Travelling by train
The Spanish railway network is run by the state owned company Renfe. International trains from France terminate at either Madrid or Barcelona. From there you can catch a train to many of the cities in Andalucia. There are four different services:
Alta Velocidad (High Speed) These include the magnificent AVE which runs on a special line from Madrid to Cordoba and Seville (under 3 hrs). The line Madrid - Malaga is currently under construction and will be put into operation in 2007. There is also the Talgo 200 train which runs from Madrid to Malaga (4.5 hrs), to Cadiz (5 hrs), to Huelva (4.5 hrs) and to Algeciras (6 hrs).
Grandes Lineas (Long Distance) Services from Madrid and Barcelona direct to most of the major cities in Andalucia: Huelva, Seville, Cadiz, Jerez de la Frontera, Algeciras, Malaga, Cordoba, Granada, Almeria, Linares / Baeza. There is also a service from Cadiz to Almeria via Jerez, Seville, Cordoba and Linares / Baeza.
Regionales (Regional) There is a network of regional trains that stop at the smaller intermediate stations en route. See these routes on the map below:
Cercanias (Local) These stopping trains operate from Malaga to Fuengirola (calling at Malaga airport) and to Alora, from Seville to Cazalla-Constantina, to Loria del Rio and to Utrera, and from Cadiz to Jerez de la Fronterra.
Booking and Tickets Booking is advisable on the 'Alta Velocidad' and 'Grandes lineas' if travelling at weekends and bank holidays. Booking can be made at main stations and RENFE agents which includes many travel agents. Tickets are reasonably priced but prices vary depending on the class of service (Club, Preferente, Turista) and the peak hour times (Punta, Plano, Valle).
Andalucia Express The Al Andalus Expreso is a special train which offers high quality service in refurbished coaches built in the early part of the 20th century. The excursions in the summer visit some of the popular cities of Andalucia.