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Cap de Creus Nature Park

Levantine Sheawater, Mediterranean Shag, and Stripped Dolfin © Cristian Jensen

See photos from Cap de Creus Nature Park

Cap de Creus is the most oriental part of the Pyrenees, formed by the Serra de Roda and the ‘Cap’ itself, which end diving into the Mediterranean Sea near the French-Spanish border. From the highest point (S. Salvador de Verdera at 670 m) to sea level the park holds a large variety of landscapes, yet the typical Mediterranean flora predominates. However, habitats like small riparian forests, cork forests, rocky areas, awesome cliffs, and farmland, are also found within the park.

For birdwatchers, there are many chances for great experiences with typical and interesting species from these habitats. Some of the birds stay all year round and others only stay during winter or in the breeding season. Furthermore, you can also experience the huge migration show: Cap de Creus is an excellent place to see the birds recovering from their challenging travel and searching for a good place to settle, whether in autumn or in spring.

During the whole year you can discover the Cap de Creus and its birds. The hot summer season is maybe the worst season to visit the place, and getting up early in the morning is advisable. Only when the Tramuntana (the northern wind) becomes really strong is it not recommendable to visit the park, although you can always find some kind of shelter.

Interesting birds likely to be found at Cap de Creus throughout the year are Mediterranean and Balearic Shearwaters, Cory’s Shearwater, Bonelli’s Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, Thekla Lark, Black Wheatear (really rare and close to disappearing), Blue Rock Thrush, Sardinian and Dartford Warblers, Rock Sparrow, and many more.

The breeding birds include Pallid Swift, Red-rumped Swallow, Short-toed Lark (rare), Tawny Pipit, Black-eared Wheatear, Rock Thrush, Spectacled, Subalpine and Orphean Warblers, Woodchat Shrike, and Ortolan Bunting.

Wintering birds include Razorbill, Gannet, Great Skua, Alpine Accentor, and some years also Wallcreeper.

Geology and botany (with remarkable endemism) are two other things to pay attenction to in this area. Obviously, insects in these Mediterranean landscapes are also both plentiful and important. Humans have been here since many, many years ago, leaving several megalithic monuments, Roman monasteries and emblematic places like Cadaqués and Port Lligat, which captivated artists like Salvador Dalí.

The area is located just 50 kilometres from Girona Airport, and less than two hours from the capital of the Catalan Region, Barcelona!

A full-day trip, or - even better - a two-day trip, will be enough to fully explore this Nature Park.

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