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Wildlife observation

Sierra de Guadarrama, a birdwatching site 

Located only 45 minutes from Madrid, the Sierra de Guadarrama is a region of great value in terms of nature and landscape, very diverse and rich from an ecological standpoint. Its variety of ecosystems provides our territory with the necessary ingredients to enjoy nature through birdwatching, the sighting of a large number of different species being possible.

The conservation of the Sierra de Guadarrama and its natural values are ensured by several means. Much of its territory is included in the Sierra de Guadarrama National Park, declared as such in June 2013.

A wide extension of this territory has been integrated since 1985 into the Cuenca Alta del Manzanares Regional Park, the first regional park in Spain.

In 1993, UNESCO decided to include it in the World Network of Biosphere Reserves ((WNBR).

Part of this park forms part of the Sites of Community Importance (SCIs), of the Natura 2000 Network, which are currently known as the Special Areas of Conservation (SACs). The Sierra de Guadarrama also has a Natural Monument and several dams and wetlands.

 This mountain range has summits of over 2,000 m such as La Maliciosa, La Bola del Mundo or La Najarra, areas of mountain scrub, rocky areas, meadows and ash groves, mountainous slopes of pine and oak forests, Mediterranean forests of cork oaks, wetlands, and reservoirs. It hosts a variety of valuable species such as the black vulture, the golden eagle, the wallcreeper, the common rock thrush, the bluethroat, the red-backed shrike or the citril finch, among others.

Tree of Félix Rodríguez de la Fuente Route

The route of Felix Rodriguez de la Fuente tree is a beautiful natural route along the right bank of the dam, an area of ​​high ecological value, surrounded by a forest of ash and holm oaks. The tour has impressive views over the dam and, depending on the time of year, you can watch many different birds in their natural habitat, how they eat, how they interact, etc.

  • Starting point: Manzanares El Real Tourist Office 
  • Length: 6,5 km 
  • Level of difficulty: Easy
  • Total ascend: Insignificant

Ornithological routes through Miraflores de la Sierra

 Miraflores de la Sierra has a great variety of very well-conserved ecosystems that boost the presence of numerous bird species.

Proof of this is that part of the municipality is considered a protected site and designated as a Special Protection Area for Birds (ZEPA). It is also part of the recently created Sierra de Guadarrama National Park. 

 The wealth, abundance and diversity of birds in this environment is made evident by the 150 species recorded in the Miraflores de la Sierra municipality.

Route from Ermita de San Blas to Pinar de Aguirre


  • Starting point: Ermita de San Blas
  • Length (approx.): 6.000 m (one way)
  • Level of Difficulty: Easy
  • Total ascend: 240 m.

Route from Fuente del Cura to Parada del Rey

  • Starting point:  Fuente del Cura recreation area
  • Lenth (approx.): 7.000 m
  • Level of difficulty: Baja
  • Total ascend: 324 m.

High mountain bushes and La Najarra summit


  • Starting point: Ermita de San Blas
  • Length (approx.): 5.000 m (one way)
  • Level of difficulty: Easy
  • Total ascend: 450 m. 

Routes along cattle trails


Below there are some routes Vías Pecuarias de Madrid offers, which pass through different ecosystems where you can observe a great diversity of species.


Routa from Collado Mediano to Miaccum archaelogical site 


  • Starting point: San Ildefonso Church
  • Length: 10.500 m
  • Level of difficulty: Easy
  • Total ascend: 120 m.

Walking on the Santillana Reservoir Shore

  • Starting point: Manzanares El Real
  • Length: 4.100 m (one way)
  • Level of difficulty: Baja
  • Total ascend: insignificant

Walking to La Pedriza along La Camorza gorge


  • Starting point: Manzanares El Real
  • Length: 4.000 m (one way)
  • Level of difficulty: Easy
  • Total ascend: 215 m.