The Paratge Natural d'Interés Nacional de l'Albera (created by the Law 3/1986, 10th March, by the Parliament of Catalonia), although it does not form part of the municipality of Roses, it is found only a short distance away, a fact which means an interested visitor can get there easily.
The Albera's PNIN consists of two parts: the western side (Requesens - Baussitges), with an important tree-covered area and great diversity of mid-mountain vegetation, and a drier, lower part (Sant Quirze de Colera - Balmeta), with a clear predominance of bushy vegetation.
Therefore, in the first zone we can find species of flora typical in humid environments, such as Holly (Ilex aquifolium, protected by law), the English Yew (Taxus baccata) and numerous orchids, whilst in the second zone species adapted to drought prevail, all lumped together in what is named the Mediterranean undergrowth, such as Spiny Broom (Calicotome spinosa) and Rock Rose (Cistus sp).
With regards to the fauna, it is worth pointing out an emblematic specie: Hermann's Tortoise (Testudo hermanni), as it is only found here and in the Creus cape and Garraf, where this specie was successfully reintroduced.
Other places of ecological interest of the Albera Hills
THE MAÇANA WOOD
This woodland, on the northern slope of the Albera range, within the municipal district of Argelès-sur-Mer (Roussillon), has an area of 300 hectares and mainly consists of beech and white oak.
THE LAGOONS OF LA JONQUERA
A zone (30 hectares) of small lagoons and ponds at the southern end of the municipal district of La Jonquera, very close to those of Cantallops and Capmany.
THE ALBERA TURTLE BREEDING CENTRE
Situated next to the chapel of Mare de Déu del Camp, in Garriguella, it was created for the purpose of the reproduction and conservation of the Mediterranean turtle.
Historical and monumental heritage
The Albera Hills possess one of the most important concentrations of megalithic monuments in Catalonia (110 dolmens, 19 menhirs, 7 cists and a Neolithic settlement). The area also enjoys a rich heritage of Romanesque art in the form of chapels, churches and monasteries. The most notable monument is the old Benedictine monastery of Sant Quirze de Colera, from the 10th century.
Within the natural area there are notable remains of castles from the 14th and 15th centuries: Rocabertí, Requesens and Canadal.
Offices of the park
Situated in the old rectory building of the village of Espolla
C/ Mossèn Amadeu Sudrià, 3 Espolla 17753 | T. 972 545 079