If you love nature and long for new hiking routes, take a look at the Vias Verdes in Cordoba.
The province of Cordoba welcomes two of the most appealing Vias Verdes of Andalucia. These used to be regional railways until the 1960s, when the Spanish government started to close them, in favour of new infrastructural works. It was only in the ‘90s when people began to reevaluate these railways, and new hiking routes were created in their place.
Spain owns more than 100 Vias Verdes (literally, “green ways”), 27 of which in Andalucia. Through them, you can discover the history of the region, fill your eyes with the spectacular views from the many viewpoints, and enjoy a day out with your family and friends. In fact, the majority of the Vias Verdes are easy to walk, as they are even adapted for wheelchairs.
In particular, the province of Cordoba provides its visitors with two greenways: the “Via Verde de la Subbética” and the “Via Verde De La Campiña”.
Let’s take a look at the two of them.
Via Verde del Aceite
- Departure: Bridge of the River Guadajoz
- Arrival: Camporreal Train Station
- Length: 128 km
This 128 km-long greenway meanders through the provinces of Jaen and Cordoba, thus being Andalucia’s longest greenway. 62 km of it winds in the southern part of Cordoba province, in the Subbética region. The whole Via Verde del Aceite follows the trail of the old Olive Train.
It touches truly spectacular landscapes, such as the Sierras Subbéticas Natural Park and the Natural Reservoir of the Salobral Lagoon. It has twelve leisure areas, where you will be able to relax during your route. Some, like those in Navas del Selpillar, Lucena and Cabra, are also equipped with child-friendly areas.
The starting point is the river Guadajoz bridge, which serves as the border between the provinces of Cordoba and Jaen. The nearby area of Collado de las Arcas welcomes a halt and gives the start to a series of viewpoints over the magic salt-water Natural Reservoir of the Salobral Lagoon. This paradise is a must-see, especially in spring, where plants come back to life and migrating bird species get to the lake.
Following the route, you will come across the old Luque station, which is now a restaurant. If you fancy a detour, visit the 7-km-north town of Baena, where you will taste one of the best olive oils ever.
The next stop is the mesmerising town of Zuheros, whose viewpoints and Moorish castle are worth the steep deviation. Don’t miss the Cueva de Los Murciélagos (literally, the Bat Cave), which was declared Natural Monument, and the famous curved iron bridge, a few metres far from Zuheros halt. Another train station-converted-into-restaurant is located in the next town, Doña Mencía.
The first and only tunnel of the Via Verde de la Subbética is the next stop of the route. The 140 mt-long Túnel del Plantío leads to one of the route’s most spectacular viaducts: the 132 mt-long Viaducto de la Sima.
The next town is Cabra, whose station has been converted into the Visitor’s Centre of Tren del Aceite, where you will find information about the Via Verde de la Subbética and the region of La Subbética.
After going through some relaxing vineyards, the next stop is the town of Lucena, where the Tourism and Leisure Centre is located. And if you love wine, don’t miss out on the Centro Enogastronómico de la Ruta del Vino Montilla-Moriles, in the Cordovan town of Las Navas de Selpillar. Here, you will have the possibility to taste the delicious wine of the region and to receive all the information you have always wanted to know about it.
The last stop of the Via Verde de la Subbética is the train station of Camporreal, 4 km far from the town of Puente Genil.
How to get to the Via Verde del Aceite (Cordovan part):
You can either reach various points of the route by car or by bus. If you want to use your vehicle, check this list of all the accesses. If you’d rather go by bus, the Autobús Empresa Carrera SL helps link Cordoba with all the towns of the route.
Via Verde de la Campiña
- Departure: Valchillón Train Station
- Arrival: La Carlota
- Length: 28 km
The first 28 km of the Via Verde de la Campiña twist and turn entirely in the province of Cordoba, from the capital city to the town of La Carlota. The second part follows up to the Sevillan town of Marchena. Just like all the Spanish greenways, the Via Verde de la Campiña was previously a railway, which winds through the countryside of the Cordovan province and the Guadalquivir valley.
The starting point is the Valchillón station, whose silo you can reach by flanking the Guadalquivir river from the southwestern part of Cordoba. The first section of the route is steep, and it ends in the Las Tablas tunnel, which it is advisable to avoid if it has been raining a lot. This tunnel leads to the Las Tablas halt, then bordering fields and streams.
While walking (or cycling), don’t miss out on the views of Sierra Morena and architectural masterpieces, such as the Almodovar Castle, a Moorish fortress on the top of a 250 mt-high hill in the town of Almodóvar del Río. Likewise, the village of Guadalcázar is worth a visit, especially thanks to the archaeological sites and the perfectly-maintained monuments, among which the Castle and the Church of Our Lady of Grace stand out.
Next step is the pine-tree El Hecho Park and the Las Pinedas halt. The last point of the Via Verde de la Campiña is the town of La Carlota, which has been declared Bien de Interés Cultural (Cultural Interest Good).
How to get to the Via Verde de la Campiña:
You can access the greenway by car through various accesses, which you can take a look at here.
Other Vias Verdes in Cordoba
The province of Cordoba also relies on three shorter greenways.
- The first one is the Via Verde de la Maquinilla, which connects the San Antonio mine in Belmez with the Industrial Area of Peñarroya-Pueblonuevo, in the western part of the Cordoban province. It’s 8 km long, and it is the ideal route if you love the industrial architecture.
- Located in the same area, you will find the three-km-long Via Verde Peñarroya-Pueblonuevo, which connects the two towns. You will pass near some ancient buildings, such as the Mine Hospital, the French School, and the magnificent building that belonged to the Sociedad Minero Metalúrgica de Peñarroya. This Via Verde is an easy route to do, even with children.
- Lastly, the 14 km-long Via Verde de la Minería is a part of the old railway that used to connect the towns of Puertollano and Peñarroya. It starts from the old train station of El Soldado, and it ends in the magnificent landscapes of Sierra Morena.
Places to stay in Cordoba
The greenways of Cordoba are worth a visit. So are the holiday homes and villas in the Cordovan province. Many of them are equipped with modern-day facilities, which will help you relax after a long walk through the Vias Verdes. Fancy one? Just click on the button below.
The Vias Verdes in Cordoba are the ideal routes to enjoy the countryside of the province.
Have you made up your mind about your next route? Which is your favourite? Tell us in the comments!