The landscape is an eminent example of cultural interchange between the Islamic and Christian cultures of Spain. The evidence of Moorish cultivation (from the 8th to 17th century when they were evicted from the land) is visible especially in the waterworks networks and olive groves in the area.

Cultural Landscape of the Serra de Tramuntana

The Cultural landscape of Serra de Tramuntana is an outstanding example of a Mediterranean agricultural landscape. Apparently, the landscape only became productive after centuries of transforming the steep terrain morphology to exploit the available scarce resources. Fortunately the orogenic, climatic and vegetation conditions that characterized the area, it finally became suitable for agriculture, and thus suitable for human settlement.

The cultural landscape is made complete by an intricate system of cobbled roads and terraces that are unique to the Mediterranean region. The landscape is further enhanced by fusing it with a network of land reclamation devices that include water management devices that revolve around the farmland and has its origins to feudal Spain.

Human settlement in the area is evidenced by villages, sanctuaries, lighthouses, churches, dry stone structures and towers that punctuate the terraced landscape.

The cultural landscape of Serra de Tramuntana was inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2011. It occupies an area of 30,745 hectares and has a buffer zone of 78,617 hectares. The list below showcases the landscape's universal value and the reasons why the site was listed in this all-important register.

  • The landscape is an eminent example of cultural interchange between the Islamic and Christian cultures of Spain. The evidence of Moorish cultivation (from the 8th to 17th century when they were evicted from the land) is visible especially in the waterworks networks and olive groves in the area.
  • The cultural landscape of Serra de Tramuntana consists of a series of canals, ditches, storage basins and a system of terraced farmland that predates the Catholic kings of the 13th century Spain. This ancient landscape required some conservation, hence the inscription into the World Heritage Sites.
  • The landscape also eminently brings to fore the ability of humans to adapt to the existing environment. The land here was divided into rocky areas on the mountain tops, extensive pasture area, woodland strips, terraced slopes, as well as vineyards and orchards groves. This shows the farmers’ ability to spread their risk in case one crop did not perform well. The fact that they were able to irrigate the infertile land so that they can exploit the meager resources thereof is a classic example of their ability to adapt.

If these are not reasons enough to entice you to visit this beautiful landscape, then I do not know what is.

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