European Nature - Reserves, National Parks & Unesco Listed Heritage Sites
Europe is a great destination for nature lovers with rich diversity of natural sites. Europe’s territories are abundant with biosphere reserves, nature reserves, national parks, regional parks and natural parks all worth to be explored.
The nature variety across the European countries is also reflected in its incredible diversity of great landscapes and protected sites. Depending on the country one is traveling to, he can find the following main landscapes:
Alpine - the Alps set over seven countries;
Mountains - to mention few popular the Pyrenees between France and Spain, the Rila and Rhodopes in Bulgaria, the Dolomites in Italy, Slovakia’s and Poland’s Tatras Mountains, the Triglav Mountains in Slovenia, etc;
Arctic landscapes in Iceland, Norway, Scotland and Swedish Lapland;
Numberless crystal lakes, in Austria, BulgariaHungary, Finland, Croatia, etc;
Karstic landscapes with some fascinating forms in Bulgaria, Croatia, Slovenia, etc;
Steppes, found in Norway, Sweden and Finland;
Lagoons in Belgium, Frisian Islands, the Netherlands;
Famous heaths, in Belgium and United Kingdom;
Huge old forests, in Scandinavia, Bulgaria, Poland;
Beaches and cosy creeks in Spain, Malta, Italy, Bulgaria, France, Cyprus, the Baltic States, Croatia;
Deltas - the Danube Delta, the Pô Delta, etc;
Imposing huge cliffs, such as Etretat in France;
Glaciers and volcanos - in Iceland are mixed both fire and ice. The Etna volcano in Italy, Vesuvius and Stromboli. Majestic glaciers across Austria and Switzerland.
All these protected sites are abundant of greatly diversified flora and fauna and have been identified as natural areas representative of a particular region.
In total, there are around 359 national parks across Europe and this is not a final number as each country, on an annually basis may declare that an exclusively beautiful or fragile natural site is in need of protection has to be granted with such status.
The Unesco’s World Heritage Sites list includes many of the European parks, with the mission is to protect and preserve the natural sites.
Europe is teeming with exclusive variety of nature, both inside and outside these protected natural sites. The huge diversity of landscapes across the European continent has given rise to number of activities - eco tourism, and especially hiking is highly appreciated way to visit Europe’s beautiful landscapes and greatly popular.
One can go climbing or biking across the mountainous areas, explore some unique natural forms in the karstic caves, go angling on the lakes and riversides, rafting and canoeing. One can also enjoy boat trips on the rivers and seas as well as to do some fascinating bird watching in lagoons or marshlands.
Sustainable Tourism is a common concern all across Europe, and if you love the natural sites preserve them so that the future generations can enjoy them as well!
National Parks and Monuments in Europe
Cota de Donana National Park, Dartmoor National Park,
Lake Como, Lake Garda, Lake Maggiore, Lake Vattern, Mt. Etna, North York Moors National Park, Plitvice Lakes National Park, Rondane and Dovrefjell National Parks,
The New Forest, Yorkshire Dales National Park.
Islands in Europe
AEro, Aegina, Barra, Coll and Tyree, Corfu, Delos, Eigg and Muck, Elba, Fair Isle, Folegandros, Formentera, Gotland, Harris,
Hios, Holyhead and Holy Island, Hydra, Ibiza, Iona and Staffa, Isle of Anglesey, Isle of Arran, Isle of Colonsay, Isle of Skye, Kefalonia, Kintyre Peninsula, Kos, Krk Island, Kyle of Lochalsh, Lesvos, Lipari, Madeira, Majorca, Minorca,
Mljet, Mull, Mykonos, Naxos, North and South Uist, Oland, Pag Island, Paros, Patmos, Poros, Rab Island, Rhodes, Rhum, Samos,
Santorini, Sicily, Sifnos, Simi, Siros, Spetses, Stromboli, Texel Island, The Island of Sylt, The Isle of Gigha, The Isle of Islay, The Isle of Jura, The Isle of Lewis, The Orkney Islands, Tinos, Vulcano.
Island Groups in Europe
Aeolian Islands, Aland Islands, Aran Islands, Argyll and the Southern Hebrides, Baltic Islands, Cres and Losinj Islands, Elafiti Islands, Lofoten Islands, Saronic Gulf Islands, The Hebridean Islands, The Orkney and Shetland Islands, The Shetland Islands.