Natural spaces in Zaragoza

The rivers and their natural landscapes make up the fundamental of the natural environment of the city of Zaragoza. The riverside sotos, more and more scarce, keep treasures to discover just ten minutes from the center of the city. Starting from the Macanaz grove, which occupies the left bank of the Ebro between the bridges of Santiago and La Almozara, the city offers places of great interest such as the Soto de Cantalobos, on the right bank, past the Las Fuentes neighborhood, which Is a redoubt of what they were the riverside sotos, authentic forests formed to the future of the river and accustomed to floods and droughts

Precisely these floods and droughts were responsible for the creation of one of the most interesting landscapes of Zaragoza: the gallos. It is called the arms that leaves the river after a flood and that separate from the main channel becoming lakes that are maintained due to the input of groundwater. Zaragoza has two areas of great value: the galleys of Juslibol, upstream of the city, in the rural district of the same name; And those of La Alfranca, El Burgo and La Cartuja. In these spaces it emphasizes the coastal vegetation and, above all, the birds that emphasize or inhabit in their contours.

Zaragoza has another landscape less known but of great ecological and environmental value: the steppe. Forests with little vegetation and rainfall that maintain botanical singularities and a characteristic fauna. The mountains of Castellar to the north and the flat of Cuarte and Maria to the south, next to the plateau of La Muela compose this interesting natural space close to the deserts.

And near Zaragoza

Stone Monastery

The Stone Monastery is a monastery in the Iberian system mountain ranges, near Nuévalos. The monastery was founded in 1194 by Alfonso II of Aragon, with thirteen Cistercian monks in an old castle next to the Piedra River, and was dedicated to St. Mary the White (Santa María la Blanca). On February 16, 1983, the entire complex was declared a national monument.

The area is surrounded by riverside forests, around the Piedra River, in one of the most biologically rich ecosystems, where many species of animals and plants are found in a relatively small space. On this channel of water is vertebra the whole ecosystem of the park. In the margins of rivers, streams and wetlands species such as alder, poplar, ash or elm are developed. Other tree species surround the banks, such as elms, walnuts and maples.

Lake of Gallocanta

The lake of Gallocanta is situated on a high continental plain at an altitude of just over 1,000m. It is a purely rain-fed lagoon which is largely dependent on autumn and spring rains if it is to maintain much water into the hot summer months.

Apart from being the most important single stopover site for migrating Cranes in Spain, it holds an interesting array of wetland birds when its water level permits, while its shores are visited by steppe land birds and raptors. The European Union has designated it as a Special Protection Area

El Moncayo

The Natural Park of Moncayo is a protected natural space located entirely in the province of Zaragoza.

The Sierra del Moncayo is located in the central sector of the Iberian Mountain Range, between the Duero and Ebro basins. The Moncayo summit or Pico de San Miguel is located on the northern slope, colder and more humid, with its 2,315 meters the maximum height of the Iberian System and one of the most relevant peaks of the Iberian Peninsula.

The vegetation cover of the magical mountain of Aragon reproduces in just 20 kilometers of length and along about 1,000 meters of unevenness the vegetal zonation that occurs between the Mediterranean countries to the South and the boreal of the North. Changes in vegetation related to height are extremely abrupt, especially between 800 and 1,000 meters, where species of Mediterranean and Northern Europe