Five new “greenways” recently opened in Spain include La Costera Sur in the Murcia region. More than one hundred “vía verde” routes cross-cross the country, covering over 2,900 kilometres and offering hikers and cyclists an environmentally friendly way of travelling to discover Spain’s culture and landscapes – while also connecting cities to the local countryside. The routes are old disused railway lines that have been recovered and reconditioned.
According to Spain’s national tourism board, “The expansion of these greenway networks aims to provide a way to discover Spain’s region at a slower pace while keeping active on foot or by bike. Thanks to their accessibility, ease and safety, with almost no slopes and far from motor traffic, they are especially attractive for any person who wants to discover the natural environment and the cultural heritage of the towns and territories they cross.”
An accessible guide is also available to provide detailed information and maps showing which routes are suitable for those with reduced mobility.
The five new routes opened in 2022 are located in Ciudad Real, Gipuzkoa, La Coruña, Tarragona and Murcia.
Not used since 2008, the La Costera Sur greenway in Murcia is 8.5 kilometres long and follows the abandoned section of the old Madrid-Cartagena railway line. The route begins in the outskirts of Murcia city, near Huerta de San Benito, and it passes through the districts of Los Garres, San José de la Vega, Beniaján, Torreagüera and Los Ramos, travelling between the Dolores and Alquerías neighbourhoods.
Along the route, travellers can explore fields of orchards and olive groves, enjoy mountain views, and discover the culture and gastronomy of Murcia’s urban areas.
The other four new greenway routes are:
- Trenillo de la Calzá in Castilla La Mancha – winding through holm oaks and fields of almond and olive trees, and passing through settlements from the bronze age and the Sala de los Moros (Iberian burial mound).
- Añorga-Errekalde-Lasarte in the Basque Country – offering a backdrop of the Urgull and Igueldo mountains and following the Oria river valley to La Concha, Ondarreta and Zurriola beaches.
- Compostela-Tambre-Lengüelle in Galicia – comprising more than 26 kilometres of the old Santiago-A Coruña railway line.
- Delta de l´Ebre in Tarragona (Cataluña) – visiting attractions including the Coetera de Ravanals, an official site of national cultural interest.