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The Liébana Valley, with its distinct mediterranean-type micro-climate, has 3 ‘arms’ of which ours is the loveliest and least developed. Olmares is “off the beaten track” tho’ only a 20 minute drive from Potes the chief “jumping off” centre in Cantabria for the Picos de Europa. The coast, with its white sandy beaches, is only an hour away through the dramatic Hermida Gorge.   In Potes you will find every kind of mountain and outdoor activity on offer. Not only climbing and walking but paragliding, canyon ascending, paint ball, 4x4 excursions, mountain biking, pony trekking and so on. Potes is the shopping town for the whole valley. There are 4 supermarkets as well as souvenir and ‘local produce’ shops.  There is a street market every Monday which is a must for all Lebaniegos. They come in from all around to sell their fruit, vegetables, dried meats and cheeses but also to gossip.

Walking & Hiking.....

Olmares is the perfect location for hikers- all the famous hikes in the region are easily reachable however there are also some great local walks and hikes to be had right from you doorstep up into the hills and mountains behind our village. Our guests have been walking these for years, they're beautiful and real hidden gems.

Eat & Drink.....

We’re passionate about good food and whilst the region is not known for refined cuisine there is a wonderful no-nonsense/authentic approach to the local dishes. This is proper hearty mountain fare consisting of stews, steaks, cold cuts, cheese and fresh local produce. Perfect grub for hungry hikers!

There are some good local restaurants to check out and we’re delighted to give a few recommendations of where to go and what to try. Also a trip to the coast for lunch opens up a world of top notch seafood, local oysters, lobster and the freshest of fish. 

For those that enjoy cooking Potes has everything you need, local produce, amazing cuts of meat and a large array of fresh fish brought in from the coast each day.

All the apartments have well equipped kitchens, but if you’re keen on a BBQ then you’ll be in heaven.  Sit back and sip a Rioja with a couple of steaks on the fire as the sun goes down - life doesn't get much better.

Flora & Fauna.....

Because it’s so unspoilt here flora and fauna survive and prosper as they have done throughout the ages. In the 30 years since we came to live here there have been almost no changes to the old farming methods. You can set your telescope up on your balcony or terrace and watch birdlife from giant raptors to tiny serins go by. We can tell you where to go for golden orioles or wall creepers. For moths and butterflies you need go no further than Basieda – we have buddleia everywhere in the gardens. The short walk to the local stream produces so many different sightings – it’s like strolling through a special butterfly garden. Wild flowers in the Picos de Europa are just glorious – walking the routes from your apartment front door at any time of the year will delight you in the variety of flowers you will see – just about every one in the book of Alpine flowers from cover to cover. For mushroom lovers the woods and meadows around produce an amazing variety and abundance of them in spring and late summer but particularly in autumn when the forests are anyway at their most glorious. The colours of the leaves in the soft golden autumn sunshine is a genuinely uplifting experience.

Do Nothing.....

Olmares is a first-rate base for taking part in any of the activities above, but it's true “raison d’être” is walking, bird-watching, wild life and wild flowers. 

Doing nothing is a definite option. We call it “Basieda Disease” Olmares is the perfect place to disconnect and totally unwind from the speed of modern life. Feel the calm of mountain village life, sit on your balcony or terrace to soak up the dramatic view and fresh air. Listen to the chime of distant cowbells, spy a deer crossing a distant field, read a book or watch a film, and be as private or as social as you like.

Finally, when night comes and the owls and nightjars take over, have a night cap outdoors under a bright, clear, starry sky.

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