by Michael Madsen, your guide to the authentic
Laguna Fuente de Piedra is a wetland located in the northern part of the Malaga province, not far from Antequera. This natural retreat is a safe haven for birds with over 170 different species recorded here. Apart from its abundant aquatic birds, it is well known for its flamingo population, the second largest colony in Europe. The lagoon covers an area of 13 square kilometres, making it the largest natural lake on the Iberian Peninsula. In spring flamingos flock here in their thousands to reproduce, attracted by the water’s high salt content and the fact that it is shallow.
During Roman times, salt was extracted here and flamingos were hunted for their tongues, considered to be a delicacy. It is believed that the lake water had medicinal qualities in the 19th century, so the Laguna de Fuente de Piedra was not allowed to dry out completely, unlike other wetland areas in Spain.
There are no cages, no fencing and nothing in captivity here, but a rich variety of birdlife in a stunning location. Since the lake is quite shallow, it virtually dries out in summer, which results in the flamingos flying as far as the Doñana National Park in Huelva to find food.
The visitor centre, where you can park, is generally uninteresting, the exception being when the lake is almost without water and the flamingos therefore fit into the little dam at the visitor centre instead.
The more interesting places are located further around the lake, where there are also viewpoint hides and the chance to see a wide range of reptiles, such as the Spanish Sand lizard or the Spine-footed lizard. Rabbits, foxes and badges can also be spotted in the fields surrounding the lake. During migration times, terns and waders, as well as birds of prey like short-toed eagles and black kites, can also be seen.
It is a good idea to bring binoculars or telescope cameras, which will make it easier to identify the many species you may see here.
Three amazing places to stay near Fuente de Piedra:
||Casa Rural Aire. Remember that you found it on Autentical! Book it on|
||Apartamentos La Laguna. Remember that you found it on Autentical! Book it on|
||Finca El Arpa. Book it here on|
Ever since childhood, I have experienced artificial tourist areas. But when I tried to create holidays with authentic experiences myself, I ran into big problems… It was deeply frustrating, I couldn’t make a living from it and I was afraid of losing everything.
I was weak and vulnerable – it was a painful time. But I succeeded in the end – and it is a fantastic feeling to know the secret to having authentic holidays. You can also ensure holidays without tourist crowds – fortunately, there is still hope!Read my full story