Sierra de Cádiz

I love mountains. Mountains make me feel small and they remind me my place in the world, in the universe. I also love mountains because of the freedom you feel when at nature and the fresh that seem so far away from the pollution of the world at large.

Last year I met and traveled with Sandro Cádiz to the Sierra de Grazalema. The Sierra, as the locals call it, a huge natural park in northeastern part of the province of Cádiz in southern Spain, is a wonderful green space that leaves you feeling one with nature. There are endangered animals in the park, including Egyptian vultures.

There are many pueblos blancos, or white towns, in and around the park. Sandro and I went back and forth to the park over a period of one week. We visited towns like Zahara de la Sierra, which up on a hill and overlooks the Embalse de Zahara el Gastor, a man-made reservoir.

We also visited and had lunch in Vejer de la Frontera, a town voted as the most beautiful in Spain by tourists. There really is nothing like eating lunch up in the mountain while overlooking the natural world below.

One of the evenings we had our dinner in Arcos de la Frontera, another lovely town whose historical importance ranges from Stone Age cave-dwellers to Roman decadence. It was incredible to watch the sunset over a scene out of postcards.

Although the are nine municipalities of the province of Cádiz in and around the Sierra, the other side of the park is also home to five municipalities of the province of Malaga.

A visit to the Sierra is simply a must if you are in Spain. It is for sure one of the most beautiful parts of the country, especially that it is part of the sunny coast. The Costa de la Luz, or the Coast of Light, sees more sun than anywhere else in Western Europe.

AJ Paris is a New York based photographer and the author of the coffee table book “Men Around the World.”

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