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Max Abroad : The Best of Spain

Quite simply writing about the best things Spain has to offer and anything that might crop up along the way. Spain is a lot more than just sun, sand and sea...

Ibonet de Batisielles, a magical spot...
Tuesday, June 7, 2022 @ 10:42 PM


<Foto> Josep Maria Aragonés

<Foto Josep Maria Aragonés>


Batisielles, with its crystalline lake set in a green meadow and its creek winding through rhododendrons, black pines and tall and jagged mountains such as the Tucas de Lxeia and the Agujas de Perramó, is not just the definitive postcard of the Huesca Pyrenees: it is the photo that could be shown to an extraterrestrial to show them how beautiful our world is and make them envious. Logically, it is also one of the most popular and frequented mountain routes on which you cannot get lost, because it starts in the Estós Valley car park, three kilometres above Benasque, and at all times follows the red and white painted marks of the GR-11.2 trail.

After two hours of walking, first, on a forest track and then on a steep, stony trail, the lake is reached. There there is a high mountain ambience and breathtaking views that will take up all the memory in your camera, because for photographers, Batisielles is addictive.



From the small lake, the route can be taken further to the larger lake of Batisielles (one hour) or to those of Escarpinosa (45 minutes). Both options are signposted. The words of the French count Henry Russell, who toured this area of solitary stone, water and sky in the second half of the 19th century, still express what the mountaineer feels today: What earthly paradises! The lakes of Escarpinosa, the immense forests that surround them and the irresistible enchantment of these lost lakes in the faraway deserts of the Pyrenees, hidden among the firs, unknown to the masses, in which wild pyramids 3,000 metres high, immense fields of snow and the mysterious world of the stars can be seen! I hope that nature preserves here for a long time, even forever, its blanket of flowers, its grace and virginity.

Before or after climbing to Batisielles, visit the village of Benasque. It has a quaint old town of narrow streets, grey stone houses and thick slate roofs with Roman-style paving. Here you will see the Renaissance church of Santa María la Mayor, the palace of the counts of Ribagorza (16th century), the house of Marcial Río (17th century), the ancestral Pyrenean home of Fauye and the Infanzona of Juste (15th century), the latter with a large crenellated turret. The restaurants in Benasque serve a variety of game, trout and mushrooms, which are abundant in the mountains.

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