This week we travel to the Valencian Community to discover two of connected protected areas: the Camí de Les Useres Natural Monument and the Penyagolosa Natural Park.
The former was declared to protect the path along which, every year since the 14th or 15th century, the residents of Les Useres have made a pilgrimage to the chapel of San Juan de Penyagolosa, sited in the core of the natural park of the same name. This 36 km route crosses mountain ranges parallel to the coast. The combination of calcareous and siliceous substrates, as well as the transition from Mediterranean to continental climate as we ascend, shelters a great biological diversity, with species typical of the Mediterranean mountain and others typical of Eurosiberian environments.
The Penyagolosa Natural Park, with its peak of 1,812 metres above sea level, second only to the Alto de las Barracas (Cerro Calderón), is considered the highest peak in the Valencian Community and a reference point for Valencian hiking, forming part of the lives of several generations of mountaineers.
In this protected area, religious devotion to the Camí dels Pelegrins, sports and the enjoyment of nature come together to make Penyagolosa a reference point deeply rooted in Valencian tradition.