Hi my name is Star and I have been lucky enough to call Gran Alacant my home for over 8 years now. My 6 year old daughter Ashlee and I are often “Out & About” enjoying the local attractions and culture in this part of Spain. Over the next few months I will be sharing some of our experiences with you to encourage you to go “Out & About” yourselves and maybe learn a little bit about this beautiful place we call home.

This month we wanted to talk about La Mata and Torrevieja Lagunas and vineyards which are located about 40 minutes South of Gran Alacant along the N332. “El parquet Natural de las Lagunas de La Mata y Torrevieja” is it´s official name and it covers a total area of 3,700 hectares.

We have visited this Natural Park a few times with friends and it really is a beautiful setting for a nice walk or bike ride with plenty of places to stop and admire the views of the two lakes or enjoy a picnic. The two lakes are connected via a canal and are artificially linked to the sea. They are used in the salt production process with the La Mata Laguna acting as a heating pool and the salt itself is harvested from the Torrevieja laguna.

In 1989 these lagunas were given the ZEPA (zonas de especial protección para las aves) status, this zone is designed to protect the birds from any development or building in their environment. To help to preserve this area of natural beauty and protect the wildlife, birds, flaura and fauna most of the parkland is not accessible but there are two walking and one cycling route which you can enjoy.

The visitor centre, which is open from 0930 – 1400 Mon – Fri and 0900 – 1300 on Saturdays has all of the information you need about the ecosystems and the flora and fauna that can be found in this natural area. You will also find the start of the two walks and one cycle route here. The 1.4km “Ruta del Vino” walking route takes approximately 40 minutes and is a nice walk to enjoy the different views as you go past the La Mata Laguna and through the vineyards.

The “Yellow Route” is a gentle 5.2km walk. On this route you will be able to see all the varied ecosystems and there are various viewing points to enable visitors to observe the different wildlife and birds. In some areas there are raised boardwalks which give great access for wheelchair users.

There is also a 5.2km “Red Route” bike trail. This is not a difficult route, with only one fairly high climb, it has been designed to offer good panoramic views across the laguna but also keeps cyclists away from nesting birdlife.

For more information contact the Visitor Centre on: 966 920 404. Happy New Year!!!

Star & Ashlee