One of the most beautiful cities, in a country that is known for its beautiful cities, Valencia is a big place, packed with shopping, long parks like the Turia Park, the Las Fallas festival, food and everything else, But I wanted to highlight some of the more natural areas that you can find in the surrounding countryside. One of the best things about living in Spain is that places are really not well advertised or known outside of their communities, and so if you can find a beautiful, special place, you might just have it to yourself. Below I'll talk about a few amazing natural spaces that you will be itching to explore after seeing them.
Around 60 km north of the city of Valencia, the Serra Calderona National Park is one of the best places to visit from the city. The mountains here are part of a long range that stretches almost 39 km, and is often called La Calderona. The highest point in the area is El Gorgo at 907m high, and the views from here are remarkable. One of the reasons the natural scenery here is so undisturbed is due to the protection to olive-growing lands, and ensuring that both the natural and chemical balances are maintained. There are a lot of rules about what you can and can't do, but one of the things you will not be able to avoid doing is being amazed.
The park is around 60,000 hectares of natural beauty and walking routes, with much of the land dominated by pine forests and especially Aleppo Pine trees. My favourite thing about walking in pine forests is the smell, and although the land here if often quite dry, the presence of the two major rivers, the Palancia and the Turia (which mark the borders of the park) keep the park green and lush for most of the year.
A famous climbing spot, Chulilla is all about the steep cliff faces in these harsh but lush valleys. Climbers also flock here because there is bright sunshine and good temperatures for the vast majority of the year (averaging about 300 days of sun). More than likely, the only weather issues you will have could be that it's too hot! Chulilla is the name of the small mountain village that you will probably be based from, and this village is about a 50 minute drive from the city of Valencia.
The climbing routes here are not too extreme, and as long as you have ropes that are around 80m, you will be able to climb most of the routes. There are some overhangs and more extreme sections, but climbers searching for truly difficult and testing routes won't be entirely satisfied here, although the scenery should keep anyone happy!
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