The highest and most famous peaks in the Navarrese Pyrenees
-la Mesa de los Tres Reyes, Ukerdi, Budogia, Txamantxoia, Lakartxela- and other nearby summits such as Anie, Petrechema and Acherito, preside over and enhance this broad valley where humans, animals and forests have lived in perfect harmony for centuries.
Sheep, cattle and horses graze on communal pastures, while the most out-of-the-way corners are home to animals such as bears
, chamois, marmots, stoats, partridge, golden eagles, black woodpeckers and bearded vultures, some of which are in danger of extinction.
Some parts of this broad valley are protected by law due to their high ecological value. Take a walk through the nature reserves of Larra and Aztaparreta or the integral reserve of Ukerdi
and you will have the opportunity to marvel at the flight of eagles, grouse and griffon vultures, bounding chamois and the amusingly cheeky marmots. You can also enjoy the contrast of black pines against the rocks of Larra
, or the shadows of the gigantic firs and beech trees surrounding the Aztaparreta ravine.
Lovers of nature-based sports
will find a paradise in Belagua. Apart from mountain climbing - it is the perfect place for starting ascents to peaks of over 2,000 metres- there is a range of sports as appealing as they are varied. With the arrival of the good weather you can traverse the numerous mountain biking tracks, go canyoning or enjoy a unique view of the scenery from a hang-glider. In winter Belagua has more than 22 kilometres of cross-country ski trails, distributed over seven smooth pistes and marked tracks. During this season you can also take a variety of snow-shoe tracks through the idyllic woods.
In Larra, you need to watch out for the numerous potholes. The most well-known is the Piedra de San Martín, one of the highest in Europe
with a vertical drop of more than 1,200 metres which has made it one of the favourite venues for caving enthusiasts. It houses a vast and spectacular cavern, the Sala de la Verna, which is accessed from the French side (Sainte-Engrâce) with guided tours available. The cavern is 160 metres wide, around 200 metres long and at some points more than 160 metres high, with a huge waterfall of more than 80 metres
at one end.
After visiting Belagua, do not miss out on the chance to discover the towns in the Roncal valley such as Isaba, Roncal
, the birthplace of Julián Gayarre, and Burgui
, with its Rafters' Museum
. You can also visit the cheese-making dairies in Burgui, Vidángoz and Uztárroz, where there is also the Cheese and Transhumance Museum