This wonderful park is located in the province of Toledo. Less than 2 hours from the capital there is a wonderful nature reserve, full of life and places to explore.
Difficulty of the route: ★★☆☆☆ (Normal but beautiful)
Despite the fact that this park is perfectly adapted for houses on wheelsWe, for a change and to treat ourselves, stayed at the The Glass Refugeabout 5 minutes from the village of Hontanar. We walked through the national park from Friday to Sunday and did two hiking trails which we will tell you about below.
Hoz de Carboneros Route
To start this route you have to reach a point where you can't go any further with the van (or car) because there is a chain. There is space to park. To reach the final destination, which is a waterfall, two tracks are availableThe first is located where you leave the car and is signposted (see below). The second route is shorter and much more beautiful, as it goes along the stream. This route was recommended to us by Carlos, the owner of the refuge where we stayed. To follow the alternative route you must follow the path just behind the sign.She will take you through two iron gates until you reach the bank of the stream, and then start to follow it.
Fun fact: The streams are for public use, even if there are fences to access them, you can pass them, the owners of those lands are aware of this situation and cannot prohibit you from accessing them. This is what we have done and you can see it at our IG.
Unfortunately, due to the weather, we could not finish the route. It started to hail heavily and we had to return to the van. On the positive side, returning earlier than planned allowed us to spend the afternoon at a viewpoint on our own, which we will tell you more about below.
If you want to see the whole story of our journey along this route, go to our Instagram account. @wakeuptravellerin the featured story: "P.Cabañeros".
Rent one of our vans:
"Unique design and very comfortable. Suitable for all 4 seasons at incredible prices".
The Navalucillos stream route
This route has a duration of approximately 3 hours on footIt takes an hour and a half to get to the waterfall and another hour and a half to get back.
We went the first week of December and started the route around 11 am. On the way there we were completely alone, although we met some people coming back, we were able to enjoy the waterfall and take some pictures in complete solitude.
Along the way you are accompanied by a stream that offers different views as you walk along the path.. It is relatively flat until the last 20 minutes when you have to climb a staircase that leads to the top of the mountain, and then descend a few meters to find a small paradise; the waterfall of "El Chorro".
It is a place that has not changed in the last thousand years, it is still intact and fortunately there is still plenty of water. Its beauty is difficult to perceive in photos, but once you get there it is very beautiful and it is bigger than it seems, and we certainly did not expect such a landscape.
We recommend going during the rainy season to be able to observe a greater flow, both in the stream and in the waterfall.
This route is just a few metres from a free campsite for vans and motorhomes, which we will tell you more about below.
Free camping point for vans and motorhomes in Cabañeros
This is a free camping site in the middle of a valley surrounded by mountains. The positive thing about this site, which few motorhome areas have, is a restaurant with toilets. For small vans this is heaven.Having access to toilets in the middle of a natural park for free is one of the best things there is.
Within the rules of the placeThe green sign in the picture is highlighted:
- The maximum stay allowed on site is 72 hours. Ideal for a weekend stay.
- Respect rest hours from 24:00 to 07:00.
- Do not spill liquids in the area.
- The use of outdoor elements such as tables, awnings, chairs, etc. is not permitted.
- Keep the site in a perfect state of cleanliness.
- No fires allowed.
A magical place to rest: El Refugio de Cristal
El Refugio is an eco-hotel, bioclimatic and sustainable.
We tell you some of the major sustainable practices they have adopted, use solar thermal energy and biomass, They reuse water, especially rainwater, dispose of waste in more than 95% and are supplied in bulk.
The stay at El Refugio de Cristal
It includes free breakfastIt is very, very tasty and quite filling, ideal to start the day full of energy to get lost in the nature reserve.
All rooms are south-facing with beautiful views of the valley.
They have free activities The visit of a local cheese factory and astronomical observation are some of the activities available in the surrounding areas.
They offer dinners with a varied and wonderful menu. Taking advantage of local and rural production.
A hidden viewpoint for watching the sunset
This place has been recommended by people in the area of the park. Almost nobody knows it and it is a magical place, located almost at the top of the mountain and easily accessible for motorhomes and camper vans. Below is a photo, if you want to see what the 360° view is like you will have to see it with your own eyes.