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Navia y Valdés (Western Asturias)
Open to the public

Spring - summer.

2 km2
Contact Address

Tourist Office.
Los Caleros, 11.
33700 Luarca.

Phone 985 640 083

Tourist Office.
Jardines de Alfonso Iglesias.
Avenida de La Darsena, S/N.
33710 Navia

Phone Tel. 985 473 795

  • Barayo is located between the boroughs of Navia and Valdés, running along the coastline from Romanellos Point to Arnela Beach.

  • Plant life

    The beach and dune vegetation is superbly conserved, with a good representation of abundant communities of the Cakiletea maritimae class. At the ends of Barayo Cove there are cliff vegetation systems typical to the western coastline of Asturias, while a series of Galician-Asturian shady oak groves predominates on the slopes bordering the mouth of the river.

    The existence of well-preserved cliff vegetation communities, dunes, reedbeds and post-dune alders makes for a unique habitat in the region.


    The most important wildlife specimens in Barayo are otters, emblem of the reserve, which can sometimes be seen walking along the beach -the only place this occurs in western Asturias- and oystercatchers, with about a dozen pairs breeding annually in the region. Both species are included in the Special Interest and Sensitive to any Alteration in their Habitat categories in the Regional Catalogue of Threatened Vertebrate Species of Interest.

Barayo is a Partial Nature Reserve encompassing cliffs, dunes and beaches.

The geographical scope of Barayo subject to a protection order comprises the coastal strip between Arnao or Romanellos Point to Los Aguiones Point, including the beach, the estuary, Barayo dune system, Sabugo or D'Arnela Beach, the surface of the coastal plateau delimiting the two beaches and the Pedrona and Romanellos cliffs and islets.

The River Barayo, the natural border between the boroughs it separates, forms a spectacular estuary at its mouth, one of great natural and scenic wealth. After the estuary, the watercourse runs through the ancient marshes turning sharply to the west near its end, bound by the backshore dune ridges, where the system of embryonic and secondary dunes is well conserved.

After the dunes, the river forms meanders surrounded by reed beds. As the saline influence of the sea lessens, the riversides become populated with characteristic riverbank species: alders and willows, which form a lush gallery forest. The existence of swampy areas allows for this excellent representation of Western and swamp alders, rich in species typical of the Phragmititea class, which are extremely scarce in the region.

Cliffs and hillsides complete this fascinating environment, where cliff vegetation systems typical to the western coastline of Asturias are excellently represented.

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