Tuesday, July 28, 2020


Today I will continue my journey further southwest from Barcelona to Cadiz
In the morning, I can see my cat friends
The station of Sant Celoni, not far from Barcelona
I'm having breakfast on the Media Distancia train to Barcelona Sants
When I was planning my original trip back in April (the one that I had to cancel), I purchased Renfe Spain Pass, which is available for tourists visiting Spain. As the original Interrail is complicated to use in Spain (due to that it is now impossible to book seat reservations in advance), the option with Renfe Spain Pass seemed to be attractive. I bought the one for 4 trips, the price was 270EUR and no extra charge for seat reservation. Anyway, as I could not use the pass back in April, I'm using it now in the summer as it is valid for 6 months. 
The pass is available both in Turista (2nd) and Preferente (1st) class, but due to Covid, Renfe has removed the 1st class and replaced it with Turista Plus. This train will take me from Barcelona to Sevilla.
Unfortunately, no food or drinks were available on the trains in Spain this summer.
For the trip to Seville, Renfe is using AVE Class S102, Talgo 350 trains
The trip between Barcelona and Seville is 830km long, and the trip with high-speed trains takes 5h30min
The train does not stop at Madrid even though the railway is located near the Spanish capital. Instead the train makes stops at Camp de Tarragona, Lleida, Zaragoza, Ciudad Real, Puertollano and Cordoba.
The trip is covering the whole stretch of Barcelona-Madrid and Madrid-Seville high speed railways

I can spot Madrid from the window
Switching from Barcelona-Madrid to Madrid-Seville railways

The new Talgo Avril 

Ciudad Real International airport is now used as a parking space for airplanes due to Covid
According to Wikipedia there are more than 60 planes parked here

Between Ciudad Real and Puertollano, the high-speed Standard gauge railway is built next to the Iberian gauge 
Abandonded houses at Villamayor de Calatrava
Here the train has to slow down to 70km/h due to a tight curve. The high-speed railway to Seville was the first one and was built already in 1992

Almodóvar del Río
38C outside, but very pleasant inside with air condition


The standard gauge railway ends here, in order to continue to Cadiz, I have to change trains
AVE Class S102

Renfe Class S104, part of the Alstom Pendolino family

Sevilla Santa Justa station

Media Distancia train to Cadiz
Renfe Class S449
I'm now traveling on the Iberian gauge railway to Cadiz, in fact, this railway is running all the way from Madrid to Cadiz and was constructed in 1860. During the last 10 years, it was modernized to get a standard permitting 200km/h operations.

Media Distancia trains have vending machines onboard, so it is possible to purchase cold beverages and snacks

After traveling through the North and Mediterranean seas, I'm reaching the Atlantic Ocean here in Cadiz

Cádiz is an ancient port city in the Andalucia region of southwestern Spain. The home of the Spanish Navy, the port boomed in the 16th-century as a base for exploration and trade. It has more than 100 watchtowers, including the iconic Torre Tavira, which was traditionally used for spotting ships. On the waterfront is the domed, 18th-century Cádiz Cathedral, featuring baroque and neoclassical elements. (Google)

The station of Cadiz

Christopher Columbus sailed from Cádiz on his second and fourth voyages and the city later became the home port of the Spanish treasure fleet. Today, the port opposite the train station provides weekly ferry services to the Canary Islands (2–3 days travel time) as well as providing a stop for seasonal cruise ships. (Wikipedia)

On the way to my hotel

Convento de San Francisco
Catedral de Cádiz

After checking in to my hotel, I'm heading back to the station, I will make a short visit to the nearby town of Jerez
The new, modern station was constructed in 2002. There are commuter Cercanias services as well as the regional and long-distance trains.
Alvia train Cadiz-Madrid
Arriving at Jerez de la Frontera
The station is very beautiful here in Jerez

I don't have much time here in Jerez, so I'm taking a short walk through the center.
Plaza las Angustias
Plaza del Arenal

A mask at the vending machine
My train back to Cadiz

The old train station in Cadiz


The view from my hotel room
Parroquia de San Antonio


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