Today, May 24th, is remembered the time a Swedish natural park became the first to enter a European network of natural parks, the Europarc federation. This is why we celebrate the European Day of Parks. This year it has been presented under the motto “our national treasures”, emphasising the role of natural parks on social well-being. In Spain, we are lucky to have many natural parks, some of which are found inside this network, for instance, the well-known park of Doñana.
At Wiber we are aware that parks help us reduce our footprint and promote sustainability. Also, we know that they are beautiful for a day trip visit. This is why we have decided to introduce you to our three favourite parks: so you can be as delighted as we are by the beauty around us, only one step away from home.
NATURAL PARK OF PEÑÓN DE IFACH – ALICANTE
The Peñón de Ifach is placed at Marina Alta, more specifically at Calpe, on the North side of Alicante, a Wiber destination. Although it only has about 53 hectares, making it the tiniest natural park of the Valencian region, it has many typical Mediterranean species of plant life, and it’s a shelter for different birds like the cormorant, the gannet, the peregrine falcon or the swift.
It is well re-known as a tourist attraction since it’s a part of the Alicantinian coast skyline. It has a hiking route with two different levels of difficulty that goes through it and guides you to the top of the Peñón, 332m high. It’s worth it to take it because of its wonderful views. However we advise against it if you are a claustrophobic person: part of the route goes through a rock tunnel. If you are not into it, Alicante has other hiking routes we can recommend you! And for the brave, it also has more than 40 climbing paths.
As a curiosity, we will tell you that maybe over a thousand years ago, the Peñón was a small island isolated from the Peninsula. Nowadays, the union point is still very little, so much that it gets flooded when the cold fronts arrive.
NATURAL PARK OF SA DRAGONERA – MALLORCA
The little island that gives name to the park, Sa Dragonera, is not the only one that forms this natural park: it’s accompanied by Pantaleu and Sa Mitjana. Although the highest concentration of biodiversity is found at Sa Dragonera. It is located at the city of Andratx, at Wiber’s destination of Mallorca. Since it is an ensemble of little islands, you can only get there by boat. Every day visitors depart from Andratx Harbour, Santa Ponça, Peguera and Sant Elm, beingthis last one the fastest one, so you will have no problem to come to visit.
Besides unique species of sargantanes (lizards) and busquerets, a native bird, you will be able to see fishing eagles or falcons when you walk to visit the Na Pòpia lighthouse or Llebeig’s defense tower that still maintains its iron cannon on its highest part.
We are talking about walking because there are four different hiking routes easy to follow that guide you through the park. Depending on the time you wish to invest and your physical capacities, you can choose between the Na Miranda itinerary (30min), the Faro de Tramuntana route (60min), the Faro viejo na Pòpia one (3h) or the Faro des Llebeig path (3h). However, walking it’s not the only thing you can do at Sa Dragonera: it’s one of the best spots to practice scuba diving at this Balearic island, ideal for adventure sports fans.
NATURAL PARK OF SIERRA NEVADA – MÁLAGA
This natural park, which we have already explained how to reach on a different post, is located at Sierra de Ronda, on the west side of Málaga’s province. It was declared a Biosphere Reservation by the UNESCO and, because of its great biodiversity, Special Area of Bird Protection. As a part of the Europarc federation, it has activities planned for May 25th.
It has a beautifully uneven topography, with high mountains like the Pico de Torrecilla, the highest from Andalucía, and the Mulhacén, the highest for the whole Iberian Peninsula with its 3479m. It also has cliffs like El Tajo de la Caída, 100m deep, or the third deepest chasm, Gesm, 1098m deep.
All around it a big tourist industry has developed: it is usual that skiing enthusiasts, as well as hikers or fishing lovers, find their place here. With little to no complications, it’s easy to enjoy your holidays in the wild.
We are sure that if you are a little adventurous or you love the nature, you will truly enjoy visiting these natural parks, so don’t over-think it: plan your route, rent your stress-free car and enjoy your holidays to the top. Let’s go!