Nevada
Granada became an important cultural center due to its Catholic, Jewish, and Moorish influence. The Alhambra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the most famous attraction. It’s a fort and castle that can be seen perched on a hill above the city.
There is plenty to do at night, whether it’s enjoying tapas at a reasonable price or visiting the colorful markets.
Granada → Malaga Maria Zambranao | Duration: 1:46 h | Transfers: 1
From Monday to Friday there are two daily connections between Granada and Malaga. On Saturday and Sunday, there is only one connection. You have to change once in Antequera – Santa Ana.
Malaga: The Perfect Combination Of Relaxation And Culture
With sandy beaches and the warm Mediterranean climate, what could be more relaxing? Besides sunbathing, Malaga has much to offer culturally.
There is a little hike up to the Castillo de Gibralfaro which sits above the harbor and provides spectacular views of the city and coastline. Down below, as the birthplace of Pablo Picasso, it’s only fitting to have a large museum in his honor, the Museo Picasso.
And in close proximity are pristine marble alleyways which wind your way to little shopping streets or back alley family restaurants. It’s worth getting a little lost to find the best gems in Malaga.
Malaga Maria Zambrano → Ronda | Duration: 2:02 h | Transfers: 0
Every day at 9:40 there is a direct train from Malaga to Ronda. In about 2 hours you will reach your destination. Alternatively, you can take the bus and the bus ride takes you directly along the coast.
Ronda: The Enthroned City
Ronda, next on our Spain itinerary is a city separated by a deep gorge and only connected by a bridge, the Puente Nuevo. Along the gorge is especially lovely for a walk along the water and in the surrounding area, there are options for hiking and canyoning in Guadalevin.
In the picturesque old town “La Ciudad” you will find the cathedral Santa Maria de Mayor as well as Plaza del Toros, the bullring. Ronda is known to be the home of modern-day bullfighting and at the complex, tours are available daily to learn the history of the nation’s oldest sport.
Ronda → Gibraltar | Duration: 2:28 h | Transfers: 1
By train you go from Ronda to the Estación San Roque, then take the bus to the bus station La Linea. From there it is only a 10 min walk to the border control. Directly after the border, head to Frontier bus stop. Bus lines 5 and 10 can take you to the city of Gibraltar.
Gibraltar: The Rock In The Surf
Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory, where you can eat tapas as well as fish and chips. The Rock of Gibraltar is the notorious landmark, which previously was used as a pivotal military outpost, but now a perfect vantage point of the narrowest strait of the Mediterranean and home to the only wild monkeys in Europe.
There are different ways to reach the top of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, and that is either by walking or taking a 6-minute cable car ride. Worth seeing here are the many stalactite caves in which the last Neanderthals in Europe found their home.
If looking for a good bang for the buck, Gibraltar is considered a tax haven with spirits and cigarettes being sold at very low prices.
Gibraltar → Estación de Cádiz | Duration: 2:30 h | Transfers: 0
From Gibraltar to Cadiz it is best to continue by bus. There are direct bus connections and after 2.5 hours you will arrive in Cadiz.
Cadiz: The Oldest City In Western Europe
The city was already built over 3000 years ago and was thus culturally influenced by many different people. The old town in Cadiz is particularly beautiful since it is completely surrounded by the sea, it can only be reached via a narrow headland.
Sights worth investigating are the cathedral, Gadir archeological site, as well as the Castle of San Sebastian. Being situated on the sea, Cadiz has sandy beaches for the sun worshippers and bountiful seafood restaurants for food lovers. In winter, the carnival is the cultural highlight, which is one of the largest on the Spanish mainland.
Cadiz → Jerez de la Frontera | Duration: 0:33 h | Transfers: 0
Take the regional train from Cadiz station to Jerez de la Frontera. The journey takes about 30 minutes and is reasonably priced. You can buy tickets online on the Renfe (Spanish Railway) website.
Jerez de la Frontera: Wine, Horses, Bulls, and Flamenco
Jerez de la Frontera is especially known for its sherry wine, but also as a destination for car and motorcycle races. On top of that, there is an annual horse festival, Feria del Caballo, and the largest cultural event, the Flamenco Festival. You can also visit other places of interest such as the cathedral and the fortress.
One of the many palaces in the city is the Palacio Duque de Abrantes, where the famous Andalusian horses are bred.
Jerez de la Frontera → Sevilla-Santa Justa | Duration: 0:50 – 1:11 h | Transfers: 0
To get back to Seville, take either the ALVA express train or the MD regional express.