Baza National Park
Andalucia has many areas of natural beauty and northeast of Granada province you will find more than 53 hectares of natural park – Sierra de Baza Natural Park. Mainy pine-clad, the higher ground is more barren and reaches more than 2,000 metres above sea level. Interestingly, dotted across this park you will find various abandoned villages and farms, which highlight how this population has steadily declined.
Mainly pine-clad, there are many steep slopes, jagged limestone peaks and superb views from Santa Barbara, the highest point at 2,271m above sea level.
Flora and fauna
Although pine woodland dominates, roughly 100 plant species have been found in the park. There are holm oaks, gall oaks and junipers along with Mediterranean scrubland, some berries and aromatic herbs.
Golden eagles, Egyptian vultures, kestrels and eagle owls are just some of the bigger birds catalogued in the park. Crested larks and red-legged partridges can be found in the agricultural low-lands and woodpeckers and turtle doves live in the wooded areas.
There are also more than 30 species of mammals along with game, reptiles, amphibians and unique to the region: Baza butterflies (eucloe bazae).
There are seven signposted walks varying in difficulty that will allow you to take in the breathtaking scenery and wildlife as well as panoramic views.
Hotels and self-catering cottages can be found in Baza and even cave houses are available to rent. There are also plenty of rural villages under an hour away if you want to truly experience Spanish life in the mountains.
You can camp for free at the picnic areas of Tablas and Fuente del Pino from November to May, but you need to apply for permission from the Environment Department in Granada. There is also an organised campsite in Freila.