Visits to the Doñana National Park
Doñana is a land of contrasts made up of a mosaic of different landscapes, home to a wide variety of animal and plant species. Its size and strategic location make this nature area an important winter destination for migratory birds. Doñana is one of the most important wetland areas in Europe.
The Doñana Nature Area, comprising its Nature Park and National Park, is a true paradise for ornithologists. At the beginning of autumn and throughout the winter thousands of goose and duck species can be seen here following their arrival from Northern Europe. In spring and summer, storks, herons and swallows, amongst other species, arrive from Africa in search of food and milder weather.
Doñana is unique for its wide variety of different landscapes. El Coto del Rey, El Abalario and El Pinar de la Algaida are home to large stone pine woods and dense Mediterranean scrub that provide a suitable habitat for the emblematic Iberian lynx and various birds of prey such as the golden eagle.
The area also contains the El Asparillo system of fossil dunes, which runs parallel to its coastline. Overlooking the beach itself is the stunning El Asperillo Cliff, a uniquely beautiful natural phenomenon which has been declared a Natural Monument.
To the north and south of the nature area lies another of the attractions which comprise the amazing jigsaw puzzle that is Doñana: the shallows of the Gallega, Lucio del Cangrejo and Marismas de Bonanza Marshes. These areas provide feeding and breeding grounds for countless bird species. Visitors can enjoy the large, horizontal expanse of the landscape, the local birdlife and the spectacular flight of flamingos.
They have been occupied and moulded by Man throughout history, and the local people still engage in traditional activities like beekeeping, pine cone gathering and agriculture. It is even possible to find some charcoal burners still active in the park, although certain trades, including charcoal production, are gradually dying out. Doñana¿s horse breeding tradition has survived in the event known as the "Saca de las Yeguas", held every June in the village of Almonte. This is also the site of the Rocío Pilgrimage, one of the most famous in Spain.