The best motorbike routes for discovering Andalusia
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Do you love winding roads or long highways with endless skies and landscapes? Sea or mountains? Dirt tracks or asphalt?
Andalusia is the ideal place for making the best use of your tyres. Get your gear together and try one of these routes on your motorbike.
Sea of Olive Trees and Culture Route: from Andújar to Úbeda.
This route is perfect for discovering the province of Jaén. You'll visit the most emblematic cities as you pass through fields of olive trees which extend as far as the eye can see.
The route starts in Andújar, a city at the gateway to the Sierra Morena mountains. From here there is a very popular road trip to the Sanctuary of the Virgen de la Cabeza. Take highway A-311 with really nice bends and only a few straight sections, especially in the first part, before passing through the village of Lahiguera.
You take the ring-road around Jaén and then follow the A-316. The road is impeccably paved and has a broad hard shoulder so it is a real pleasure to drive here. The next stop is in Úbeda's twin city: Baeza.
Now is the time to rest and fill up your tank. In the city you should visit the historic old town, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The essential monuments to see are the Cathedral of the Nativity and the Jabalquinto Palace. Apart from fuel, you'll also need to think about your stomach. The Taberna Las Vegas, in the popular Plaza de la Constitución, is a great choice for tapas to recover your energy.
You'll soon reach your destination. Continue along the A-316 until you reach Úbeda. Just as in Baeza, the historic old town is well worth a visit. You really should visit the Plaza Vázquez de Molina and monuments that surround it. There are some impressive restaurants in the Calle Real, specifically the Antique, specialising in cuisine based on olive oil.
The Four Provinces in a Flash Route: Granada, Jaén, Córdoba and Málaga.
How about driving in four provinces in record time? Slow down, you don't need to go so fast. This route takes you around the Sierras Subbéticas Nature Reserve and passes through Granada, Jaén, Cordoba and Málaga.
You start out from the city of Granada. Take the N-432 as far as Alcalá la Real, in Jaén. Turn onto the A-339 and you'll come to Priego de Córdoba, town with a very unusual panorama. Now you climb up to Zuheros, a beautiful white village where a stop is recommended if you have time.
Lots of bends await you here, because the path follows the contours of the nature reserve. Here there are more white villages: Cabra and Lucena. And then you reach the final leg: from Rute to Iznájar, passing by the enormous reservoir.
Costa de la Luz Route: from Lepe to Matalascañas.
A route to enjoy the best of the Huelva coast. From the village of Lepe, climb up towards Moguer by the N-431. Skirt around the city of Huelva on the A-494 to reach Moguer, the birthplace of the poet and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, Juan Ramón Jiménez.
From here in the blink of an eye you'll find yourself in the Doñana Nature Reserve. The pine forests of this incredible nature reserve will welcome you as you cross the long straight that links Mazagón and Matalascañas.
Once on the beach, stop for a rest and start planning to watch the sunset over the waters of the Atlantic which will leave you breathless.
Grazalema route: the last mountains in the south.
Start from the town of Grazalema itself, a town in the midst of the mountains with magnificent views. Take the CA-9104 towards Zahara de la Sierra. The road is narrow so you need to drive carefully, but the bends make this section a lot of fun. The views in the area are incredible.
You will see for yourself that Zahara de la Sierra is an obligatory stop. The town is high up and has extraordinary panoramic views. Following the CA-8102, the roads takes you around the mountains to the north. Then you pass through the white village of El Bosque, and from here you take the A-372 towards Arcos de la Frontera. The route through the white villages of Cádiz continues towards Alcalá de los Gazules.
That just leaves a short stretch along the A-2228. You'll leave the mountains behind little by little until you reach Los Alcornocales Nature Reserve. You'll soon arrive in Vejer de la Frontera, your destination, a white village full of history, Andalusian gastronomy and views of the African coast.