The Subbética de Cordoba is easy to reach, as within an hour from Málaga, yet right in the center of the untouched inland of Andalucía.
It is just an hour by car to both Córdoba and Granada.
The scenery is beautiful and the views are stunning. It has endless olive groves and Las Sierras Subbéticas, an extensive (31.000 hectares!) Natural Park of rugged limestone mountains. It has the highest peak of all of Córdoba, La Tinosa, with a height of 1.570m.
You can enjoy idyllic walks here.
There are as many as 9 official walks, including a part of the GR7, the walk that crosses Europe. The “Via Verde de Subbética’ is worth mentioning. A wonderful trip of no less than 58 km, from the border with the province of Jaén to Las Navas del Selpillar, a small Andalusian village. This route once was a railroad; it is a beautiful route with varied views, it passes through the Sierra Subbética and along la Laguna del Salobral, where you can see many exotic birds. You are traveling through nice white villages as Luque, Zuheros, Dona Mencia and Cabra.
This route is also perfect as a bike ride.
Apart from the endless olive groves the Sierra Subbética also offers extensive oak forests, with holm and cork oak. Especially during spring you will be surprised by the incredible abundance and variety of wild flowers. You will see lots of bird of prey, like eagles, a special species of vultures, and peregrine falcons. The peregrine falcons are the symbol of the Sierra Subbética. The area still has wild cats, wild boar, mongoose and badger.
De Subbética is situated amidst the cultural remains of Al-Andaluz.
The region is steeped with history, and there are numerous remains of ancient civilizations in the area. The Subbética counts more than 300 archeological sites. It has musea, castles, churches and lot of other fascinating monuments, more than enough for everyone who is interested in the history of this intriguing area.
You could easily visit the Mezquita in Córdoba and the Alhambra in Granada.
For seven centuries Córdoba was the “center of the world” in the period of the Great Moorish Empire. Granada has been the center of Moorish culture for many centuries. The Mezquita de Cordoba is alongside with the Alhambra de Granada, the finest example of Moorish art in the whole of the western world. It is the grandest mosque, and one of the most amazing buildings in the world. Scattered throughout the region are many charming whitewashed villages, each of them has preserved it own Moorish remains.
The whitewashed village of Iznájar has some interesting sights, like a Moorish castle dating from the 8th Century and church from the 16th Century. From Iznájar you have spectacular views over the Embalse de Iznájar. It is great for swimming and water sports.
It has a lovely sandy beach, called Valdearenas Playa.
There are plenty of delightful white villages, a nice example is the town of Rute. It offers lovely squares and little parks, a ruined Moorish castle, and lots of small shops, bars and restaurants. There is a fresh market every Saturday. Rute has a long tradition in producing Anís, a tipical Anis drink, and is also famous for its jamón (Iberic ham), and lots of sweet delicacies (like for example Turrón, a delicious treat for Christmas).
If you are looking for authenticity, this is the place to go.
The locals are extremely friendly, as they have not yet been washed away by crowds of tourists. The yearly fiestas, like the Semana Santa (Pasen) and Cruces de Mayo in May, are really worthwile.
Here you will still find a tradition of old fashioned craftmanship. Many are still involved in woodcarving or bronze, weaving baskets and mats from esparto grass, or make a living with pottery or embroidery.
Plenty of interesting things to take home as a souvenir –
and don’t forget the famous olive oil of course!