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Local Activities

Life is as sleepy as you want it to be out here. You can always spend an afternoon sitting in the sun with a cool drink in hand, watching the odd cloud drift by, or you can indulge yourself in a wide variety of activities. New activities are always springing up, and as we hear about them, we'll publish them, along with any contact details we can get hold of.


The lake at Iznajar is great for fishing. It is 30 KM long, and has many quiet inlets to while away the day fishing. The lake itself is quite deep, up to 150 ft at it's centre. The lake houses mainly common carp, but also has black bass, barbel, tench, mullet, pike and trout. Aparantly the average size for a carp is in the 3 - 5 lb range, but there are a good number of fish above 15 lb in the lake. Local licences for fishing are required.


Long distance footpath GR7 crosses Europe, and passes through inland Spain and the Subbetica along the way. The stretch from Almedinilla to Rute is 32 kilometres, and links historic Priego with the Roman villa of Almedinilla, the Moorish ruins of Rute and weaves among the high sierras along the way. The estimated walk time is 9 hours. There is a free leaflet pack (with 10 further walks, all in Spanish) from Mancomunidad de Subbetica office, and Priego Tourist Office.

There aren't too many decent maps of inland Spain, and those that you can find are generally very poor at indicating rights of way and footpaths. Mapa Guia Parque Natural Sierra Subbeticas (1:50,000) is produced by the Junta de Andalucia, and at least covers most of this corner of inland Spain on a single map. The series Cartografia Militar de Espana (1:50,000) has slightly better detail. Four maps of this series, Lucena(17-40), Baena(17-39), Alcala la Real(18-40) and Alcaudete(18-39) together will cover the whole area. All of them are available from Stanfords of Longacre, London (0207 836 1321, www.stanfords.co.uk ).


The area has little traffic apart from the main roads through the area, so the winding country roads are a delight for cyclists. From Cuevas de San Marcos it is possible to cycle around the lake to Iznajar, or over the Embalse near the village and up into the hills near Rute.

The Via Verde del Aceite and the Via Verde de la Subbetica run through the Sierra Subbetica. This is an abandoned railway line that has been converted into a walking and cycling track that passes through some of the most beautiful scenery in the area. These two tracks run together to form a 110 kilometre stretch of off-road walking and cycling. There are many small villages to stop at for a bite to eat along the way.


The river valley that Cuevas de San Marcos sits above, and the network of farm tracks and trails that lead down to and along the slow flowing river, make it ideal as a base for riding.

Nothing is better than a gentle evening trek on horseback among the hills, watching the sun slowly turning the hills into red and gold silhouettes. Or trek up to the 900m peak above the village, and take in the views across the lake. We can organise a days riding for you with stables in the village. All the horses are well bred and a good natured Andalucian thoroughbreds.


Antequera Golf is a 20 minute drive away, and is a top notch course, high in the hills above this beautiful town, with views across the plain, and high mountains as a backdrop.

The golf course has excellent facilities, a lovely rural clubhouse for meals and drinks, full golf cart facilities, club hire and a driving range. Golf widows should note that the Hotel Antequera Golf has excellent and inexpensive spa facilities.

The course itself is fairly challenging, with a number of water obstacles, and some steep ravines to overcome. Bring some spare balls! Play needs to be prebooked, so for those staying at our hotel Casa-Bob, or our rental accommodation they can take advantage of our 10% discount.


Andalucia is a dream for photographers. During the summer months, the light during the middle of the day is too harsh to yield any distinctive pictures, but the early mornings and evenings turn any landscape into contours of gold, brown and black. The white villages of the area make a fascinating subject in themselves, with their ruined castles, churches and rustic buildings. Landscape photographers will literally have a field day, framing shots of rugged limestone outcrops and dense woodland, or rolling valleys filled with symetrical patterns of olive trees. El Torcal above Antequera, should not be missed as a photo trip.

A visit to Seville, Cordoba or Granada will bring back bucketloads of great shots of any of the historic Arab buildings there. I can particularly recommend the Alhambra Palace in Granada, the Alcazar in Seville, and the Mezquita in Cordoba. Bring plenty of extra film or memory cards.


Nothing is quite as relaxing as sitting painting in a quiet corner of the world, with only birdsong for company. There is ample opportunity to do this in the Sierra Subbetica, and plenty of beautiful landscapes to fill up your canvases with.

Zuheros to the north east of the region is a particularly lovely location, with a deep gorge running toward the village, and the village itself nestled on a outcrop beneath rocky crags. Elsewhere, Iznajar and the whole of the lake area offer brilliant vistas, as do many other locations throughout the area.


Spain isn't just about the summer. The Sierra Nevada Ski resort is about an hour away from the area, and offers modern facilities and top notch skiing or boarding from Nov til April. Amazingly, you can see Africa from up on the slopes on a clear day, and you can ski in the morning, and go to the beach for the afternoon.