The Picos de Europa group of mountains are situated roughly half way along the northern Spanish coast and inland just a short distance from beaches and coast which are idyllic in the summer. Being further north they are necessarily a little cooler than the majority of inland Spain and provide a welcome refuge during the hotter months of the year. However they can still be unbearably hot!!

In the winter months they are covered in snow as they reach an altitude of some 2500m. Snow can arrive anytime from the middle of October onward, and take some time to disperse during May and June. Being on the Bay of Biscay they can also receive their fair share of precipitation – be prepared for anything! The range forms part of the Cordillera Cantabrica which runs more or less all along the northern coast of Spain offering protection from the worst of the incoming weather – but this coast is called the Green Coast (Costa Verde) for a reason.

Even with an unpredictable climate the walking (and climbing) are spectacular and there are many English language and even more Spanish guide books.

There are many good villages providing accommodation all around the perimeter of the area with Potes being perhaps the liveliest of these and which provides access to the cable car of Fuente De. From here there are many good walks and scrambles across the high level plateau with mountain top objectives along with the opportunity to walk across to the high level refuge at El Maranjo de Bulness – a sharp sided mountain peak frequented by climbers.

Outside of the Central area of the Picos there are both West and East sections as well which provide perhaps lonelier walking with wide ranging – but perhaps less dramatic – views and secnery.