Eighteen percent of Andalucia is protected land, the main classifications
of which are National and Nature Parks. Fifty percent of Andalucia is mountainous and one third is above an altitude of 600 metres, including some extensive
plateaus, and 46 peaks reach more than 1,00 metres. The Sierra Nevada mountain range (5) has two peaks, Mulhacen and Valeta, which are higher than 3,400 metres.
The Guadalquivir River, one of the longest in Spain, runs between two mountainous areas, the Sierra Morena mountains (which contain the Natural Parks
15, 16 and 17) to the north and the Betica ranges to the south. The
river, whose source is in the Sierra de Cazorla Natural Park(10) in Jean Province in the east and estuary in the western marshlands on the Atlantic coast of the
Donana National Park (18), has created a fertile valley running through Andalucia´s territory.
Andalucia is situated at the meeting point where the Mediterranean Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean, at the Staights of Gibraltar, and Europe gives way to Africa.
The proximity between the two continents encourages migrating birds to collect together in vast flocks whilst waiting for good weather conditions to assist their
outward and inward journeys.
The diversity of the topography and terrain allows many species of wildlife, some endangered, to exist and flourish in the protected terrestrial and marine reserves.
The map above shows the positon of the parks and below you can click on each for more information.