Cadiz and SEVILLE TO CORDOBA and JAEN ROUTE
By Fiona Flores Watson and Chris Chaplow
Time: 4 hrs 50min to 5hrs 30min
Frequency: four trains daily
Stops: Cadiz, San Fernando-Bahia Sur, Puerto Real, Puerto de Santa Maria, Jerez de la Frontera, Jerez Aeropuerto, Librija, Utrera, Dos Hermanos, Sevilla-Virgin del Rocio, Sevilla-San Bernardo, Sevilla Santa Justa, Lora del Rio, Peñaflor, Palma del Rio, Posadas, Cordoba, Villa del Rio, Andujar, Espeluy, Jaen.
Cadiz to Sevilla
The train leaves the historic city of Cadiz and heads south to the industrial town of San Fernando, which sits on the same peninsula. The line circles the bay of Cadiz and crosses the river Guadalete near the towns of Puerto Real (which has a natural reserve made up of three lakes). The line is double track in this section around the bay of Cadiz and is single track thereafter. It is overhead electrified and operated by RENFE Class 449 Electrical Multiple Units.
The train arrives at the pleasant family resort of El Puerto de Santa Maria, and then the city of Jerez de la Frontera, city of sherry, horses and flamenco also home to sherry bodegas (these towns are two points on the Sherry Triangle). Heading north most trains the train stop at the new station for Jerez Airport.
The line then follows the route of the Guadalquivir river, and its next station is Lebrija, the last town before you leave the Cadiz province and enter Sevilla province.; there’s a natural reserve between these last two towns. Only a few trains stop at the next station which is below the small hilltown of Las Cabezas de San Juan, on the eastern edge of the Doñana Park. Next the line turns north east, stopping first at Utera an agricultural town with some impressive Baroque houses and an important Moorish fortress and some say the cradle of Flamenco. Utrera is the terminal of the Seville's Cercanias network.
The train then passes through the Campiña, a fertile, rolling, sparsely populated lowland to the south and east of Seville, whose fields are planted with olive trees and cereals.
The following stop is Dos Hermanas, the satellite town to the south-east of Seville which has become a city in its own right.
This line heads north into the Andalucian capital Sevilla, stopping first at the city stations of Virgen del Rocio, next to the hospital complex of the same name;San Bernardo, near the Prado de San Sebastian and La Buhaira.
Sevilla to Cordoba
The train heads north-east out of Seville, more or less following the route of the Bajo Guadalquivir, the lower basin of the Guadalquivir river. It also has the AVE line alongside, although this new high-speed track takes a much straighter course than the older, windier line. It stops first at Lora del Rio,at the southern limit of the Sierra Norte nature park.
The next stop is the village of Peñaflor, then Palma del Rio, where the Guadalquivir and Genil rivers meet. This town is the home of El Cordobes,the famous bullfighter. The last stop before Cordoba is Posadas; look out for Almodovar del Rio castle, on the left of the railway line.
Cordoba to Jaen
After Cordoba,you reach Villa Del Rio, still following the Guadalquivir, then the train enters Jaen province, climbing up into the Sierra de Andujar Natural Park, a popular hunting area which forms part of the extensive Sierra Morena ,before calling at Andujar. Soon after this stop, the line branches south towards Jaen, now alongside the river Guadalbullon.
The final stop before reaching the city of Jaen itself is the small but historic town of Espeluy with its Moorish castle, formerly an important junction on this line connecting the provincial capital with other parts of the area; then you arrive at Jaen.