Five spots that are very close to heaven

Even if you are not an expert mountaineer, there are five places very close to this rural hotel in the Gredos Mountains that you’ll never forget – you’ll always be able to recall their unique beauty.

Laguna del Barco or Laguna de Galín Gómez

This is very close to Nava del Barco. Before you get there, at the highest point of this pass, you’ll find a parking lot. This is where the route starts and where you can also see a sign describing it.

This walk is 11 kilometres long (round trip), is of medium difficulty and takes 3 and a half hours (3 hours and a half hours going up and approximately 3 hours for the descent).

Laguna de la Nava

This lake is at an altitude of 1,998 metres, and the amazing colour of its waters – a greenish-blue – makes it very beautiful. To see it, you will have to put on your walking boots and follow a hiker’s route.
About 500 meters from Nava del Barco, along the road to Umbrías, there’s a concrete track, which is where the route starts. The path is clearly marked as PR-AV 39.
The climb takes about 4 hours and the descent about 2 and a half hours.

Laguna de los Caballeros

This, one of the most isolated lakes in the Gredos Mountains, is at an altitude of 2,000 metres. The route to it from Navalguijo is 28 km in total (round trip), and climbs considerably.
It is of medium difficulty, and the estimated time to complete the full round trip, is about 8 hours.
The path starts at the end of the village of Navalguijo, next to a drinking trough, and runs upstream through the gorge.

The Plataforma de Gredos

As you leave Hoyos del Espino there’s a 12-kilometre road that takes you to the “Platform”, where there is a large car park. It’s at an altitude of 1,750 metres above sea level.

Many small, medium and long hiking routes start here. Follow one, and you’ll not only discover all the beauty of this area, you may also see the animal which is symbolic of the local fauna – the Mountain Goat.

The best-known routes are Laguna Grande, Pico Almanzor, Cinco Lagunas (five lakes), Morezon and Garganton.

Cinco Lagunas (five lakes)

These are a series of small lakes of glacial origin, on the north slope of the central massif of the Gredos Mountains.

To reach this wonderful spot, where you seem to be on the roof of the world, take the main route, which starts from Navalperal de Tormes.

The Bajera Lake is the fifth of the five lakes, at an altitude of 2,095 m. The fourth, Galana Lake, is nearby. A little further up you’ll reach the third, which is called Medianera or Brincalobitos. Walking a little further will take you to the second: the Doncella or Cabrón Lake.

The route ends at the outflow from the first lake, the largest, called Cimera or Cabeza Nevada (at 2,125 m.). The Gutre and Cinco Lagunas crags look down on the lake.