The most unique places to visit in Spain include Moorish architecture, picturesque towns, stunning coasts, intriguing castles and much more. The country effortlessly weaves together its rich history, vibrant culture, and diverse landscapes. As you embark on a journey through this enchanting land, prepare to discover some of the most unique and captivating destinations that Spain has to offer. From the sun-kissed beaches of the Mediterranean to the majestic peaks of the Los Picos, Spain is a treasure trove of extraordinary experiences that will leave you awe-struck and inspired.
The 10 most unique places to visit in Spain
#1 Balearic Islands
The Balearic Islands, nestled in the glistening Mediterranean Sea, unquestionably rank among the most unique places to visit in Spain. Nestled in the azure waters of the Mediterranean Sea, this archipelago comprises four breathtaking islands – Majorca, Menorca, Ibiza, and Formentera. Each island boasts its own distinctive charm, making the Balearics a must-visit destination for travelers to Spain.
Starting with Majorca, the largest of the Balearic Islands, visitors are treated to a combination of pristine beaches, rugged mountains, and enchanting medieval villages. Palma de Mallorca, the capital city, beckons with its imposing Gothic cathedral, historic Almudaina Palace, and vibrant old town, perfect for leisurely strolls. Nature enthusiasts can explore the rugged Tramuntana mountain range, a UNESCO World Heritage site, offering unparalleled hiking opportunities and stunning panoramas.
Menorca, in contrast, captivates with its unspoiled landscapes and tranquil ambiance. As a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the island boasts an abundance of diverse ecosystems, from secluded beaches like Cala Macarella to lush wetlands like Parc Natural S’Albufera d’es Grau. Its charming fishing villages, such as Binibeca and Fornells, present a chance to savor authentic Mediterranean cuisine amidst a relaxed atmosphere.
Ibiza, renowned for its vibrant nightlife, beckons party-goers and sun-seekers alike. Yet, beyond the electric nightlife scene, Ibiza conceals an intriguing cultural heritage. The ancient Phoenician settlement of Sa Caleta and the majestic Dalt Vila, a fortified old town, showcase its rich history. Moreover, quieter spots like Es Vedrà, a mystical rocky island, offer opportunities for awe-inspiring sunsets.
Lastly, Formentera, the smallest and least developed island, invites travelers to unwind in its paradisiacal setting. Pristine white-sand beaches like Playa de Ses Illetes and turquoise waters invite leisurely swims and water sports. Exploring the island by bike is a popular activity, allowing visitors to discover its untouched beauty while embracing a slow-paced, eco-friendly approach.
#2 San Sebastian
San Sebastian, also known as Donostia by the locals, is a hidden gem nestled on the Spanish west coast. Its breathtaking location, with pristine white sandy beaches right in the heart of the city, combined with its historical landmarks and exceptional local cuisine, sets it apart from any other place in Spain.
The Old Town of San Sebastian, or Parte Vieja, is the most beautiful part of the city, characterized by narrow streets with tall buildings and wide avenues adorned with grand monuments. Strolling through its charming parks, colonnades, kitschy sculptures, monumental bridges, and alongside the Urumea River, which flows into the sea, is a delightful experience. Notable landmarks to include in your route are the city gate on Portu Kalea street, the underground market Mercado de la Bretxa, Gipuzkoa Plaza city park with its bridges and water features, the modern Kursaal congress center, the riverside of Urumea River, and the picturesque María Cristina Bridge with its gold-white statues.
What makes San Sebastian truly unique is its beautiful city beaches: Playa de Ondaretta, Playa La Concha, and Playa Zurriola, all situated right next to the historic center. The city’s idyllic location on the La Concha Bay allows visitors to bask in the sun during the summer and enjoy the breathtaking promenade all year round. Walking along the promenade from one end to the other provides stunning views of the bay and the city’s landscape.
For panoramic views, visitors can take the cable car to Monte Igueldo, where a 180-meter-high viewpoint awaits. Alternatively, a bit of a hike up Monte Urgull will reveal a large Jesus statue that overlooks the city, making it a significant landmark.
San Sebastian’s culinary scene is another aspect that sets it apart. Known for its local Basque cuisine, the city is famous for its pintxos: tapas on bread served with a skewer. The Old Town is brimming with pintxos bars, where you can indulge in a variety of flavors.
As one of the most famous and most visited destinations in Spain, Barcelona isn’t exactly a hidden gem. This extraordinary city is one of the most unique places in the world because of its rich history, remarkable architecture, and lively culture. From admiring Gaudí’s architectural wonders to indulging in the city’s culinary delights, exploring the Gothic Quarter, lazing on the beaches, and immersing in its spirited festivals, Barcelona guarantees an unforgettable experience.
Barcelona’s allure lies in its distinctive blend of old-world charm and modernity. One of the city’s most iconic landmarks is the awe-inspiring Sagrada Família, designed by the architectural genius Antoni Gaudí. This towering basilica’s intricate façade and surreal interior are almost unreal. Similarly, Park Güell, another Gaudí masterpiece, boasts fantastical mosaics and curvaceous sculptures set against breathtaking views of the city.
Beyond its architectural wonders, Barcelona also boasts a dynamic cultural scene. The Gothic Quarter, or Barri Gòtic, is a labyrinth of narrow streets adorned with historic buildings and charming squares. Exploring this area offers a glimpse into Barcelona’s medieval past and its vibrant present, as it is brimming with boutiques, cafes, and street performers.
The beachfront of Barcelona, with its golden sands and turquoise waters, provides an excellent opportunity to unwind and soak up the Mediterranean sun. The seaside promenade of La Barceloneta offers a laid-back atmosphere, where visitors can indulge in beachside dining and water sports.
For sports enthusiasts, a trip to the famous Camp Nou is a must. This colossal stadium houses the world-class team FC Barcelona. Witnessing a live football match here is a bucketlist experience, and even those not deeply invested in sports will appreciate the fervent passion of the fans.
Maximize your Barcelona experience by incorporating day trips in Catalonia, a stunning destination in Spain. Don’t miss out on exploring the wine regions and indulging in visits to top-notch wineries.
#4 Costa Brava
Discover the alluring charm of the Costa Brava, a hidden gem nestled in Spain’s northern region, where beauty and culture blend seamlessly. Stretching along 200 kilometers of magnificent coastline adorned with sandy beaches, this Mediterranean paradise promises an unforgettable vacation filled with sun, sea, and sand. However, the Costa Brava offers so much more than just a beach holiday. It’s a haven for cultural enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.
Venture to the vibrant city of Girona, located 100 kilometers north of bustling Barcelona. Its picturesque setting along the Onyar River, with bridges and colorful houses hanging over the water, makes for a breathtaking sight. Don’t miss the Eiffel Bridge, an iconic landmark designed by Gustave Eiffel, the mastermind behind the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Girona’s old town takes you back in time with its narrow medieval streets, city walls, cozy restaurants, and lively squares. The Girona Cathedral, perched atop one of the highest points, dominates the skyline, while the city walls offer an enchanting walk along the Passeig de la Muralla, providing stunning views of the city.
The Costa Brava is also home to charming historical towns that exude medieval charm. Pals, Tossa de Mar, and Begur boast cobblestone streets and centuries-old houses, offering a glimpse into the past. Pals’ inland medieval center is adorned with charming ceramics shops, while Tossa de Mar’s hilltop castle ruins provide sweeping views of the sea and the town. Begur stands out for its stunning beaches and unique colonial-style houses, known as Casas de Indianos, while its old castle offers a fantastic viewpoint over the Costa Brava and the nearby Medes Islands.
As you explore the Costa Brava’s rugged and picturesque coastline, you’ll encounter idyllic coves and expansive sandy beaches, both in popular tourist spots like Lloret de Mar and in lesser-known areas. Seek out spots like Cala s’Alguer near Palamós, Cala Pola near Tossa de Mar, and Platja de Sant Fransesc near Blanes for a tranquil beach experience.
For a touch of artistry, visit Figueres, home to the Museo Dalí, a surrealistic wonderland dedicated to Salvador Dalí’s masterpieces. The museum, located in what was once a theater, houses an extensive collection of the artist’s works and is a surreal masterpiece itself, with its pink exterior, golden accents, and distinctive architectural elements.
#5 The Mezquita in Cordoba
One of the most unique attractions of Spain is the Mezquita in Córdoba. This iconic monument has served as both a mosque and later a cathedral for over 1300 years, boasting phenomenal architecture that has captivated visitors from around the world. The mesmerizing photos of the forest of columns within this mosque-cathedral are no exaggeration, and it’s no wonder why the site holds a prestigious place on the UNESCO World Heritage List. A visit to Córdoba is incomplete without stepping foot inside the awe-inspiring Mezquita.
The history of the Mezquita is deeply intertwined with the city’s religious past. It all began with a Christian church being converted half of the church into a mosque. The construction and expansion of the mosque involved the use of hundreds of marble columns sourced from ancient Roman villas in the surrounding region. These columns, though magnificent, were not long enough to support the grand scale of the project, so they were cleverly extended with distinctive red and white arches. In 1236, when the Christians reclaimed southern Spain, including Córdoba, the mosque was converted into a church. To preserve the breathtaking architecture while creating a cathedral, a church was built within the heart of the mosque.
Today, the building stands as a cathedral but is still often referred to as the Mezquita, which means mosque in Spanish. Its official name is Mezquita-Catedral de Córdoba. Stepping into the Mezquita is a sight to behold. The famous red and white columns stretch as far as the eye can see, though their number has diminished due to the cathedral’s construction. Christian chapels line the edges of the mosque, but the true surprise lies at its heart: a cathedral nestled within the forest of columns, making the Mezquita a remarkable and popular attraction.
Make sure to explore the Moorish Capilla de Villaviciosa and Mirhab, as they showcase some of the finest elements of the ancient mosque. The Villaviciosa chapel, added in 848, was once the heart of the mosque but is no longer due to subsequent expansions. The Mirhab, one of the most beautifully decorated parts of the Mezquita, stands out for its non-standard orientation, deviating from the usual direction towards Mecca. Finally, before concluding your visit, climb the 54-meter tall bell tower, once the mosque’s minaret.
#6 El Rocío and Doñana National Park
Discover the most unusual places in Spain with a visit to the picturesque town of El Rocio. While it’s renowned for its lively pilgrimage festivities during Pentecost, the town holds a unique charm that can be appreciated year-round. Step into a real-life western movie set, where white houses, dusty dirt roads, and locals on horseback create an authentic Wild West atmosphere. Experience a captivating time machine that transports you to the days of cowboys and pioneers.
El Rocio’s design revolves around horses and horse-drawn carriages, a reminder of its past heritage. Although these majestic creatures are now mainly used for tourists, the town’s history is evident in the wooden beams adorning the houses, once used for tying up horses. Explore the large squares with grassy fields, where horses once roamed freely, leaving behind a fascinating glimpse of the past.
El Rocío is located in the beautiful Doñana National Park, a sprawling wetland area with unique flora and fauna. Keep an eye out for flamingos and deer, which are often spotted within the park’s expansive grounds. With a bit of luck, you might even catch a glimpse of the elusive lynx, though they are a rare sight to behold.
Immerse yourself in the park’s natural beauty by embarking on breathtaking hikes. Discover the wonders of the Camino de Moguer, an enchanting trail that unveils a stunning part of the park’s allure. Alternatively, explore the variety of scenic hiking routes starting from any of the three visitor centers. From leisurely strolls to more challenging treks, you’ll find the perfect hike to suit your preference, ranging from just over 2 kilometers to 7 kilometers in length.
#7 Caminito del Rey
One of the most unique hikes to do in Spain is the Caminito del Rey – the King’s Path – in the heart of Andalusia. It is a breathtaking mountain trail spanning 7.5 kilometers and offering awe-inspiring views along steep cliffs. It is suitable for adventurers of all ages and fitness levels.
Over a century old, the Caminito del Rey was initially constructed to connect two hydroelectric power stations. Unfortunately, as time passed, the path fell into disrepair, deteriorating precariously along the cliff edges. At one point, it became one of the most dangerous hikes in the world. Despite being officially off-limits, it drew daredevils seeking adventure, tragically leading to fatalities. Fortunately, the trail has undergone extensive restoration and is now entirely safe for visitors.
Since its reopening to the public in 2015, the Caminito has become one of Andalusia’s most popular and thrilling attractions. Although the walk still takes you along sheer cliffs, the path has been widened, and safety barriers have been installed throughout. For added excitement, you’ll encounter sections with transparent glass plates beneath your feet, allowing you to marvel at the dizzying depths below. Additionally, the last stretch features an old bridge, reminiscent of the more daring times.
Ensure you book your tickets well in advance through the official website, as the number of visitors allowed at any given time is limited, and it can fill up quickly, especially during the peak season. Expect the high season to be busy, making it challenging to find parking for your rental car at the starting point, particularly in the middle of the day.
The trail operates as a one-way route, leading you to the end of the gorge. From there, shuttle buses await to transport you back to the starting point, where you parked your rental car. Alternatively, if you’re up for it, you can opt to walk the 2-kilometer return journey on your own.
#8 El Torcal de Antequera
Less than an hour north of Málaga is one of the most beautiful pieces of nature in Andalusia. The Natural Park El Torcal de Antequera combines beautiful mountains with special rock formations. You can enjoy beautiful walks and several hiking routes have been set out through the park.
The unique limestone formations make El Torcal a special mountain area. You can simply visit the two viewpoints – they are also accessible for wheelchairs and prams – near the visitor center. But we recommend you to make one of the three hikes in the park. The green route is 1.5 kilometers long, the yellow route is 3 kilometers and the orange route is 3.6 kilometers. The orange one is a linear route, so you will have to walk back the same distance.
We would recommend the yellow route which took us about 2 hours though the route is only 3 kilometers. The short hike involves a lot of scrambling over rocks and passing narrow gorges, though we wouldn’t say this hike is hard. We probably mainly took this long because of the many stops to take in the beautiful views and observe the Spanish ibex from up close. This short hike is definitely one of the highlights of Andalusia and we highly recommend it for a day trip from Málaga.
One of the most unique places to visit in Spain is Júzcar, the captivating Smurf village nestled in the heart of Andalusia, Spain. Once a typical white-washed pueblo blanco, this village underwent a remarkable transformation in 2011 when it served as the backdrop for a Smurf movie. Every inch of Júzcar was painted in shades of blue, from the quaint houses to the charming streets and even the flower pots. The Smurf magic took hold, and Júzcar found itself propelled into the spotlight as one of Spain’s most extraordinary tourist attractions.
What started as a temporary movie set soon evolved into something more profound. The villagers, initially expecting to revert to their white walls after the filming, had a change of heart. The allure of the blue hue grew on them, and they embraced the newfound fame and the influx of curious visitors. Júzcar earned its reputation as both ‘the blue village of Andalusia‘ and ‘the Smurf village in Spain,’ solidifying its status as a captivating destination for travelers from all over the world.
While the smurf images that once dotted the village have mostly disappeared, the enchanting blue ambiance remains intact, perpetuating Júzcar’s fame as the blue Smurf village. Strolling through the cobalt-colored streets is a surreal experience, where every building is a canvas of captivating blue shades. Though the smurf images have faded, the village compensated with delightful murals that enhance the allure of this unique setting.
Nestled amidst the stunning mountains of Andalusia, the captivating village of Frigiliana stands out as one of Spain’s most enchanting gems. This whitewashed village is renowned for its pristine beauty and picturesque setting. Surprisingly close to the bustling beaches of the Costa del Sol, yet worlds away in atmosphere, Frigiliana offers a unique blend of serenity and charm that create a unique experience.
Wandering through Frigiliana’s narrow streets, you’ll be spellbound by the charming facades of whitewashed buildings adorned with potted plants and vibrant blue doors. It’s no wonder the village has earned the title of the most beautiful in Spain, drawing many visitors. But what sets Frigiliana apart from other white villages in Andalusia is its stunning mountain environment. Nestled within the Sierras of Tejeda, Almijara, and Alhama Natural Park, the village rewards visitors with awe-inspiring panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. For nature enthusiasts, Frigiliana offers many opportunities for scenic hikes, leading to hidden treasures like the secluded village of Acebuchal or the hilltop vantage point that offers the most captivating views of the entire village.
Steeped in history, Frigiliana proudly embraces its Moorish roots, reminiscent of a time when the Moors exerted their influence throughout southern Spain. Within the old Moorish city, known as Barribarto, echoes of the past come to life through beautiful architecture, though less extravagant than renowned sites like the Alhambra in Granada. This historic center is what has earned Frigiliana its well-deserved status as a national heritage of Spain, captivating visitors with its photogenic charm and idyllic street scenes.
Adding to its cultural tapestry, Frigiliana boasts influences from Christian and Jewish-Sephardic traditions. The village takes pride in its rich heritage, often referred to as the village of the three cultures. In August, the renowned Three Culture Festival takes center stage, inviting visitors to partake in four days of festivities, markets, and concerts. However, those seeking a quieter and more intimate experience of Frigiliana’s essence are advised to avoid the festival’s bustling crowds, allowing them to savor the village’s authentic village atmosphere undisturbed.
#11 Metropol Parasol in Sevilla
In the heart of Seville, a city adorned with historical wonders, stands the Metropol Parasol, an architectural gem that surprises all visitors. It holds the title of the largest wooden construction in the world, spanning the entire square with its impressive dimensions. The mesmerizing design comprises six interconnected umbrellas. It is affectionately known as the “Setas de Sevilla” or the mushrooms of Seville, by the locals.
The origin of the Metropol Parasol is a fascinating tale of rediscovery. Initially, the site was intended for a parking garage, but during construction, significant remnants from both Roman and Moorish eras were unearthed, leading to the suspension of the project. It was only after many years that a new attempt to revamp the square was made. This resulted in a design contest that birthed the awe-inspiring wooden creation that graces Seville’s skyline today. In 2011, the Metropol Parasol was completed, swiftly solidifying its place as one of Seville’s most unique tourist attractions.
Visiting the Metropol Parasol provides a unique experience. Simply strolling on the elevated square beneath the mesmerizing umbrellas provides a captivating view of the architectural masterpiece. However, for a more immersive encounter with the Parasol, visitors have the opportunity to ascend to its summit. Descend into the cellar, where the remnants of the Roman and Moorish excavations can also be observed, and secure a ticket for the walk atop this extraordinary structure. A walking path leads you over the umbrella-shaped canopy, granting a stunning panorama of both the artwork itself and the charming cityscape.
The Metropol Parasol is a testament to modern ingenuity harmoniously blended with Seville’s history. Its innovative design and fascinating history make it one of the most unique attractions in Spain.
#12 Setenil de las Bodegas
Setenil de las Bodegas is often hailed as one of the most beautiful villages in Andalusia and all of Spain. It offers a unique experience unlike any other ‘pueblo blanco’ in the region. Among the iconic ‘pueblos blancos’ scattered across Andalusia, Setenil de las Bodegas stands apart, offering a one-of-a-kind experience. Renowned white villages like Ronda, Zahara de la Sierra, and Grazalema dot the southern Spanish landscape, presenting travelers with a tough choice when deciding which to visit. However, we strongly recommend adding Setenil de las Bodegas to your list, as its distinctive charm sets it apart from its counterparts.
While other charming white villages grace hilltops and mountains, Setenil found its haven within a gorge, nestled amidst the rocks. The town was constructed ingeniously hidden within the rocks. This choice of location not only provided a natural defense but also a way to beat the scorching summer temperatures prevalent in the south of Spain. The cool spaces under and against the rocks, initially used for storing food, proved to be a welcome respite during the hottest months. In fact, the name ‘bodegas,’ which means (wine) cellars in Spanish, pays homage to these cool storage spaces. Eventually, the resourceful villagers built their homes against the rock walls and sought shelter under overhanging rocks to escape the summer heat.
Today, Setenil de las Bodegas is renowned for its extraordinary rock houses and has become a unique attraction in Andalusia. Its fascinating streets wind up against the rock faces, with houses seamlessly integrated into the natural formations. As you stroll through the winding streets of the old town, the picturesque white village with its houses integrated into the rock formations paints a captivating sight. Even on grey, rainy days, Setenil exudes an undeniable charm that leaves visitors in awe. For those seeking a unique and unforgettable experience in Andalusia, Setenil de las Bodegas promises an enchanting journey back in time, where history and nature converge in an architectural marvel.
#13 Los Picos de Europa
Nestled in the northern region of Spain, Los Picos de Europa, or the Peaks of Europe, stand as a testament to the country’s diverse and awe-inspiring landscapes. The National Park Los Picos de Europa may not boast the highest mountains in Europe, but it is undoubtedly one of the most stunning mountainous regions on our continent. This majestic mountain range, located in the provinces of Asturias, Cantabria, and Castile and Leon, offers a unique and unparalleled experience for adventurous travelers seeking an escape from the bustling cities and popular tourist destinations.
Los Picos de Europa is renowned for its striking beauty and rugged charm. Its snow-capped peaks, deep gorges, and lush green valleys create a picture-perfect scene that seems straight out of a fairy tale. With an extensive network of well-marked trails, hikers and nature enthusiasts can revel in its pristine wilderness, venturing through ancient forests and glacial lakes, and catching glimpses of the diverse wildlife that calls this region home.
Our favorite hike in Los Picos is the hike from the cable car in Fuente Dé. The easiest way to reach the highest peaks of the national park is by taking the cable car at Fuente Dé. Instead of buying a round-trip ticket, opt for a one-way journey and embark on the most beautiful day hike in Los Picos! For those seeking a long but doable day hike with the chance to witness the highest summits without climbing too many altitude meters, the trail from Fuente Dé is the perfect choice. Ascending with the cable car, you’ll find yourself surrounded by the most breathtaking mountain peaks and spectacular vistas right from the start. The hike itself leads you through a stunning landscape, showcasing the very best of Los Picos de Europa – from the towering mountain summits to the picturesque valleys, and everything in between.
#8 The Castillo Monumento Colomares
Explore a fairytale-like castle with a touch of whimsy on Spain’s stunning Costa del Sol, just a stone’s throw away from Málaga. This intriguing attraction is for sure one of the most unique places to visit in Spain, as it is far from your typical castle experience. The Castillo Monumento Colomares is a fantastical monument that pays tribute to the renowned explorer, Columbus.
Erected between 1987 and 1994 by an eccentric individual, this unique building weaves a fascinating tapestry of Columbus and his voyage to America. The castle showcases an array of architectural styles, boasting features like stained glass windows, a pagoda, the bow of a ship, fairytale towers, and Gothic embellishments. It’s an enchanting blend of history and imagination that captivates visitors from all walks of life.
The entry fee is only €2.50, making it an accessible attraction for travelers of any budget. While the castle isn’t particularly expansive and isn’t open for interior exploration, a brief visit allows you to bask in its one-of-a-kind charm. You can reach this extraordinary site in under half an hour’s drive from Málaga.
#14 Albaicin in Granada
Nestled in the heart of the city, one of the most unique experiences in Granada you can have is strolling through the old district of Albaicin. This hilltop neighborhood boasts a rich history, dating back even further than the renowned Alhambra, making it a must-visit destination. With its cobbled, winding streets adorned with colorful flora, it’s no wonder Albaicin has earned its rightful place on UNESCO’s World Heritage list.
As you meander through the picturesque alleyways, you’ll come across a surprising abundance of charming fountains. Don’t hesitate to fill your water bottle here, as the water comes from the nearby mountains and is refreshingly potable. Interestingly, many of these fountains are found adjacent to churches. It is a reminder that in the time of the Moors, these places of worship were once mosques, and the fountains were used by the Muslim population for pre-prayer ablutions.
Take a well-deserved break after climbing the steep streets by relaxing in one of the cozy parks or quaint squares. Settle on a bench, and take in the sights of passersby going about their day. If you’re looking to savor some traditional Spanish flavors, head over to Boabdil Restaurante, a local gem known for its delectable offerings. For a taste of Moorish influence, seek out the enchanting tea house, Kasbah, located on Calle Calderia Nueva.
Albaicin’s allure goes beyond its historic charm and pleasant spots to unwind. The breathtaking panoramic views of the Alhambra Palace, set against the backdrop of the majestic Sierra Nevada mountains, make this neighborhood truly special. Whether you visit during the day to appreciate the sun’s rays dancing on the ancient walls, or in the evening when the golden lights of the Alhambra create a mesmerizing atmosphere, Albaicin promises an unforgettable experience.
Moreover, this vibrant quarter of Granada comes alive with the echoes of street musicians and the laughter of children at play. The air is filled with a sense of authenticity, preserving the essence of its Moorish past, making Albaicin an unparalleled destination in Spain.
#15 The Via Verde de la Sierra
One of the most unique places to visit in Spain is the Via Verde de la Sierra. Spain’s Via Verdes, or ‘Green Roads’, are abandoned railway tracks that have been transformed into enchanting walking and cycling paths. Just a stone’s throw away from Málaga, you’ll find the extraordinary Via Verde de la Sierra, a true gem amidst the picturesque landscapes.
Unlike the hilly terrains commonly found in this region of Spain, the Via Verde de la Sierra offers a predominantly flat cycling experience. Ingenious engineers designed a smooth railway path, complete with a network of tunnels and viaducts, although no train has ever traversed these tracks. Spanning 37 kilometers, the route gracefully connects the old Puerto Serrano and Olvera stations, with the charming Coripe station nestled midway. Each station offers convenient amenities such as (electric) bike rentals, ample parking, and inviting restaurants. As you embark on this journey, the serene absence of villages or towns along the route allows you to immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring beauty of the mountains.
A cycling highlight on this adventure is the series of mountain tunnels that dot the path. Traverse through numerous tunnels, some brilliantly illuminated upon entry. While some tunnels stretch as far as the eye can see, others are short yet captivating. Notably, the longest tunnel along the Via Verde de la Sierra stretches an impressive kilometer!
While the rental bicycles must be returned to the station of origin, don’t let that deter you from this remarkable experience. You can ride only half of the Via Verde, leading up to the Coripe station. This idyllic spot offers a fantastic break with a vast picnic area and the Chaparro de la Vega, a majestic 700-year-old oak. Moreover, it serves as an ideal wild camping spot for people travelling by motorhome or campervan. This specific stretch also gives you the opportunity to witness some of the largest viaducts and tunnels, making it a must-visit destination along the route.