Fuentes del Narcea, Degana e Ibias
Covering almost 230 square miles, the park’s landscapes vary gradually the further you explore. For instance, the steep and rugged Cangas del Narcea contrasts with the serenity of the River Narcea, which offers good spots for trout- and salmon-fishing from its tributaries. It’s known as a special protection area for birdlife, so bring your binoculars and creep quietly. You might also catch sight of the Cantabrian brown bear.
Picos de Europa
Translated as Peaks of Europe, these limestone mountains have been formed into what they are today by glacial action over the centuries carving out an incomparable panorama of karst peaks. Tackle either the tall summits or travel underground to some of the world’s deepest caves. The highest peak, Torre de Cerredo, stretches 2,650 metres up, while the path through Torca del Cerro reaches lows of 1,589 metres below sea level.
Granted biosphere status in 2007, this area has a breadth of tree varieties including holly, yew, ash, wild cherry, walnut and pine, as well as shrubs like broom, heather and strawberry trees. Wild boar and foxes are a common sight, while honey buzzards and kestrels stalk the skies. Canoeing, horseriding and caving are all on offer.
Las Ubinas-La Mesa Nature Park
As well as remains from the hill fort era, you’ll find more than half of Asturias’ plant species here. A third of this park is covered with forest, and Cantabrian wildlife abounds – find native brown bear, birds of prey, wolves, otters and the Pyrenean desman (a nocturnal shrew-like mammal) all within its expansive confines.
Redes Nature Park
Declared a biosphere reserve by Unesco in 2001, this park is populated with beech and oak forest as well as more than 50 species of mammal and 130 bird species. The landscape is characterised by rugged terrain, watercourses and narrow valleys.