Tripadvisor has, for the first time, announced its Traveller’s Choice list of the best National Parks in Europe. 2020 was the year travellers sought out nature in abundance, and these parks delivered. Spain has no less than three of its national parks in Europe’s top 10.
Traveller’s Choice Best of the Best National Parks – Europe
Every year, TA collates and analyses all the reviews, ratings, and saves that travellers share from across the globe. From that they spotlight the very best. The Travellers’ Choice Best of the Best awards celebrates them all.
Spain’s National Parks score highly
Both Spain and the United Kingdom rated extremely highly with three national parks each making it into the top 10. The UK’s Yorkshire Dales took top spot with Spain’s Sierra de Grazalema NP, Sierra Nevada NP and Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche NP taking sixth, seventh and ninth spots respectively. All three parks can be found in the region of Andalucia.
Sierra de Grazalema NP
A UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Sierra de Grazalema NP in Cádiz is an incredible ecological landscape. Visitors can marvel at the deep gorges, limestone cliffs and 1,300 different species of flora. There are a number of cave systems, the largest of which – the Hundidero-Gato complex – has prehistoric origins.
Birdwatchers will delight in sightings of Bonelli’s eagles and the endangered Egyptian vulture. For other wildlife, expect to find genets, mountain goats, and otters.
Sierra Nevada NP
The largest of Spain’s national parks, Sierra Nevada is a dream for any outdoor enthusiast. The rugged terrain of gorges and mountains are excellent for hiking, while icy pools are great for cooling summer dips. There are also plenty of tunnels and caves to explore.
For the not so adventurous, there’s lots to see in the pretty villages dotted through Las Alpujarras. Granada’s famous Alhambra castle and fortress is also close by.
Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche NP
Part of the Sierra Morena mountain system, this protected landscape has it all: high peaks and rocky cliffs, quaint villages, and wooded valleys shaded by Mediterranean oak and chestnut groves. There’s a system of paths, allowing visitors to explore on foot taking in the grasses and colourful wildflowers.
Don’t miss the local gastronomy either, with Iberian black pork and wild mushrooms making some delicious dishes.