Explore hidden sierras & ancient olive groves by bike…
The Subbetica is a mountainous region and natural park in the centre of Andalucia, half way between Granada and Cordoba. Often featured in La Vuelta tour of Spain, it is a fantastic destination for a road cycling holiday with smooth, open roads, very little traffic and cyclist-friendly locals. For more leisurely cycle touring, explore the quiet backroads, white villages and Via Verde del Aceite greenway.
Casa Olea is a bike-friendly hotel with everything you need for a cycling break, with downloadable suggested GPX routes, safe bike storage, outdoor taps for cleaning, healthy evening meals and bike rental. With 300+ days/year of sunsine, it´s a great location for a cycling trip, especially in the late autumn, winter and early spring; when the weather is not the best in northern Europe. Cycling is a very popular sport here so drivers are respectful and used to giving cyclists lots of space. Scroll down for more on cycling in the Subbetica, our cycle-friendly facilities and suggested cycling routes.
Enjoy a self-guided cycling holiday in the heart of Andalucia. From gently-paced leisure cycling through ancient olive groves and peaceful river valleys, to more challenging climbs amid stunning mountain scenery, as featured on La Vuelta. With lots of the quiet country lanes passing through traditional white villages, this is rural Andalucia at its authentic best.
The Via Verde del Aceite greenway passes through the Subbetica and is the longest greenway in Andalucia at 128km. Now a popular track for cycling and walking, it was once the railway line used for the Olive Oil Train which transported oil from the interior of Jaen and Cordoba to Malaga on the coast. First constructed in 1882, and featuring several large viaducts built by French engineers Daydé et Pile (disciples of Gustave Eiffel), the line was abandoned in 1985. The Via Verde del Aceite greenway opened in 2001.
Casa Olea is a cycling-friendly hotel with secure bike storage, outdoor taps for cleaning, lots of suggested cycling routes, bike rental, track pump and basic tools at your disposal and laundry if required. Plus there´s a gorgeous pool to cool off in and we serve healthy, home-cooked evening meals and local wines to help you re-fuel at the end of the day. And if you´re missing any gear, there is a fantastic local bike shop in Priego de Cordoba, a short drive/ride away. We can also provide airport transfers or bike transport if needed.
If you want to head out from the house on shorter, more leisurely cycle touring we have our own hybrid bikes for rent (20 euros/day), ideal for exploring the quiet backroads or biking along the Via Verde. For longer rides, and for renting e-bikes (35 euros/day) and road bikes (40 euros/day), we work with a local bike centre who can deliver the bikes to Casa Olea for you. We can also provide transport for you and your bikes (at extra cost) if you are planning a more extensive cycling holiday in this part of Andalucia.
The best cycling routes in the Subbetica, Andalucia.
At Casa Olea we have a good selection of recommended routes, of varying lengths (from 11km to 100km) and terrain (road and mtb), to show you the best of the Subbetica. We can provide GPX files for all routes and they are downloadable from our account on the cycling app RidewithGPS.
Don´t hesitate to get in touch if you´re planning a cycling trip to Andalucia and we will do all we can to help. Casa Olea makes a great base for lots of stunning day rides, far away from the crowds.
Subbetica La Vuelta route
Casa Olea - Lake Iznajar - Priego de Cordoba loop
Bike type: road bike. Distance: 94km. Elevation gain: 1854m. Route on Strava.
This is a great circular route, taking you through some of the most spectacular scenery in the Subbetica on well-surfaced, quiet backroads. Part of the route features on Stage 11 of the 2021 La Vuelta tour of Spain (August 24th), with a 15km climb up from Lake Iznajar to Puerto de Lagunillas before you reach Priego. The second part of this same stage of La Vuelta, from Priego to the legendary climb at Valdepeñas de Jaen, forms part of different suggested route of ours.