Spain for Nature Lovers: Must-Visit National Parks

Spain is often labelled as a holiday destination that has resorts, hotels, and great food – but this neglects the true beauty of the country’s nature. Spain is so vast that it has varied climates, from the rainy, green north to desert and cactus in the south. Spain also has both the Atlanticand the Mediterranean, with both France and Africa in naked eye’s view from either end of the mainland – not to mention the volcanic Canaries.

Wherever you are, there are mountains – that’s a given. Below is a list of the best national parks in Spain that will help capture the broad range of fauna and foliage that the country has to offer.

Los Picos de Europa National Park

Los Picos de Europa National Park features striking limestone formations and a tonne of biodiversity. It’s generally known for its dramatic scenery, which is located in the north, with pointed peaks and deep valleys.

One of the highlights is the Cares Trail, a truly scenic hike offering great views of the surrounding gorges. This trail is a favorite among hikers for its well-maintained paths. The park is also home to rare species like the Cantabrian brown bear and the Iberian wolf, which roams around the more remote areas. Birdwatchers can spot golden eagles and griffon vultures soaring above the cliffs, too.

Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park

Ordesa y Monte Perdido National Park does a great job of captivating its visitors with its deep canyons. The park is a sanctuary for diversity, including bearded vultures and Pyrenean chamois.


Birdwatching is also popular here, with many species inhabiting the park’s varied habitats. This is the one to visit as a rock climber, where you can take on the steep cliffs.

Doñana National Park

Doñana National Park is a unique picture of wetlands and dunes. Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site, it’s a haven for birdwatchers, with hundreds of bird species passing through its diverse habitats. Doñana is home to the endangered Iberian lynx, which is one of the world’s rarest cats. Visitors can explore on guided tours, which is the best way to learn about the park’s ecological importance.

Teide National Park

Teide National Park has volcanic landscapes and is dominated by Mount Teide, Spain’s highest peak. The park’s unique geological features and endemic plant species make it a surreal, otherworldly environment.

Stargazing is a popular activity here, thanks to the clear skies and high altitude. The cable car ride to Mount Teide’s summit provides breathtaking views and a quick descent. Teide National Park’s striking volcanic scenery makes it one of the most unique national parks in Europe.

Sierra Nevada National Park

Sierra Nevada National Park boasts a variety of ecosystems, from snowy peaks to Mediterranean forests. It has a lot of outdoor activities, with opportunities for both winter and summer sports.


The park is home to the Spanish ibex and golden eagles, among other bucket list wildlife. In winter, it transforms into a ski resort, but in summer, visitors can enjoy hiking and mountain biking.

Spain’s national parks are exceptional. There’s more diversity than they get credit for, and each park presents unique opportunities for spotting rare species and incredible views.