Andalucia Diary – Seasonal Travel Notes

Laguna de Fuente de Piedra – Andalucía’s Flamingo Lagoon

All Saints Day, November 1st, is probably not really the best time to see Andalucía’s flamingos. Yet, pretty much all year round one is certain to catch a glimpse of some of these fragile looking birds that breed in Andalucía’s largest lagoon.

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Since it was a public holiday, and sunny without a cloud in the sky, we headed up to the Laguna de Fuente de Piedra, about an hour or so north of Malaga; all the more close thanks to the new motorway.

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Just outside the village of Fuente de Piedra is the lagoon; a huge salty lake that makes a perfect habitat for these delicate pink flamingos. Most have already headed off to Africa, but with this warm autumn, there are still a few left, headsbowed, digging around in the shallow waters on the edge of the lake, looking for crustacea.

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Hundreds of species of bird come to this special place – close to Africa, the lagoon is a conveniently located point for wildlife to recuperate after an intercontinental trip! So it's a great place for nature lovers.

It is a real oasis in a landscape that has been totally altered through farming and the cultivation of olives – even the lagoon was exploited for its salt, the very mineral that attracts the flamingos; and in the nineteenth century it was under threat of being drained!

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The lagoon is protected now and there is an updated visitor centre offering rental mountain bikes -  a great way to get around the lake and explore the hiking trails.  We’re told spring is the best time to see the birds, rosy pink after their winter in Africa.

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The nearby village has little of note, but it does have a charming period train station that appears in a time warp compared to its neighbouring stations on the ultra fast AVE line, where trains pass at 300kph!

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Andrew ForbesTravel & Lifestyle Marketing Communications Consultant | Travel Editor Web: www.andrewforbes.com Twitter : @andrewaforbes Instagram @andrewaforbes and @luxurynavigatorView all posts by Andrew Forbes »