Pantano de Elche

Pantano de Elche is a wonderful nature reserve and swampland teaming with interesting and colourful flora & fauna. The lake and vast swamp marshes were formed over many years after the construction of the dam wall. It is the first arch type dam wall to be built in Europe since Roman times. It lies in a vast natural basin which forms the lake. This is surrounded by arid countryside and orchards interspersed with ravines and excellent hiking and mountain biking trails. Pantano de Elche lies about 5 kilometres north of the city and makes for a fantastic family day out.

Pantano de Elche
Source: Flickr / Angel L. Valero

Pantano de Elche Flora & Fauna

Nature enthusiasts will be in their element when exploring the superb flora & fauna of the area. The surrounding countryside, ravines, swampland, marshes and lake form an intricate micro climate. This is an important natural feature of the municipality and the entire area is protected. Therefore, visitors should respect their environment and stick to the nature trails during their exploration. There are literally hundreds of different species of trees, plants, shrubs and flowers. The bird life is exquisite and includes a variety of waterfowl as well as majestic birds of prey. The lake and marshes are teeming with fish and reptiles, and you may even spot the odd wild boar. You can also see foxes, ferrets, various types of mice, and if you're lucky, the elusive Genet cat.

Pantano de Elche Leisure Pursuits

You don't have to be a nature enthusiast to enjoy spending time at Pantano de Elche. The rugged landscape surrounding the lake lends itself perfectly to hiking and mountain biking. The entire area is criss-crossed with nature and hiking trails. But again, in order to keep the environment pristine and thriving, please don't venture off the trails. A popular feature of the nature reserve, especially with families out for a picnic, is the area below the dam wall. The water overflow from the lake creates a natural waterfall. This area is perfect to rest, eat and enjoy a refreshing dip.


The museums in Elche are a pleasure to explore and offer visitors a window to the city's history and important landmarks. They are spread throughout the city centre where visitors will find pleasant gardens...