Are you seeking an extraordinary nature-oriented holiday in Spain, brimming with unforgettable encounters with wildlife and breathtaking landscapes? Look no further than Wildside Holidays. This exceptional platform connects you with local businesses that possess an intimate knowledge of Spain’s natural environment. By engaging directly with these experts, you can craft a personalized holiday that aligns perfectly with your interests and preferences. From walking and cycling adventures to wildlife encounters and birdwatching tours.Continue reading Walking and Wildlife Holidays in Spain: Exploring Nature’s Paradise
Internationally known to nature lovers, the Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park is beautiful at any time of the year. As well as the stunning scenery, the mountain range is adorned by popular Andalusian White Villages which boast a combination of picturesque views, multiple footpaths, tourist information centers, museums, shops, bars, restaurants, hotels, and privately-owned rural accommodation for those seeking more seclusion. There is also the option of Guided wildlife tours in the The Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park.
What is the Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park best known for?
Grazalema is a walkers paradise! https://wildsideholidays.co.uk/the-sierra-de-grazalema-natural-park-a-walkers-paradise/
- Spanish Fir Trees (Abies pinsapo) a living relict from the tertiary era which have continued to grow in 3 forests in SW Andaluciá.
- Grazalema Poppy (Papaver rupifragum) one of the wild plant species that we share with North Africa.
- A variety of terrestrial wild orchids. (Around 40 species)
- Spanish Ibex (Capra pyrenaica) a well camouflaged wild mountain goat.
- Soaring eagles, vultures, and a wide selection of birdlife.
- A large number of footpaths cover varied habitats, including cork oak forest, riverside gallery, limestone mountain peaks, gorges, caves, and cliffs.
- Mild winters with high rainfall statistics, and hot Mediterranean summers, making a perfect combination for some unusual plant species.
In a natural park of over 51,000 hectares, how do you know where to go?
Would you prefer to have someone else do the research for you?
”Nature Plus – Grazalema” is a friendly nature guiding service that offers tailored 1/2 day or full day routes to individuals or small groups.
This gives you the opportunity to be specific about what you would like to see. Popular requests include; orchids, butterflies, wildflowers, birds, dragonflies, amphibians & reptiles. Also figuring importantly on wish lists are; general nature, mixed habitats & impressive views.
A major benefit is that you are not being urged to constantly catch up with a large, noisy group. You can relax, take photos and you’ll get to see so much more and at a gentle pace. You’ll also be able to ask questions as we go, as your guide is close by.
Sue Eatock is originally from the UK and has lived in Grazalema since 2005, where she has specialized in the fauna and flora of the area. This is a hobby that has turned into a business, so her passion for the local nature shines through.
Why have a guide at all?
With a guide, you will experience so much more, without having to put in hours of research, carry maps, or worry about the most suitable route.
As an example, let’s imagine for a moment that you would love to see the endemic Grazalema poppy (Papaver rupifragum). Where should you look for it, which month, and what time of day is best? This is when a local guide is a huge asset, taking you to exactly the right place.
If you are exploring the area over a few days, one day out with a guide will show you what to look for, where, and help you to identify what you are seeing.
Find out more about Sue and what Nature plus – Grazalema can do to help you get the best out of a visit to the Sierra de Grazalema here: https://wildsideholidays.co.uk/nature-plus-grazalema/
Read more about natural parks, wildlife and walking holidays in Andalucia here: https://wildsideholidays.co.uk/natural-and-national-parks-in-andalucia/
The Grazalema Guide
The best way to see all our web projects in one place is over at the Grazalema Guide.
The Grazalema Guide – Tourist Information Portal for the Sierra de Grazalema, Wildside Holidays, The town of Ronda and the Caminito del Rey.
‘Grazalema has the some of the highest rainfall records in Spain’. This is a phrase that is commonly found on the internet, but without further explanation could be very off putting to the holiday maker! Mountains will always alter their local climate where-ever they are in the world, and this is no exception. Note that only a few hours drive away at the eastern end of Andalucia is Europe’s only desert! So here is a bit about the weather In Grazalema.
Read about the sierra de Grazalema here: https://grazalemaguide.com/blog/the-sierra-de-grazalema-natural-park/
Read about water in the Sierra de Grazalema here: https://grazalemaguide.com/blog/water-in-the-grazalema-natural-park/Continue reading The Weather In Grazalema
One of Spain’s most stunning natural parks. A fabulous location to spend time be it resting, walking, bird watching or photography. The Sierra de Grazalema – A Walkers Paradise
Grazalema is to be found in the north east part of Cadiz province (at a height of 800m) in the mountain range bearing the same name Sierra de Grazalema. In 1977 this area was declared a “Biosphere Reserve” by UNESCO due to the exceptional variety and wealth of its fauna and flora. In 1984 it was made the first Nature Park of Andalucia by the Junta de Andalucia.
Read about Grazalema here: https://wildsideholidays.co.uk/grazalema-the-white-village-of-the-sierra/
The park status envelopes several beautiful towns and villages; Grazalema, El Bosque, Ubrique, Zahara de la Sierra, Benaocaz, Benamahoma, Prado del Rey, and Villaluenga del Rosario are within the Cadiz side of the park. Benaojan, Cortes de la Frontera and Montejaque, are in Malaga province.
The white villages of the Sierra de Grazalema: https://wildsideholidays.co.uk/the-white-villages-pueblos-blancos-of-the-sierra-grazalema/
The parkland consists of 51,695 hectares of which the highest point is El Torreon at 1,654m. These limestone mountains form the western tip of the Cordillera Betica range and there is only low lying land from here to the Atlantic coast. A history of high rainfall has created the cliffs, crags, caves, sink holes, river valleys and gorges that make the area so varied.
FAUNA and FLORA
Abies pinsapo: Grazalema and Ronda have the last examples of these fir trees, living fossils that grew in the Tertiary period and still exist today.
Papaver rupifragum, Phlomis x margaritae, Echinospartum algibicum and Erodium recoderi are plants that are endemic to the park. These plants and many others, special to Andalucia, are best seen in the collection at the Botanic Gardens in El Bosque.
There are 30+ different species of orchids that flower here, beginning in January with most peaking during the spring. Many can be easily seen at the road and path sides.
The Mediterranean scrub consists mainly of wild Olive, Retama, Lentisc, Phlomis, Quercus coccifera, Genista, Oleander, Rhamnus and Cistus. Woods and forests are made up of pine trees and evergreen oaks including the important cork oak Quercus suber.
Large soaring birds, if seen in a group, are likely to be Griffon vultures. There is a large breeding colony in Garganta Verde. Eagles seen are Booted, Short-toed, Bonelli’s or Golden. There are also several Egyptian vultures breeding in the park. Other birds to look out for are Red billed chough, Lesser kestrel, Hoopoe, Bee-eater, Black-wheatear, Blue rock thrush, Rock thrush and Woodchat shrike.
Mammals are mainly nocturnal but wild mountain goats can be seen on mountain walks. (Often near the roads in colder months.) Red deer, Fox, Hare Egyptian mongoose, Stone martin, Genet and Wild Boar are more difficult to see.
There are around 80 butterflies listed for the park. The Two–tailed pasha, Cardinal, Cleopatra, Spanish Swallowtail, Large Tortoiseshell and Marsh fritillary are some of the largest and more easily seen.
Everything you need to know before you visit Ronda “The city of dreams” in Andalucia. https://www.rondatoday.com/
Wildside Holidays – Spain
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