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8 of the Greatest Nationwide Parks in Spain for Outside Adventures

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wide valley with woodland and a grassy meadow in front of a mountain scape with a very tall conical mountain peak rising above the others surroudned by clouds. Picos de Europa, best national parks in Spain

Your information to the very best Nationwide Parks in Spain for mountaineering, biking, and different outside adventures…

Whenever you consider Spain, it’s straightforward to image the nation’s vibrant cities, beautiful seashores, and wealthy cultural heritage. However do you know that Spain can also be house to a few of Europe’s most breathtaking nationwide parks?

From rugged mountains and dramatic gorges to lush forests and pristine shoreline, Spain’s pure magnificence will depart you awestruck.

These beautiful nationwide parks are additionally the PERFECT setting for journey. There are mountaineering and biking trails galore, and ski slopes within the mountains throughout winter. In summer time, you possibly can go kayaking on winding rivers or horse driving alongside forested mountain trails.

For thrill-seekers, there’s additionally a plethora of journey sports activities to attempt, together with mountain climbing, canyoning, rafting, caving, and paragliding.

So lace up your mountaineering boots and prepare to expertise some new adventures at the very best nationwide parks in Spain…

8 Greatest Nationwide Parks in Spain

There are fifteen nationwide parks in Spain – masking all kinds of landscapes. Under, I’ve outlined just a few of the perfect for mountaineering, biking, and different outside adventures.

The next rankings are based mostly on a examine by Spain-Vacation, which ranked all of the nation’s parks based mostly on 3 completely different knowledge factors: the quantity of mountaineering routes within the parks and every park’s ranking on Google and on AllTrails.

1. Picos de Europa: Asturias, Cantabria and León

Climbing, mountain climbing, and mountain views

mountain valley with a small village of red roofed houses amongst green hills with a rocky mountain behind and misty clouds above. best national parks in spain.

Nestled within the north of Spain, the Picos de Europa Nationwide Park is a paradise for hikers and nature fans. With over 150 mountaineering trails listed on All Trails, 30 self-guided driving routes, and 17 viewpoints dotted throughout the park, there are dozens of the way to absorb the dramatic mountain landscapes of this beautiful nationwide park.

Picos de Europa can also be house to the Ruta Vadiniense, an epic long-distance strolling path that connects the Camino Santiago with the Camino del Norte.

Anticipate towering limestone peaks, deep gorges, and densely forested valleys. Though the mountain landscapes are snowy in winter, there aren’t any ski resorts within the Picos de Europa – this nationwide park is finest identified for its mountaineering and rock-climbing alternatives.

Don’t miss the Teleférico de Fuente Dé, a cable automobile that rises from 1094 to 1847m above sea stage, for panoramic views that can take your breath away. I did this just a few years in the past once I was exploring Cantabria and I extremely suggest it.

2. Sierra Nevada: Andalusia

Snowboarding, snowboarding, mountaineering, and path working

person in white with a yellow helmet skiing on a snowy mountain slope with blue sky above
Estacion de Sierra Nevada, Pradollano

Sierra Nevada Nationwide Park, situated within the area of Andalusia, is a year-round playground for outside fans. In winter, it’s a ski lover’s dream, boasting a few of Spain’s finest ski resorts.

Ski lifts go from Sierra Nevada village to a myriad of slopes to swimsuit all learners. In addition to snowboarding and snowboarding on the slopes – you may as well attempt snowshoeing and cross-country snowboarding within the later months of the season (January to March). 

Throughout the hotter months, the park comes alive with mountaineering, mountain biking, and mountain climbing alternatives. The high-altitude meadows are dotted with wildflowers, making a picturesque backdrop in your adventures. And if you would like an entire new perspective on the Sierra Nevada’s mountainscapes, you can even attempt your hand at paragliding!

Path working is a well-liked journey sport all 12 months spherical. The excessive peaks have some glorious trails throughout the summer time months, and in winter the decrease elements of the nationwide park are under the same old snow restrict. So in case you’re a fan of path working, the Sierra Nevada is the place for you!

3. Teide Nationwide Park: Tenerife

Stargazing, mountaineering, and wildlife recognizing

desert and scrubland in front of a brown and gray mountain with blue sky above
El Teide Volcano

Tenerife, a part of the Canary Islands, is house to Teide Nationwide Park. It’s named for Mount Teide, Spain’s highest peak at a whopping 3,715m above sea stage. This towering volcano is the star attraction within the nationwide park. You may hike to the summit – or take the cable automobile up – for a view that’s out of this world.

The lunar-like landscapes surrounding the large volcanic crater at Mt Teide’s summit can seem to be you’ve stepped onto one other planet. Fashioned by numerous volcanic eruptions, these weird landscapes are – maybe surprisingly – a haven for wildlife.

There are 168 plant species, 58 of which exist solely on the Canary Islands; maintain your eyes peeled for the putting Teide Violet, which solely grows at altitudes of over 2,500 metres. There’s additionally an abundance of wildlife and birdlife to look out for, a number of of that are endemic to the island: such because the Tenerife Gecko, the Tenerife blue chaffinch (aka the Teide Finch), and the Canary big-eared bat.

Teide is also referred to as a primary stargazing location – particularly the height of Mount Teide, from which you’ll see 83 of the 88 constellations.

Removed from the sunshine air pollution of Tenerife’s cities, this peak has been formally recognised as a Starlight Vacation spot due to its good stargazing situations. Take a stargazing tour or head to the Teide Observatory – the world’s largest photo voltaic observatory.

4. Ordesa y Monte Perdido: Huesca (Aragon)

Canyoning, mountain mountaineering, and snowshoeing

shallow winding river in a valley surrounded by rocky snowcapped mountains
Ordesa Valley

Situated within the Pyrenees Mountains, Ordesa y Monte Perdido Nationwide Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Website and one in all Spain’s best-loved nationwide parks. With a Google ranking of 4.9, you possibly can count on nice issues from this mountainous area on the French border.

The park’s crown jewel is the Ordesa Valley, a glacial canyon surrounded by towering peaks. Climbing trails of various issue ranges crisscross the park, providing one thing for everybody. You’ll want to discover the beautiful Monte Perdido, which stands at over 3,000 meters, offering awe-inspiring vistas.

For journey fans, there are a number of canyoning alternatives in Ordesa y Monte Perdido Nationwide Park. Get hands-on expertise with the park’s river-filled canyons as you leap, slide, climb, and rappel by the ravines! In winter, the snow-covered landscapes present the right alternative for sports activities corresponding to mountain climbing and snowshoeing excursions.

5. Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici: Catalonia

Watersports, mountaineering, and biking

aerial view of a pine forest around a bright blue lake with a large sandy beach next to it

Situated within the Catalan Pyrenees, this nationwide park is a little bit of a hidden gem. Its identify could be a tongue-twister, however the pure magnificence is pure poetry!

That is the one one in all Spain’s fifteen nationwide parks discovered inside Catalonia (aka Catalunya). Alpine lakes, dense forests, and jagged peaks await adventurers. Hike to the Sant Maurici Lake for a picture-perfect second surrounded by the beautiful Aigüestortes panorama.

Whereas the 47 mountaineering routes and quite a few biking and horse driving alternatives are good for exploring – the true pleasure of this nationwide park is discovered on the water! Aigüestortes is crisscrossed with rivers and lakes, which give wealthy habitats for birds and wildlife. In addition they present ample alternatives for watersports, from the mild (fishing, kayaking, and paddleboarding) to the extra thrilling (rafting, hydrospeed, and canyoning).

6. Sierra de Guadarrama: Castile and León

Winter sports activities, mountain climbing, and mountain biking

2 women carrying large backpacks hiking on a rocky mountain path in Guadarrama National Park near Madrid Spain

Only a stone’s throw away from Madrid, Sierra de Guadarrama Nationwide Park presents a handy escape to nature for these visiting the Spanish capital. The park is characterised by its rugged terrain, excessive peaks, and dense forests.

It’s a haven for outside actions like mountaineering and mountain biking – with six official bike routes, eight signposted mountaineering path, and 202 trails listed on AllTrails. You may even take a guided horseriding tour to discover the mountain surroundings – the right approach to get again to nature!

And in winter, the park transforms right into a snowy wonderland, making it a well-liked vacation spot for snowboarding and snowshoeing.

Sierra de Guadarrama is also referred to as one of many most essential areas in Spain for mountain climbing. With all kinds of climbs to swimsuit all ranges and talents – and a spread of programs on supply – it’s a fantastic place to study mountain climbing!

7. Sierra de las Nieves: Andalusia

Caving, canyoning, mountaineering, and horse driving

dirt track in a mountain landscape next to a forest with a grey rocky mountain behind and blue sky above. best national parks in spain.

Nestled within the province of Malaga, Sierra de las Nieves Nationwide Park is a pristine wilderness that beckons explorers. It’s identified for its beautiful limestone formations, dense forests, and, after all, the rugged Sierra Blanca mountain vary.

Hike to the summit of La Torrecilla for panoramic views that stretch all the best way to the Mediterranean Sea. Down under, the karstic landscapes are house to a wealthy community of caves, sinkholes, and galleries, together with the deepest vertical collapse Andalusia.

You may attempt caving or potholing with an area tour firm for an exciting underground journey. There are a lot extra actions to entice journey seekers, together with canyoning, canoeing, and horse driving.

For hikers, there are a selection of trails crisscrossing the park. One of the best identified is the Gran Senda de Málaga, a 650km long-distance path throughout the entire area which might be damaged down into 35 phases. Or there’s the 10km Ruta de las Cascadas which is able to take you previous a number of lovely waterfalls, together with the 51m excessive Barranco de la Rejía. As you hike, look out for the distinctive Spanish fir, which is simply discovered on this area.

8. Garajonay: La Gomera

Forest mountaineering, wildlife, and tradition

Evergreen forest in Garajonay national park with tourist footpath on La Gomera island in Spain

Discovered on the island of La Gomera within the Canary Islands, Garajonay Nationwide Park is a lush, subtropical paradise. The world’s gentle temperatures and excessive humidity create a particular microclimate – house to various plants and distinctive animal species endemic to the Canary Islands.

Nearly all of this little-known pure wonderland is coated with dense laurel forests. This pre-historic forest of twisted, moss-clad timber above a thick carpet of ferns covers round 70% of the park. There are additionally deep ravines, towering peaks, and twisted rock formations fashioned by the erosion of volcanic rock. All in all, Garajonay is a must-visit for nature fans.

Discover the community of mountaineering trails that wind by the traditional forest landscapes, and don’t overlook to look as much as spot the colorful native chicken species.

Though the Nationwide Park itself is uninhabited, La Gomera has a wealthy cultural heritage that’s price exploring. Pay attention out for the native whistled language, the silbo Gomero, a UNESCO World Heritage custom which was developed by the island’s authentic inhabitants to speak throughout the valleys.

Are you aware any extra incredible nationwide parks in Spain? Scroll right down to share within the feedback!

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