Parque Natural Sierras de Cazorla, Segura y las Villas is a natural park in the eastern / north eastern part of the province of Jaén, Spain. It has mountains, valleys, ravines, rivers, lake and forests; the views are to die for. The park has an area of almost 2,100 square kilometres. It is the largest protected area in Spain, and the second largest in Europe.
The city of Cazorla lies at the south western end of the park. It is generally known as the gateway or entry point to the park. Cazorla makes an excellent base for exploring the area. For information about Cazorla, photos and video, see this article.
There are also many walks that you can take directly from Cazorla. Anything from a gentle stroll, to a long steep uphill slog (and just about every walk I have ever done from Cazorla, was uphill). All the walks have two things in common, wonderful scenery and jaw-dropping views. The following are probably my three favourite walks from Cazorla. I do them regularly, most years and never tire of them!
The following videos are to give you an idea of the wonderful scenery; they are not route directions. If you want walk directions or GPS co-ordinates, there are plenty on Wikiloc.
A walk above Cazorla
If you head east from Cazorla (I usually start from the Plaza de la Corredera) you eventually come to a narrow mountain road. This hardly has any traffic, so makes a nice easy walk. Head south and there are three miradors (scenic viewpoints). The views are fantastic.
Rio Cerezuelo – Cazorla
An easy and fairly short walk along the river Cerezuelo. Historically the river was the main source of water for Cazorla. It supplied irrigation water, powered the flour mills and was even used to produce electricity.
The walk starts from the Plaza de Santa Maria. Walk past the cathedral ruins (on your left) heading towards the Castillo de la Yedra. You will soon see signs for the walk. The walk is along a well maintained footpath with several wooden bridges, which criss-cross the river as you head upstream. Its a very enjoyable walk with an abundance of lush green vegitation, crystal clear water and rock pools.
This walk is about 20km, the exact distance depending on the route you take (there are several). Allow plenty of time, take water with you and be prepared for a long steady climb. The paths are good, so its not difficult. But what a gem this walk is! The views along the route are fantastic, but they are even better once you get to el Chorro! There is a vertical cliff face with a stunning water fall (about 70m). This dries up in the summer, so best to visit in winter or spring.
If you are a bird watcher, you’ll love it. There is even a hide there! I am not a bird expert, but I believe you can see common swifts, Egyptian vultures, peregrine falcons and griffon vultures. I find the griffon vulture the most facinating. Many have nests in the cliff face, and if you want to photograph a griffon vulture, this is the place!