Countries<Spain<Andalucía [Andalusia]<Sevilla< Parque Nacional de Doñana

Parque Nacional de Doñana(Sevilla)

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Doñana is a meeting point of strong and varied natural dynamics that has favoured the formation of a multiplicity of habitats and ecosystems thanks to the combined action of continental and marine agents. For this reason, the Doñana National Park, located in the wide Gulf of Cadiz in the Atlantic Ocean, in the provinces of Huelva and Seville, offers the visitor a beautiful and attractive mosaic of environments and landscapes, constituting the largest ecological reserve in Europe. It owes its estuary character to the mouth of the Guadalquivir River, which articulates the orography and landscape of a large part of southern Spain.

In this context, where water in its various manifestations is the modelling element par excellence, the great ecosystems of Doñana come together: 40 kilometres of virgin beaches and impressive fronts of mobile dunes, coastal forests of pine, juniper and juniper trees, cork oak groves and Mediterranean scrubland, lagoons and the marshes. The latter is the most important wetland ecosystem in terms of its size and representativeness. It is one of the few protected areas in the world where representative examples of the excellent quality and state of conservation of these habitats converge in its more than 50,000 hectares.

The relevance of this protected area also lies in the large number of species it is home to, many of which are emblematic and endangered. Doñana is one of the essential natural refuges for the conservation of endangered species such as the Iberian lynx, the most endangered feline in Europe, the imperial eagle, the marbled teal or the white-headed duck. There are also numerous species of birds of prey and endemic plant species and others that are highly endangered, such as the coastal juniper. Finally, it is an irreplaceable enclave on the migratory routes for hundreds of thousands of birds (ardeids, waders, ducks, waders, etc.), whose survival depends on the good health of these wetlands, which make Doñana the largest wintering site in Western Europe.

It is also essential to mention the traditional practices for the use of resources that are preserved as important local values: the hunting "preserves" (former royal hunting grounds), forestry, livestock, fish, shellfish, beekeeping or pineapple... Finally, Doñana is home to one of the most popular religious events in Europe, the Pilgrimage of El Rocío, an emblematic model of the link between spirituality and nature, which makes this park a Sacred Natural Space.

For all these reasons, in 1994 the Doñana National Park was inscribed on the World Heritage List.

Image of Parque Nacional de Doñana