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Gorbeia Natural Park


The Gorbeia Natural Park, located at the foot of Mount Gorbea, contains landscapes of great beauty. You can enjoy seeing the local flora and fauna in their natural habitat. A visit to the Oro Sanctuary and the Gujuli waterfall are well worth the trouble, as are the local crafts workshops that produce a range of different products.

This Natural Park is located between the provinces of Vizcaya and Álava, around Mount Gorbeia, and is part of the mountain range that forms a watershed between the Cantabrian Sea and the Mediterranean. Due to its great height, Gorbeia Natural Park has a typical mountain climate and acts like a huge barrier stopping the damp winds from the Bay of Biscay. It is largely responsible for the major climactic differences between its north and south faces.

Gorbeia is a traditional reference point for Basque mountaineers. The attraction of peaks such as Gorbeiagane, Aldamin, Oketa, Berretin... , the quality and spectacular nature of its landscapes, together with the strategic situation of this mountain range which is close to a number of neighbouring population centres, have made Gorbeia one of the most frequented mountain ranges. The tracks and paths of this mountain range are used by hykers, mountain bike enthusiasts and horse riders. These activities are made much easier by the existence of a network of signposted paths in the Park, in addition to the GR and PR designed by the Mountain Federations.

Inside the Natural Park or on its edge, there are a large number of well-equipped recreational areas. Pagomakurre is the main one on the Bizkaia side, while on the Alava side there is the recreational area of the Baias Centre, with the recently created Parketxe or Park Reception Centre.

These rugged mountains are crowned by steep limestone cliffs or by the rounded silica peaks of the provinces of Alava. The many rivers and streams in the Park have sculpted deep, craggy ravines. The uppermost reaches of these streams run through areas of open grazing land and heather and only on the steep mountainsides are their banks covered with trees and other vegetation, dense woods of beech, Pyrenean oak, chestnuts - as well as plantations of conifers.

The great diversity and extension of these woodlands has allowed the reintroduction of deer into the Gorbeia Natural Park. There are large numbers of these animals distributed in the Alava sector and today they hae become an emblem of the wildlife in the Park.



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