Rising dramatically from the valley floors surrounding it, and reaching 753 metres above the sea level, Mount Montgó dominates the skyline for miles around. Its craggy cliffs are home to some of the most unusual flora and fauna in Spain. The mountain is also renowned for its rock formations, cliffs, caves and natural harbours.
Officially declared Natural Park, in 1987, the mountain is now a 2,150 hectares natural reserve, also including a coastal section that covers over 3 kilometres. The Reserve contains important archaeological finds such as cave paintings, Phoenician amphoras and the remains of Iberian settlements. The reserve runs almost parallel to the coastline, joining the coastal area via a flat area known as les Planes which ends at Cap de San Antoni.
The top of Montgó can be reached from from all the mountain’s sides. The excursion leads through numerous eco-systems, like stony terrain, croplands, pine forests and scrub land. The ascent takes about four hours and, at the summit of Montgó, the remains of the Casa de Biot, an Iberian settlement of the eighth century B.C, can be also found. From the summit, magnificent views open towards the coast and the sea, and you can even see the island of Ibiza, on clear days.
The site is renowned for its extraordinary wealth of flora, fauna and ecosystems. Home to over 650 species of flora, among which the kermes oak, the red lavender, maritime fennel, rockrose species, the Valencia rock violet, the rock scabious, the black sabine or the palmetto. The fauna is also spectacular, including rare birds, prey birds, and many reptiles and mammals.
The Montgó Nature Reserve has its own Interpretation Centre that provides detailed information on this privileged setting and organizes guided excursions year-round. The centre also houses an exhibition on the ecosystems of the Montgó and the Nature Reserve of the San Antonio Cape Sea Floor, main routes, traditional uses and diverse activities for visitors to the Nature Park.
Cover photo: Echiner via Wikipedia Commons