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The Sierras de Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas, Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas, Landscapes, Andalusia
The Sierras de Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas

The largest protected area in Spain, declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO

© venemama/123RF
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Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas Spain
By Amy Adejokun Amy Adejokun Section editor

Discover Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

This is the largest protected natural area in Spain, located on the eastern side of the Jaen province at the border with the provinces of Granada and Albacete. It is an unusual natural park in that over 90,000 people live here more or less permanently. It was declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 1983 before being named a Special Protection Area (SPA) for birds by the European Union in 1988. The landscape of this mountainous region is of breathtaking beauty and is made even more spectacular by its high altitude, culminating at 2,039m with the Alto de la Cabrilla peak.
Water is also of paramount importance in this region, where many rivers find their source whilst others run freely through it. The source of the Guadalquivir is some 350m above sea-level at Cańada de las Fuentes, in the communes of El Pozo and Quesada. The source of the Borosa River, in the Lago de las Aguas Negras lake near Barranco del Infierno, is undoubtedly a more spectacular sight. Its geographical location also means you'll be able to admire the Salto de los Órganos, the most beautiful waterfall in the region.
With regards to flora and fauna, the region is home to over 2,170 higher plant species, including the Cazorla violet, as well as the tallest and biggest yews in Europe. During your visit you might want to challenge yourself to identify the biggest yew on record, which is approximately 2,000 years old and some 6m in diameter. There are also 140 different bird varieties here, including the recently reintroduced Bearded Vulture (Quebrantahuesos), a bird of prey with a huge wing span and a majestic flight.

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Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas , Spain
Linarejos Waterfall

Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

© Siepmann / age fotostock
Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas , Spain
Houses in the Sierra de Cazorla

Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

© Ana del Castillo
Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas , Spain
Lagoons in the Sierra de Cazorla

Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

© Ana del Castillo
Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas , Spain
A view of the Sierra de Cazorla

Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

© Siepmann / age fotostock
Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas , Spain
The Cazorla Mountains

Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y Las Villas

© Juan José Pascual / age fotostock
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