Rio Tinto&more: Roadtrip through Andalucia

Tomaso from Italy is the lucky winner of our blog writing contest – Congratulations! 🙂 Read on to check out his tips about what secret places to explore in Andalucia. 

Hello, I am Tommaso and  currently doing my Erasmus in Sevilla. I would like to share with you all one of my best adventures travelling around Andalucia. Last week me and a group of friends rented a car and organized a day trip to Sierra Norte because we wanted to visit very unique and unspoiled places. We left in the early morning in order to avoid rush and to have enough time to enjoy each of the place we were goint to visit.

Our first stop was in a small white town called Aracena  where we visited the amazing “Gruta de las Maravillas”. There are no words to describe this wonder of nature, totally well-preserved till today. The guided tour was really interesting and totally worth the 9€ for the ticket.

After that we had a  little break to enjoy the local gastronomy based on Iberian ham and olive oil. We were sitting in the sunshine, the sky was blue … we felt like we were in Spanish paradise!

The second stop of our daytrip was not far from Aracena, in a mining town called Rio Tinto were we were involved in a radically different landscape. The nature destruction carried by mining and the human being hand have totally shaped this place making it undescriptible, like Mars on Earth!!!

After a photo session of me and my friends, we drove straight to “Peña del Hierro”. It´s out of de town and very tricky to reach on foot, so the car is almost compulsory for this kind of trip. We took hundreds of pics, most of them went quickly to Instagram 😉

The last stop of our journey was the best one but also the most difficult to reach. We drove alongside a curvy and narrow road heading to a small village called El Madroño. Just in the middle of the way, there is a sharp curve and just after it there is a rocky and sandy small path on the right. Be careful because it’s very easy to overcome it without noticing. It happened to us. Driving very slowly and carefully you will see a tiny bridge and an open space next to the road where we left the car -attention that´s the only option to park the car. The final part was walking down on foot the little path you will see from the road. After 15 minutes, voilá, we found the “Rio Tinto” in its total dimension, surrounded by pure nature.IMG_0966

This river is unique in the world and is used for NASA to make experiments for incoming expedition to Mars. Live conditions are really poor and are very similar to that on the planet. Following the current of the river we spent some hours haveing a picknick and enjoying the stunning nature. After sunset we headed back to Seville, where we arrived after a 1,5 hour drive. The way back was hard and slow because roads were awful but finally we got home and all of us felt so lucky for having such a stunning day.

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