Sierra de Aracena
Flora and fauna
The town of Aracena is about an hour and a quarter from Seville by car, and is reached by taking the A66/E-803 north from the city (direction Merida). The Aracena turnoff is about 35 kilometers along this road.
Buses ply the route to Aracena from Sevilla's Plaza de Armas bus station twice daily. For more information about bus times see the [Andalusia.com] website.
Other villages are serviced by less frequent buses. Many of these originate in Aracena.
Trains from running from Huelva to Safra also cross the Sierra with a station at Almonastar Cortegana.
For many tourists to Andalucia, the Sierra de Aracena comeas as something of a surprise. This range of hills, lush with cork oak forests and bright with flowers almost year-round has a cooler climate than that of the Guadalquivir river valley. It is also a hiker's wonderland with trails leading through some of the most enchanting countryside in all of Southern Spain.
While the region may come as a surprise to many outsiders, the Sierra de Aracena is a popular weekend getaway for Sevillanos (as the locals of Seville are known). Many own cottages or houses in the almost uniformlly pretty villages scattered through the region.
Day trips are also popular. Two of the most popular attractions in the Sierra are the Gruta de las Maravillas (Cave of Marvels) in Aracena and the 10th century mosque at Almonaster la Real.