Cabrera Archipelago Maritime-Terrestrial National Park
|Native name: Parc Nacional Maritimoterrestre de l’Arxipèlag de Cabrera (Catalan)
Parque Nacional Marítimo-Terrestre del Archipiélago de Cabrera (Spanish)
|Area||100 km2 (40 sq mi)|
|Highest elevation||172 m (564 ft)|
|Highest point||Na Picamosques|
|Autonomous Community||Balearic Islands|
|Density||0 /km2 (0 /sq mi)|
The Cabrera Archipelago Maritime-Terrestrial National Park (Catalan: Parc Nacional Maritimoterrestre de l'Arxipèlag de Cabrera, Spanish: Parque Nacional Marítimo-Terrestre del Archipiélago de Cabrera) is a national park that includes the whole of the Cabrera Archipelago in the Balearic Islands (Catalan: Illes Balears, Spanish: Islas Baleares), an autonomous community that is part of the Spanish State. The park covers 100 square kilometers (38.7 square miles), though 87 square kilometers (33.6 square miles) is covered by water. The park attracts relatively few visitors due to its remoteness. There is no permanent population, but there might be at any given time just under 100 National Park staff members and other personnel on the islands.
The archipelago has great natural value. Due to its isolation throughout history, it has remained relatively unchanged. The coastal landscape of Cabrera is often considered one of the best preserved on the Spanish coast, and indeed in all of the Mediterranean, as a result. The islands are blanketed by important colonies of seabirds and other endemic species. Due to its biotic wealth and abundance and variety of birds, the park has also been declared a Special Protection Area (SPA) for birds. It is also a Site of Community Importance (SIC), and as such is integrated into the Natura 2000 network. The park is likewise among the ranks of the Specially Protected Areas of Mediterranean Importance (SPAMI) under the protocols for protected marine areas established by the Barcelona Convention.
Administratively, the islands belong to the municipality of Palma de Mallorca despite their distance.
Use of the islands by the Spanish Armed Forces from 1973 to 1986 served as an obstacle to achieving protection for the archipelago. In 1988, the Parliament of the Balearic Islands unanimously passed a resolution then sent to the Spanish Parliament "for the creation of the Cabrera Archipelago Maritime-Terrestrial National Park," which was later enacted into law on April 29, 1991. The park, in addition to the law, is governed by the "Master Plan for Use and Management of the Cabrera Archipelago Maritime-Terrestrial National Park" approved by means of Order 58/2006 on July 1, 2006 by the Government of the Balearic Islands for a six-year period.
Limited military use of the area continues all the same.
Cabrera Archipelago National Park is a restricted cruising destination, and boats may anchor only in the island's natural harbor. Many species survive on Cabrera that are rare in other parts of the Balearics, such as dolphins and sea snails. Diving is strictly limited and a license allows for a one day visit only. Excursions to the island are a rare event and are treasured by the diving community. Hiking possibilities are abundant. There is a visitors center, a 14th-century castle and a museum, as well as a gift shop and café.
- Moreno, Jorge; Ballesteros, Enrique; Amengual Ramis, José. Arxipièlag de Cabrera: parc nacional. Barcelona: Lunwerg Editores, 2001, ISBN 84-7782-798-2. (Catalan) (English)
- Media related to Cabrera Archipelago Maritime-Terrestrial National Park at Wikimedia Commons
- Media related to Cabrera Castle at Wikimedia Commons
- (Catalan) Guia de Mallorca: Parc de l'Arxipèleg de Cabrera
- (Spanish) Parque Nacional del Archipiélago de Cabrera (Ministerio de Medio Ambiente de España)