Parque Natural Sierra María-Los Vélez (-10%)

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Sierra María-Los Vélez Natural Park. Hiker's Guide


The Sierra María-Los Vélez Natural Park is one of the great biological treasures of the province of Almeria. This protected area is composed of rugged and spectacular limestone sierras where, due to its orientation, altitude, rugged terrain, privileged enclave (confluence zone between two biogeographical regions) and rainfall (generally scarce and torrential) We will find numerous contrasts that will give rise to diverse ecosystems with a high number of endemisms.

In these limestone sierras the water has molded for millennia an ample karstic production in which lapiaces, polyes, dolines, needles, natural arches, bells, caves or coats are not lacking. Taking advantage of the proliferation of these last gaps and the strategic position of the area, our ancestors of the Paleolithic and Neolithic had this space as a dwelling and transformed the caves and coves into authentic pinacotheques (25 stations counted so far), where we can appreciate a varied Range of cave paintings of various styles, among which stand out those of the Cave of the Letreros, cataloged as a World Heritage Site. In addition to all these natural and artistic gems, the region offers numerous archaeological sites (belonging to the different cultures that have happened here), two National Monuments (the church of the Incarnation, in Vélez-Rubio, and the Renaissance castle of The Fajardo, in Vélez-Blanco), a valuable architectural and ethnographic heritage (churches, hermitages, houses, hydraulic mills, cisterns, farmhouses, lodges, snow pits ...), as well as a distinguished gastronomy.

As a result of the above, one of the main reasons for this work is to make known through the 22 proposed routes, the numerous geological, botanical, fauna and landscape values ​​that the Natural Park owns. These itineraries, selected for this purpose, will also lead us to appreciate part of the valuable prehistoric and ethnographic legacy of the region, as well as the exceptional architectural (religious and civil) heritage of their villages.

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