Road Trip 06: Ponga Nature Park

Driving time / km:

Approximately 2 h 25 mins / 117 km

Itinerary:

  • el gran sueño - San Juan de Beleño: 1h 6 mins / 48 km (AS-258 - N-634 - AS-339 - AS-261)
  • San Juan de Beleño - N-625: 26 mins / 13.5 km (PO-2)
  • PO-2 - Canas de Onís: 27 mins / 21 km (N-625)
  • Cangas de Onís - el gran sueño: 35 mins / 35 km (N-625 - N-634)

The Ponga Natural Park is located between the Redes Natural Park and the Picos de Europa National Park, but it is less known than these and rarely visited. It has also been declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Its highest peak, Peña Ten, is 2142 m. 37% of its territory is populated by mature forests (oaks, birches, ash trees ... but especially beech trees).

Parque natural de Ponga

For this road trip, we have planned a circular route, to which we can add several visits (see further down). Firstly, we take the AS-339 and AS-261, through the Municipality of Ponga, which gives the park its name. Then, we return along the N-625 along Los Beyos Gorge, which runs parallel to the River Sella.

In San Juan de Beleño, the capital of the Municipality of Ponga, there is the Interpretation Center of the Natural Park of Ponga, where they can give us information about the park.

It is also possible to make this route in a clockwise direction. In that case, the itinerary would be the following:

  • el gran sueño - Cangas de Onís: 35 mins / 35 km (N-634 - N-625 - AS-114)
  • Cangas de Onís - PO2: 29 mins / 22 km (N-625)
  • PO-2 - San Juan de Beleño: 25 mins / 13.5 km (PO-2)
  • San Juan de Beleño - el gran sueño: 1h 6 mins / 48 km (AS-261 - AS-339 - N-634 - AS-258)

Extra alternative visits:

  • Bosque or Hayedo de Peloño: the Peloño Forest is a Partial Nature Reserve and is one of the largest beech forests in the Iberian Peninsula. You can make a hiking trail from Les Bedules, where we can leave the car. The full trail (round trip) is 25km / 7h, but as it is not circular, we can do as long as we want. By the way, the deviation is in the PO-2 and is marked "Bosque de Peloño"
  • Olla de San Vicente: we leave the car at the height of the Puente Dobra Restaurant, on the N-625. From here we can take the path that will take us to the Fluvial Beach Olla de San Vicente
  • Desfiladero de los Beyos and Oseja de Sajambre: if we continue the dramatic N-625 heading south we arrive at Oseja de Sajambre, in the province of León.

Recommended restaurants:

  • La Sifonería, Cangas de Onís (restaurant, bar and shop)
  • The Molín de la Pedrera, Cangas de Onís
  • Sidrería El Campanu, Cangas de Onís