Mariola Sierra Nature Park

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The Sierra Mariola is basically a limestone massif located on the borders of the towns of Agres, Alfafara, Alcoi, Banyeres de Mariola, Bocairent, and Cocentaina. Because of its altitude and size, it offers a wide range of landscape. As a catchment area, its streams and springs feed the Vinalopó, Serpis and Barxell rivers. The sierra is rich in botanical attractions, growing numerous aromatic and medicinal herbs. It also has pine forests, sprinkled with occasional oaks, maples, ashes and yew trees. The Sinc ravine is a deep gorge leading into the sierra from Alcoi, providing spectacular rocky scenery. The peak of Montcabrer (1,390m) crowns the sierra and offers fine views over the surrounding mountains. The Mariola mountains were once a storehouse for snow and ice preserved in so-called neveras, or snow caves - with names like Gran, Don Miguel, l'Habitació, El Buitre - and later carried to towns in the La Costera and La Ribera areas. Various signposted trails (Long-Distance Hiking Route GR-7 and interconnected Short-Distance Hiking Routes) and two mountain shelters facilitate excursions around this area.

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