BARDENAS REALES, NATURAL DIVERSITY
On the 7th of November 2000, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), via the International Coordinating Council of MaB (Man and Biosphere) Programme, declared Navarre’s Bardenas Reales a Biosphere Reserve.www.bardenasreales.es
SENDA VIVA, ESCAPE INTO NATURE
Discover Navarre’s largest nature park. A large area given over to family leisure with four theme-specific areas: The Fairground with attractions for everyone; The Village, with the playhouse and haunted mansion; The Woods, with its fun-packed mini-rally, freefall etc.; and The Farm, a unique place to see animals. www.sendaviva.com
OLITE, CAPITAL OF THE OLD KINGDOM
Just 27 km away is the historical village of Olite. The village is home to an emblematic castle-palace which housed the court of the Kingdom of Navarre in the Middle Ages. Its Mediaeval Festivals and the Festival of Classical Drama in August are well worth a visit. www.turismo.navarra.es
CASTLE OF MARCILLA
This mighty fortress which can still be admired in the centre of the village was built, it would appear, during the last years of the reign of King Carlos III the Noble. The castle-cum-palace, a beautiful Gothic fortification, was built in brick on stone scarps, which could date from an earlier period (the different colours and textures indicate various stages of construction).
MONASTERY OF LA OLIVA
The solid stone walls of the Monastery of La Oliva house centuries of history and art: an oasis of peace and quiet. La Oliva, one of the three monasteries still standing in Navarre’s Ribera Region, is currently home to 26 Cistercian monks who can be seen, dressed in white, strolling and praying in the cenobitic cloister.
THE SAN FERMIN FIESTA, NAVARRE’S GREAT PARTY
The San Fermin Fiesta has become a universal event and the cornerstone of the identity of the city of Pamplona and, by extension, all of Navarre. Pamplona changes completely from the 6th to the 14th of July to make way for brass bands, processions and, of course, the famous Bull Runs. Good cheer and high spirits abound at this time of the year. www.turismo.navarra.es