Sunday, 10 September 2017

Andalucia on the road: 13 days, 1000 km, 2 (vintage) wheels

if you dream about visit Andalucia someday, if you are planning a trip to Andalucia, if you are just curious about our road trip in Andalucia by lambretta, in this post I'm sharing our day by day itinerary on the road for a 2 weeks long trip, with some personal notes, tips and the usual illustrated map, of course.
Andalucia on the road, illustrated map

before getting on to more practical things, let me say something on how much I'm fond of the memories collected on this trip.

what a wonderful, colorful, tasteful land Andalucia is!
the heart wrenching poetry of flamenco is the perfect soundtrack for the mixture between old catholic Europe, caliphate's splendour and gipsy charm that makes the towns so peculiar, so familiar and exotic at the same time, that is impossible not to miss them, once back at home.  
warmth, simplicity, brightness followed us (or we followed them?) among white villages {the famous pueblos blancos}, cafe, little churches, big churches, hills and mountains, olive trees and vineyards. icons, tiles, and perfect roads that would be every riders dream and many breakfasts on the road having coffee with pan y tomate.

once again, I fell in love with a corner(stone) of our Europe. my dearest, how precious you are. 

Sevilla, barrio de Santa Cruz, just before leaving for Jerez

schedule, shipment and budget

we took a flight to Sevilla at the end of July and spent 13 days exploring the region. 
the lambretta left a few days before us, and came back a few days later: this time we choose to ship her with a freelance courier we met through Spedingo. not a cheap method, but is the best I could find. 
{if you need to ship something to Spain / Portugal, I can give you our courier's contact info, he's a nice guy, honest and quick to respond. just send me an email}. 

the shipment has been, as always in our case, the more costly expense of our travelling budget. I wouldn't say that Andalucia is a low cost destination, but you can easily move around and event spoil yourself a little without spending much. 

we spent on average 61 euro for lodging and 40 euro for food per day, so, considering that we are 2 people who like to sleep in nice cozy places, eat well and drink wine every day, and on multiple occasions, it's possibile to spend less if needed. 

sunscreen break in Zahara
before leaving, the heat worried us a little. in the end, it wasn't a problem at all. it was hot, yes, even very hot in some cities {yes, Cordoba, I'm talking about you, you damn oven}, but it's manageable. we put a lot of sunscreen while riding, did our siesta everyday after lunch, and ate dinner way later than usual. 

our journey has been 1054 km long. we decided to dedicate more time to SevillaGranada and Cordoba and not to overstretch our ride, keeping the daily distance covered between 100 and 250 km. in order to do that, we included some amazing places into our itinerary but necessarily had to skip others, so our itinerary is the result of reasoned choices but maybe not ideal for everyone. 

itinerary, highlights and tips 

day 1 / Sevilla  

Sevilla, under the Metropol Parasol
arrived in the city, collected the lambretta and first exploration of the historical center. went up the Metropol Parasol. had the first tinto the verano {popular cooler made with red wine and gaseosa} and the first manzanilla {very dry and salty variety of sherry fino} of the trip.

highlights of the day > just arriving there by lambretta, actually. with Sevilla, it has been love at first sight. when we were riding through the narrow cobbled lanes and the yellow/white houses, looking for the hotel, I couldn't stop smiling! the atmosphere of the historical center is amazing.

accommodationhotel Patio de las cruces: great position and pretty andalusian patio
km > less than 20

notes and tips > I got a present for you! it's a two page long table with the opening hours of all Sevilla's historical buildings plus information on when you can enter for free.
I suppose you can easily find it in the tourism office of Sevilla, but I haven't found an equivalent here in the web, so I scanned it for you: page 1 and page 2. you're welcome. 

Sevilla, centro histórico.
during summer, they stretch white sheets from one house to another, above the narrow lanes, to   protect from the sun. the golden light that filters through, dancing when the sheets move in the breeze, is pure magic.

we had tapas everywhere, we had tapas everyday. 
here: sherry fino, olives and jamon at Las Teresas, in Sevilla. 
the spanish word for sherry is jerez, just like the town.

day 2 - 3 / Jerez de la Frontera and Cadiz

temporary home in Jerez de la Frontera

we visited Jerez and Cadiz, had sherry tastings and hang out in tablao to see flamenco. 
I had high expectations for our days in the sherry triangle, and I am happy to say they were not disappointed, which can happen when you heard such enthusiastic opinions from trusted friends while planning a trip. 

highlights of the days > chilling and sleeping in the picturesque cottage I had been dreaming about since the day I booked;  seeing storks and their great nests on the way between Cadiz and Jerez; the tabancos and tablaos of Jerez.

accommodation > charming traditional andalusian cottage near Jerez de la Frontera, found and booked via airbnb
km > 110 from Sevilla to Jerez, around 70 from Jerez to Cadiz and back.

notes and tips > brunch at the Cafe Royalty to see what old Europe looked like, and tapas at the crowded and lively taberna Casa Manteca, both in Cadiz

a lot of tapas bar and restaurants have corrida memorabilia hanging on the walls. I know that I should probably be upset by them, but actually they fascinate me.
this picture is taken in Cadiz, at taberna Casa Manteca.

day 4 / Arcos de la Frontera, El Bosque, Zahara, Montecorto, Ronda

Arcos de la Frontera. exploring the famous "pueblos blancos"

we followed part of an itinerary suggested by our lonely planet guidebook, to explore the pueblos blancos and the natural park Sierra de Grazalema. visited Ronda in the evening. 

highlights of the day > amazing scenic route between Arcos and Montecorto; the small village life.

accommodation > El molino del abuelo, ecofriendy b&b with a cool selection of herbal tea and a pool on the roof, heated with renewable energy 
km > between 150 and 200

notes and tips > if we had more time, we'd like to visit also Sentenil de las Bodegas, a white village where the houses are built directly into the rocks. I'd also recommend to reserve a seat for dinner at El Muelle de Arriate, a restaurant located in an actual train station, just outside Ronda. 

spanish vibes in Montecorto

day 5 /  Parque Natural Sierras de Tejeda, Almijara y Alhama, Otivar

my don Quixote and Roncinante, on the roads of Andalucia

we spent most of the day on the road, then rested in the small village of Otivar, glamping and enjoying outdoors life. 

highlights of the day > having a shower outside with a view on the near mountains; looking at the stars outside the tent. 

accommodation > cozy yurt in the woods near Otivar 
km > around 250

day 6 - 7 - 8 / Granada

Sacromonte, Granada.
we spent 3 days in Granada and tried to get to know the many faces of the city. we walked through the city center, Albayzin, Sacromonte, Realejo neighborhoods, fall in love with the Alhambra, listened to flamenco, had hot chocolate with churros, went to the hammam, look at the city from three different miradores, celebrated our anniversary, enjoyed the famous Granada's free tapas, visited the banos arabes, the capilla real and the catedral

highlights of the days > visiting the Alhambra, one of the most beautiful places we've ever seen; seeing a show at the Generalife open-air theatre; staying in the Sacromonte neighborhood.  

accommodation > la Cueva de Raquel, amazing cave house in Sacromonte
km > less than 100 to arrive to Granada, then we let the lambretta rest for three days.

notes and tips > we took a free walking tour with the guys of Walk in Granada {our guide was Matias} and found it very interesting and pleasant. our favourite spot in town has been the taberna la Tana, great place for wine tasting, with nice tapas too. 

there are no words to describe how wonderful Alhambra decors are.  

day 9 - 10 / Cordoba

Andalusian colors in Cordoba
fighting the heat has been our primary activity in Cordoba, but besides that we managed to visit the incredible Mezquita and the centro flamenco Fosforito, eat a lot of salmorejo, and do some shopping.

highlights of the days > the Mezquita and the view from the torre campanario  

accommodation > El Palacio del Corregidor, central position and nice patio 
km > around 160

notes and tips > the entrance to the Mezquita is free from 8.30 to 9.30.
overlook the awful souvenir shops surrounding la Mezquita! I was really afraid to not be able to find something typical and authentic to bring home, then I stumbled upon a pretty atelier called El humo {calle Cardinal Gonzales, 68 Cordoba}, featuring the artistic pottery work of the artist Jesus Rey. check the website of the Associacion Cirdibesa de Artesanos {I had a nice map with all their artists workshops} to discover more original craft shops. also, I bought a lovely handmade filigree comb at Casa de las Cabezas {calle Cabezas, 18 Cordoba}.
have a drink or a snack at La Bicicleta, nice atmosphere and yummy juices.

day 11 - 12 - 13 / Sevilla

I'm in love with andalusia facades.
Triana, Sevilla 
after one last day on the road, from Cordoba to Sevilla, we spent the rest of the holiday wandering around Sevilla, enjoying her beauty and charm. 

highlights of the days > Sevilla alcazar

accommodation > casa boutique La Pila del Pato, recently restored b&b with lovely rooms. 
km > about 140, then the lambretta was ready to go home.

notes and tips > here's a brief list of shops that, if you like this blog, I think you would like:
- Felix coleccionismo y antigüedades: original vintage spanish posters. avda. Constitución, 26 Sevilla
- antigüedades El Pianillo: antiques store. asecurada de encendios, 15 Sevilla
- nice shops in calle Alcaiceria de la loza
- Santana Material fotografico: good selection of film rolls. plaza del Pan, 3 Sevilla

a bar in Triana, Sevilla

I hope that, despite its length {a real blogger would have divided in at least 3 posts, I suppose! way more SEO friendly eheh}, you enjoy this post, which is the results of many hours of work. if you have any questions, please drop me a line or write in the comment section here. 

keep wandering, keep roadtripping, keep riding vintage.
olè !

Cordoba, ready for the last day on the road

{all pictures taken with Leica d-lux typ 109 + VSCO film}


  1. I read everything and I cannot find work to say enough about work you put here♥
    I enjoy to look at your pictures and imagine how wonderful these few days were, how full of ivents, fatigue and beauty. Wonderful post Silvia and I wish to see more pictures!

    1. thank you dear Anna ♥ it took many hours indeed, but I hope it could be useful or inspiring to someone, southern Spain is so great!
      I'll share some more pictures for sure ;)

  2. bellissimo, sembra di essere lì con voi ♥

  3. I already told you in instagram, what an amazing trip! now that I see this pictures in my desktop I can tell you really enjoyed this adventure. Glad you enjoyed andalucia :)

    1. thank you Barbara! I enjoyed every kilometer of the journey ♥
      do you go often to Andalucia?

  4. sarò indiscreta ma: ❤ mettetemi in valigia!!!

    1. dobbiamo organizzare un viaggetto fotografico insieme!

  5. a parte tutto, fate venir voglia di far girare il calendario alla prossima estate e partire SUBITO ♥
    diari della lambretta = best guide ever!

    1. ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

  6. Replies
    1. you're welcome :) thanks for stopping by, Christian!


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