Spain’s third highest mountain range after the Pyrenees and Sierra Nevada, the Picos de Europa is a spectacular region of limestone peaks, ridges and deep valleys. Every year, more than 50 million people visit Spain, which has the second-most United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Sites of any country. Located on the Iberian Peninsula, Spain was part of the Roman empire until the Muslim invasion of 711. In the 15th century, the Reconquest reestablished Christian rule. This storied past has left a tangible multicultural heritage that makes Spain a world-famous tourist destination.
A varied landscape of dramatic rocky terrain and lush lower valleys with meadows covered with beautiful wild flowers in spring, this area is also known as ‘Green Spain’. Its terrain, tranquility and inaccessibility make the Picos a walker’s paradise. Though rarely seen, bears, wolves and boars all still survive in this stunning wilderness. Chamois, Griffon vultures, Golden eagles and many other species are regularly spotted here offering an additional and fascinating dimension to this area and trip.
The Cares Gorge (Garganta del Cares) is enormous, outstandingly beautiful in its upper reaches, and unmissable if you are anywhere near the Picos de Europa. The river Cares has carved an improbable gorge through the heart of the huge limestone Picos range, dividing its Western and Central massifs. This chasm is a mile deep in places, with vast rock walls on both sides.
Ascent to Pandescura peak with superb views of the Western Massif.
Classic Cares Gorge walk.
Walk up to the Pandebano Col and continue up to the summit of Peña Mainone, one of the classic viewpoints of the Picos.
Walk up to the twin summits of Mancondiu offering fantastic views of the Central and Eastern Massifs.
End Arenas de Cabrales.