Los Alcornocales Natural Park

 

Parque Natural de los Alcornocales, one of Europe’s largest parks.

parque natural de los alcornocales tarifaThe Natural Park of los Alcornocales has with its 167.767 km² as one of Europe’s largest nature parks and is home to the largest forest of cork oaks in the Iberian peninsula.

The natural park is located mostly in the province of Cadiz but in some areas exceeds the limits of the province of Malaga. The southernmost point of the Park is tarifa and extends from there to the municipals of Alcalá de los Gazules, Algar, Algeciras, Arcos de la Frontera, Los Barrios, Benalup-Casas Viejas, Benaocaz, El Bosque, Castellar de la Frontera, Jerez de la Frontera, Jimena de la Frontera, Medina Sidonia, Prado del Rey, San José de el Valle, Ubrique and Cortes de la Frontera.

The natural park is almost entirely populated by dense forests where most important advantage is the production of Cork.
alcornoques tarifaApart from the Oaks there is also the typical Mediterranean vegetation with Oaks, Oaks, cypress trees and scrub. Numerous streams run through the mountainous terrain of the Park, which is at the same time influenced by the climate of the seas and winds. This creates in this Mediterranean forest microclimate moist and warm throughout the year, which provides an ideal habitat for ferns, mosses and mushrooms.
The highest points in the Park are the peak of the peaks and the peak of the tank near Alcalá de los Gazules.

 

The natural park is also a safe habitat for many animals.
Birdwatchers can observe a large number of native and migratory birds, but also a host of insects such as butterflies and dragonflies, reptiles, amphibians and mammals such as Roe deer, foxes, otters, weasels, genets, Polecats and Wildcats can be seen in these forests. On the existence of Lynx are divided opinions, since there is no physical evidence of their existence in the Cork forests, but there are several species nearby between Cádiz and Huelva Doñana National Park and in the Sierra Morena in Seville.

Forests are equipped with numerous trails.
parque natural alcornocalesMost can be used without permission, but for some a Park permit is necessary. Permits are available at the office of the Natural Park in the number (0034) 856 58 75 08. In the hiking section you can find a detailed list of paths.

The region that is now a Natural Park, has been inhabited by man since its beginnings. So sites belonging to Neanderthals, there are Palaeolithic and Neolithic cave paintings in caves in the area.