This protected area consists of a large cluster of high limestone peaks that holds within it a range of ecosystems from sheer and colourful cliff faces to deep lush valleys, rich green forests to bleak white scree slopes. There are around 20 peaks above 1000m creating an impressively sculpted landscape, the highest being El Torreón at 1654m (5426 feet) which command fabulous views across the mountains and over to the plains of Cadiz province. Continue reading The Grazalema Natural Park
My favorite bird in the Sierra de Grazalema is the Griffon vulture. majestic and with a surprisingly complex lifestyle they are fascinating to observe at any time of year.
Visible all year in the natural Park of Grazalema this bird is larger than an eagle, with a wingspan of up to 260 cm (8.53 Ft). In flight, their wings are broad, with the primaries (finger-like feathers) usually clearly visible; the tail is short, and the neck retracted. It has buff brown coloured plumage on the back, stomach and the anterior band of the wings, while the rest of the wing feathers and tail are dark brown. The head and long neck are covered with white down and there is a distinctive collar of long feathers. On adults the bill is yellow and collar white, whilst on juveniles the bill is grey and collar pale brown. They feed on carrion, most of the time in a state of decay and at other times in an initial stage (especially large mammals). The carcasses left out by farmers are also an important part of the diet of these birds.
Its hard to believe that a place in Andalucia with around 300 days of blues skies and sunshine every year can also lay claim to being the “wettest place in Spain”
What makes Grazalema the wettest place in Spain?
The Sierra de Grazalema has a special microclimate. We are in a place whose topography dictates it to be the rainiest site in Spain because it is the first high area which the humid sea winds hit after coming off the Atlantic. Winds driven across these lowlands warm up and then rise abruptly on meeting the mountain range, causing a cooling effect and cloud formation with precipitation. The natural inclines then guide water to flow rapidly into streams, rivers and arroyos (seasonally flowing streams that are dry during summer). Lower down this water is being reserved in man-made reservoirs to prevent its instant loss from the area.
Find out more about the weather in Grazalema and a host of other nature and wildlife information at the website of Wildside Holidays
Its getting hot in the Sierra de Grazalema with temperatures above 35C… Still it is a paradise. have a look at Sues latest article about flowering plants in Grazalema during the month of July.
There will be a marked difference between the first and second parts of this month as plants succumb to the heat and set their seeds. Areas that have held high moisture levels during the winter and spring will now come into their own with ribbons of bright pink Oleanders mapping the watercourses with Penny Royal and Apple Mint accompanying them. Climbing higher, aromatic herbs tucked into rock crevices in the mountains will be attracting bees and butterflies with their nectar rich blooms.