NEW YORK -- Although the Andalucia region of Spain is best known
for its big cities --such as Granada, Cordoba and Seville -- the
rural areas also offer a wide range of attractions, particularly
for outdoor enthusiasts.
Areas suitable for cycling, trekking, horseback riding and
fishing abound, and many are located surprisingly near the popular
In Cordoba, for example, cyclists can ride near Hornachuelos
along the shores of the Bembezar River. Sharp-eyed travelers can
spot several species of unusual flora and fauna along the route,
which encompasses a nature park.
Several cycling trails in the Granada area incorporate routes
through the Sierra Nevada Nature park.
Other cycling suggestions include the western Sierra Morena
region, which features mountainous terrain and sharp grades, as
well as the pilgrimage routes along the Huelva Plain.
Hiking trails are plentiful in the Cabo de Gata-Nigar Nature
Park in the province of Almeria as well as in the Sierra de
Maria-Los Velez Nature Park.
Wetlands enthusiasts might want to try a hiking route along the
Adra Lagoons in the Almeria region, where waterfowl live among the
Donana National Park, a protected area of Arroyo de la Rocina,
also abounds in wildlife. This itinerary is especially suited to
bird-watchers, who can catch glimpses of a number of aquatic
For a more strenuous climb, the Pico de la Sagra, or Sacred
Peak, can be reached in about six hours from Puebla de Don Fadrique
in the Granada area.
For a change of pace, forest walks are available near Malaga, in
the Sierra de las Nieves Nature Park. The area boasts Spanish fir
trees and other high-elevation vegetation.
Horseback riding also is popular in the Andalucia region. Near
Seville, riders can see the sights in the Donana National Park, the
Aljaraque Hills and the El Rocio area, for example.
Equestrians also can ride what is known as the Bull Route in the
Cadiz area, where wild bulls roam in large number.
Riding enthusiasts can visit the Royal Andalusian School of
Equestrian Art in Jerez de la Frontera, also in Cadiz. There
visitors can observe the performing horses in training.
Beach lovers can ride along the coast in the Malaga region or
take part in the annual international equestrian fair in
Fuengirola, set for early October.
Tourist Office of Spain
Telephone: (212) 265-8822 in New York
(213) 658-7188 in California
(312) 642-1992 in Chicago
(305) 358-1992 in Miami