The Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park will soon be declared National Park.Discover the characteristics of this particular area in Malaga province.
The 300 square-kilometre-wide Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park is located in the middle of Malaga province, being only 58 the kilometres that separate it from the capital city on the west. This Biosphere Reserve borders with the Costa del Sol region and the area of Ronda and it provides spectacular landscapes to twelve towns of the province: Alozaina, Casarabonela, Tolox, El Burgo, Yunquera, Monda, Guaro, Istán, Ojén, Serrato, Ronda and Parauta.
Just like the other natural parks in Andalucia, the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park is also home to protected mammal and bird species, such as ibexes and eagles. However, its most peculiar feature is the rare Spanish-fir woods that populate the mountains of the park. The Spanish name for this type of plant is “pinsapo”, whose most famous representative is the centuries-year-old Pinsapo de Las Escaleretas. This enormous tree was declared Natural Monument in 2001, thanks to its impressive dimensions (height of 26 metres and a five mt-wide trunk).
Furthermore, and maybe the most interesting fact, know that the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park is in the process of receiving the “National Park” nomenclature, thanks to the unique flora and fauna it welcomes. This classification will be an addition to the two Andalusian National Parks of Doñana and the Sierra Nevada.
Where does its name come from?
The name “de las Nieves”, literally “of the snow”, comes from the wells located in the mountains, where the winter snow was kept. In summer, the snow used to be distributed among the towns of the province.
Must-see’s in the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park
This Natural Park is full of hideouts, spectacular landscapes and unique features that are worth a visit. Of the Pinsapo de las Escaleretas, we have already talked.
Many other locations await you. For example, if you are a speleology lover, don’t miss out on the Sima GEMS, the deepest karstic area in Andalucia and one of Europe’s most important ones. The only access is in the town of Tolox, under the 1,919 mt-high peak of Torrecilla.
This mountain is the highest in Malaga province, whose top you can reach thanks to various routes. Among them, choose to engage in the one starting from the 1285 mt-high Los Quejigales Area, where you will have the possibility to spot the Virgin de las Nieves, located in a cave in the Cerro del Pilar. Or else, the route of La Cañada de las Ánimas, which is as difficult as the first one; and the Route from Tolox, where you will reach a height of 1,850 metres in just 15 km, making it the most arduous one.
Another (view)point you must stop by is the Mirador del Guardia Forestal. Located on the northern side of the Park, at 900 metres above sea level, it offers breathtaking views of the river Turón, the fir-woods of the mountains and the white town of El Burgo. Also known as “Monumento Natural Mirador Cuenca del Río Turón”, it owes its name to the Forest Rangers, just like the 1977-statue located on the top of the viewpoint.
Lastly, don’t miss out on the Tajo de Caína. This 100 mt-high gorge is located on the east side of the Park, and it owes its name to a woman, who was said to be as devilish as Cain and who was thrown from the top of the mountain by the Spanish Inquisition. Be careful with this one, since the vertigos and slips may sneak up on you, although the views provided are truly one of a kind.
A complete list of the hiking routes in the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park is available here.
And if you want to take a dip into the waters of Sierra de las Nieves, know that the Natural Park is provided with a few waterholes, like those of River Guadalmedina, Río Verde, Río de Los Caballos and the artificial waterhole in El Burgo.
How to get to the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park
The easiest access to the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park is through the town of Yunquera. Take the A-357 from Malaga towards west, and follow the route through the A-354 and A-366. When you pass by Yunquera, turn on the left at the roundabout. You will find yourself in Calle Camino de Los Arbolitos. Follow the road, and you will get to the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park.
Places to stay in the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park
If you long for an accommodation after discovering the beauties and landscapes of the Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park, you’ve come to the right place. Just click here and discover the best villas in this area of Malaga province. All their comforts accompany some of the most magnificent views you’ll ever have the pleasure to enjoy.
The Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park will soon be National Park. Wait no more and discover it now!
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