The Washington Irving Route cycling from Seville to Granada

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This bike route coincides partially with the Roma Via Augustus and was a key itinerary in the days of the Al-Andalus splendour. Washington Irving was fascinated by the eastern qualities that Andalusia offered to the travellers of his generation. He covered the route between Seville (Moorish Ishbiliya) and the capital of the Moorish kingdom of Granada on horseback, searching for stories ingrained into the memory of the local people.

The towns and villages we will cycle through were not only important economic centres on this major trade and frontier route: They themselves have histories dating back thousands of years, with important archaelogical sites having been discovered in the towns of Carmona, Osuna, Antequera, Loja, Montefrío, Moraleda de Zafayona, Alhama de Granada and Íllora. The result: mixed origins dating back to Tartessians, Iberians, Visigoths, Romans and Muslims. Washington Irving described his 1829 journey as “wanderings in the romantic mountains of Andalusia”. We will follow in the foosteps of this tireless seeker of stories and those of the companion and friend, the Russian prince Dimitri Ivanovich, from Seville to Granada. The result of their journey was a book (“Tales of the Alhambra”) that united aspects of Lowland and Highland Andalusia: the two fertile plains of Seville and Granada and two important river valleys, the Guadalquivir and the Genil. He fell in love with his journey, as you will -with mountains, broad horizons, hidden valleys, lakes and streams, legendary places, and the stunning backdrop of snow-covered Sierra Nevada, brought to an end by the arrival in the city of Granada, with all its romantic charm.

The Washington Irving Route is declared a European Cultural Itinerary by the European Council. Cycling on this route you will be able to experience and enjoy many different landscapes, towns and villages along the way, covering on your bike large distances on paths, tracks, cattle trails and country roads with little traffic.

Seville, arrival

Seville, arrival

Arrival in Seville. Make sure to come in time to be able to enjoy the capital of Andalusia, to vist at least the Cathedral and Giralda, but also to wander around in the famous Jewish neighbourhood (your hotel will be right here!), try the great variety of tapas and maybe see some flamenco.

Sevilla - Carmona (46 km)

Sevilla – Carmona (46 km)

We leave behind the jealous stare of the city founded by Hercules to enter an undulating sea of sunflowers. The Guadiara River will accompany us and we will be able to see the flourmills along its banks, and along smooth hills we arrive fast to the ancestral city of Carmona.

Carmona - Osuna (60 km)

Carmona – Osuna (60 km)

From Carmona we take the Royal Cattle Trail to Marchena accompanied by wheat fields and olive groves. We continue to the university city of Osuna where we will enjoy its wealth of monuments.

Osuna - Estepa (30 km)

Osuna – Estepa (30 km)

As we leave Osuna we pass the soft landscape of the Sevillian plain, to go deep into the abrupt mountains of the Betic Mountains. We cycle surrounded by sunflowers towards the "sweet" city of Estepa, where we should try its famous confectionery, a direct tradition from the Moorish legacy.

Estepa - Antequera (60 km)

Estepa – Antequera (60 km)

We are moving from the province of Seville to the Málaga one on arrival at the small salt lake of "Fuente de Piedra" where we are likely to see some flamingos. Then, we will continue through the plains of Antequera marvelling at its lush vegetable gardens until reaching the "old" Antequera.

Antequera - Loja (60 km)

Antequera – Loja (60 km)

The path is not easy, but we will enjoy the sight of the Peña de los Enamorados (Lover's Rock), and after a long and hard climb we arrive to Archidona, where we will be rewarded with a splendid view of the whole fertile plain. Between holm oaks and olive groves we will arrive at the hotel, 8 km before Loja.

Loja - Montefrío (39 km)

Loja – Montefrío (39 km)

After 8 km we arrive to Loja, from where we continue in gentle ascent and descent alongside the Genil river. The typical riverside vegetation now changes to olive groves which will accompany us during the continuous ascent. After reaching the summit we will receive a magnificent reward: Montefrío!

Montefrío - Granada (58 km)

Montefrío – Granada (58 km)

In this stage we will replace the mountains for plains and after following the course of the Genil river we will arrive in Santa Fe (a town founded by the Catholic Monarchs) and finally, to Granada.

Granada, end of journey

Granada, end of journey

After breakfast ends this short break or long weekend in Granada. Maybe you still have some time to stroll through the Alcaicería, full of little Arab shops and souvenirs before returning home.

Accommodation with breakfast


8 night

Information on the trip


Services not included

Bike rental with delivery

Not Included


8 days

Ticket to the Alhambra

Not Included


Entry ticket to visit Alhambra and Generalife, including visit to Alcazaba (fortress), Palacios Nazaries (winter Nasrid palaces) and Generalife gardens (summer palace). We need your full name and passport number to buy the tickets

Luggage transport

Not Included


8 days

Questions about the travel

If you have any questions or suggestions about this tour you can use this simple form, we will respond immediately.