Thursday, 26 September 2013

Asturias – The Valley of the Bears

One Sunday afternoon we didn’t really have any plans so we decided to go and see those famous bears of the Valley of the Bears. We found a bus that left at midday, made some lunch then off we were towards Tuñon, the tickets costing only 2.70 euros each.

The cycle hire place was conveniently 5 min from the bus stop and offered many kinds of bikes, from normal ones for adults and children through tandems to the ones with little trailers attached to it so that your doggie can travel at the back. It also offered different routes so if you wanted to cycle a bit further, away from the crowd then you had the option to do so. We were given a map, were asked if we want helmets then told it’s not necessary for this route (what happened to health&safety in this country?!) then off we went.

The Bear Path, ‘la Senda del Oso’ got its name from the three bears that live there in captivity. They were found as babies in the mountains and were brought up here in semi-captivity. They can be spotted any time of the day although they have a little house to go into when it gets too hot. The bears were hiding but we weren’t too upset about it, we have another chance to see them on the way back.

The path is famous for being the perfect walking and cycling route. It leads you away from the hustle and bustle and into rural villages and amazing scenery. It’s completely flat and goes for 22 km on dirt roads, forests, over bridges, along rivers and lakes and through a number of tunnels so the road is full of adventure.

The weather was – as usual here in Asturias – cloudy so we didn’t see much of the mountains but there were lots to see anyway.

The route went through a few villages but it was always clearly indicated.

It was lovely cycling through the forest and the many tunnels.

Soon we got to this lovely reservoir. It was possible to do lake kayaking and we were tempted but kept going.

We kind of lost the trail and had to cycle on asphalt so we turned back and came back on the other side of the lake. By this time the clouds have disappeared and suddenly we saw all the surrounding mountains.

Even tough we came back the same way it felt like a completely different route as this time it was all sunny and it completely changed the landscape.

Even the bears were out to enjoy the sun.

We got back with plenty of time to spare. We had a nice cold drink then lounged in the Centre’s garden while waiting for the bus.

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