Located between the provinces of Ciudad Real and Albacete, they have recently been chosen as one of the 7 natural wonders of Spain. This impressive natural park is made up of 15 lagoons, each one more beautiful, located along the valley of the PInilla River.
It is often said that the Guadiana River is born here, although there are several theories as to where the source actually takes place.
The waterfalls that join the lagoons together are a unique attraction in a place where fun and adventure are guaranteed.
Get to know the Ruidera Lagoons
Before taking a bath in one of the beautiful lagoons or doing any of the walking routes, we recommend that you take a panoramic tour by car.
You can do it along the road that borders the lagoons from the town of Ruidera.
You will get to know each and every one of the lagoons and you will be able to stop at all of them at the viewpoints that are prepared for them. It must be said that you cannot park on the hard shoulder or outside the authorized sites.
Once you have seen all the lagoons you can choose one of the routes offered at the Visitor Center.
For example, the Ruta de las Hazadillas, a very interesting and beautiful circular route. There is another route, called the Ruta de la Laguna Blanca, which offers you a tour of the typical vegetation of the park as well as reaching what many consider to be the source of the Guadiana River.
And to relax, the best thing is to take a bath in calm and crystal clear waters. Also remember that bathing is only allowed in designated places.
Activities in the Ruidera Lagoons
In addition to hiking or taking a bath, you can also do other much more exciting activities.
In the town of Ruidera you will find numerous active tourism companies that will offer you. You will also find them in other nearby ones such as Ossa de Montiel.
Among the activities offered there are 4×4 routes, horseback riding, paintball, canoeing, balloon flights and even caving.
If you are patient you can also enjoy the birds that live in the park. Of course, you will have to go to uncrowded places where silence and tranquility reign so that the birds come out and you can see and photograph them.
Other places of interest in the Lagunas de Ruidera
Although the main attraction of the Lagunas de Ruidera are the lagoons themselves and their wonderful waterfalls, we also find other places in the park that you should not miss.
Although before talking about those places we want to talk about the best waterfall you will find, the one called el Hundimiento and that you can visit in the town of Ruidera.
For example, the Peñarroya Castle located next to the dam of the same name and in a great state of conservation.
This castle was conquered in the year 1200 from the Arabs and had previously been a citadel.
It is a very interesting castle that also contains the Hermitage of Our Lady of Peñarroya, which is accessed from the Patio de Armas.
But this is not the only castle that we find in the area. There is also the Rochafrida Castle, although this is much worse preserved and if you want to save yourself the visit because it is not close to the most interesting places, you can do so.
The castle is also of Arab origin and was conquered in 1212 after the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa.
And if you like speleology, very close to the Rochafrida Castle you have the Cueva de Montesinos, famous for appearing in Don Quixote.
How to get to the Lagunas de Ruidera
Getting to the Lagunas de Ruidera is very easy. If you go from Madrid or Ciudad Real, you must take the N-430 from Manzanares that takes you to Ruidera.
The road that surrounds the lagoons begins after crossing a bridge that leaves the Laguna del Rey to your right and to the left (although not visible from the road) the Hundimiento, one of the most spectacular waterfalls in the park. By the way, on the N-430 you will pass through Alhambra, where there is another castle.
If you go from the east, such as Albacete or Valencia, you must also take the N-430 but in the opposite direction passing through Ossa de Montiel.