Picos Mountain Adventure Picture 1
Picos Mountain Adventure Picture 1

Next departure:  Please Call for Details

Best Time of Year: Feb - October

Max alt:  2100m

Dist:  54km

Min age:  18

Duration:  4

Picos Mountain Adventure

Trek Adventure

Straddled across the twin provinces of Asturias and Cantabria in Northern Spain, the Picos Mountains are nothing short of breathtaking. Thousands of years of erosion and geological activity have created soaring limestone towers, and plunging cavernous gorges. This really is and awesome part of the world and well worth a visit.

From the tip of Torre Cerredo the range’s highest peak (2 648m), to the raging Rio Cares, this amazingly compact range of mountains offers everything we are looking for in a ‘mountain getaway’. Also known as a fine reserve of wildlife it will certainly be possible to see a great variety of birdlife including broad winged vultures, eagles and certainly mountain goat, and possibly wild deer, but other sightings are strong possibilities. The undergrowth in summer is alive with wriggling lizards. Your trip will be an unforgettable introduction to Adventure in this inspiring high mountain environment.



Day 1 - Meet Santander Airport latest by 15:00. Transfer to Poncebos. Short walk (Approx 1.5 hrs) to overnight accommodation in Bulnes which is only accessible by foot or funicular railway.
Day 2 - Depart Bunkhouse 09:00 and trek into the Picos for your overnight accommodation, Refugio Vega Urriellu (1903m) arrival by 13:00. Lunch at Vega Urriellu before setting off for the afternoon to explore the high Picos. Expect to be trekking to high passes of 2250m - with epic views across incomparable mountainscape.
Day 3 - Depart Lodge 09:00. Further trek into high Picos mountains, climbing to over 2000m beneath the stunning & awe inspiring Picu Urriellu - before departing back to Bulnes for the evening! Arrival by 16:00. Overnight in our favourite hostal in the village of Bulnes.
Day 4 - Depart Bulnes 09:00. Trek back to Poncebos before trekking down the famous Cares gorge for lunch in Cain. From Cain we will trek back to Poncebos and transfer back to the fascinating town of Arenas de Cabrales for a celebratory beer or two with a view back towards the Picos!
Day 5 Depart Arenas 10:00 transfer back to Santander Airport for your journey back to the UK.


Route Map


Night 1 - Simple Rustic Bunkhouse in Bulnes with hot showers and great food. The Lodge owner looks after us well when we visit the tiny village of Bulnes
Night 2 - High Adventure in the mountains - wild and away from it all at the Vega Urriellu mountain refuge in the heart of the Picos. Simple standard, and simple food.
Night 3 - Simple Rustic Bunkhouse back in Bulnes with hot showers and great food.
Night 4 - Hotel in the historic town of Arenas de Cabrales.


What is a Level 3.0 Trekking Challenge Like?

These challenges are either longer, higher, or span several days. In the case of single day events, you can expect up to 9 hours trekking. In the case of a multi day trek, you can expect a lower daily duration, but of course the effort is sustained over a longer period. You need to be keen on physical exercise for these events, and to enjoy taking exercise, and do it regularly. Longer duration long haul treks are likely to be easier in terms of the physical walking, however you will need to be more resilient, due to simple living conditions. UK single day or weekend level 3 treks are suited to walkers and trekkers with some previous history of upland walking or alternatively a good amount of lowland training behind them.


How Fit Do I need to be to join a Level 3.0 ‘Trek’?

You need to have good endurance for these events. You must be used to doing very long walks in the countryside; 7 hours plus . You should be doing regular exercise, possibly with some running. Your running speed will be fairly steady; nothing too fast, and you should be able to run a minimum of 4 miles. If you do not run, you should be concentrating on other types of exercise but for longer periods of time (i.e. sessions in excess of 1.5 hrs). These other forms of exercise should be at a moderate to high level. e.g. spinning, circuits, swimming, or other sports.


Medical Issues

Please note, it is extremely important for this physical challenge that you are in good health. If you have any pre-existing medical conditions, please consider carefully whether you should be joining the challenge. Please ensure you fill in the booking form accurately and honestly, this is important. In the case of serious conditions (epilepsy, diabetes, heart conditions, recent illness or operations), please discuss the challenge with your GP. Please also ensure you notify us of any allergies or similar.

You should be used to walking reasonable distances each day to contemplate this trek. It requires stamina and good aerobic fitness - but good willpower will also come in handy! Failure to disclose medical conditions is a serious omission - that could have serious repercussions on any of our challenges.


Visas / Redtape

When travelling abroad you may require a Visa. Please check the Travcour website (www.travcour.com) for up to date Visa information. Here they can advise you on the best action to take. If you require further information please don't hesitate to contact the Café.


Included In Trip

Transfers, All Accommodation (B&B), Guide and information pack as prepared by Adventure Café 


Excluded From Trip

International Airfares - please ask if you require assistance with flights and we should be able to offer well priced flights with good connections. Excludes transfers in UK to airport (Lift Share may be available expect to share costs on Parking at Airport and Packed Lunches x 3 + Dinner x 4


Equipment Required

Water Purification Tablets, Suncream, Blister Repair Kit
Plasters, Vaseline, Rehydration Salts
Painkillers, Sunbloc, Insect Repellant

Pack Towel (lifesystems recommended), Soap (small bar)
Shampoo (not a full size bottle!)
Toothbrush, Toothpaste (small size)

Hill Walking Items
Sleeping Bag - 2/3 season rated to 0° C comfort rating or sleeping bag liner (silk or cotton)
Medium Sized Rucksack - lined with waterproof bags
Rucksack Liner(s) / Plastic Liner(s) for Rucksack
Bladder System (highly recommended - or other water bottles e.g. exercise bottle/Nalgene bottle)
Walking Poles (highly recommended)
Sun Hat (wide brimmed), Neck Scarf
Snack Foods - we recommend good slow burning items - nuts, dried fruit, cereal bars etc.

Warm Clothing
Lightweight Fleece, Medium Weight Fleece, Lightweight Gloves
Heavy Gloves (mitten type recommended), Fleece Hat

Trek Clothing
Long Cotton Trekking Trousers, 1 Pair Tracksuit Bottoms
Comfortable Trekking Shirts (long/short sleeved)
Walking Boots (broken in with ankle protection)
Walking Socks, Liner Socks
Underwear, 1 Change of Casual Evening Wear

Outer Fully Waterproof Jacket (Gore-tex, E-vent)
Outer Waterproof Bottoms

Toilet Roll / Pack of Travel Tissues, Spare Lace
Camera, Film / Memory Card / Spare Battery
Travel Documents, EHIC Travel Card
Travel Insurance (compulsory)

Wallet, Credit Cards, Cash
Sunglasses, Spare Comfortable Shoes
Penknife, Mobile Phone (packed in a plastic bag deep inside your day pack!)
Emergency Rations (energy foods - for the tough days on trek)
Head Torch with spare batteries and bulb


Kit Hire

It is possible to hire equipment via our specialist kit hire providers Outdoor Hire Ltd. We have negotiated a 10% discount for all our mountain challengers.


Safety Information

By nature all activities contain an element of risk.Your leader will be first aid qualified and will carry the appropriate safety kit for the activity, such as mountain safety shelters, walking rope and from time to time mobile radios. Safety equipment carried will be appropriate to trip. The leader's primary role is to ensure your safety, but it is your responsibility to listen to their guidance and instructions.



Most likely is glorious hot temperatures and warm sunshine, although rain and overcast conditions are surprisingly common here for Spain. This is due to the proximity of the Atlantic. Be prepared for all weather conditions especially if heading into the mountains..


Notes on Trekking Events

Trek the Mountains of the World with Adventure Cafe, and our fantastic team of qualified leaders. From the UK, to the Alps, Pyrenees, Atlas Mountains, Himalayas and even Kilimanjaro. Put our International Mountain Leaders to the test! Check.


Adventure Cafe Booking Terms and Conditions

By booking an event with Adventure Cafe, you agree to these standard terms of booking. Please ensure that you read the appropriate document for your type of event carefully.

Adventure Cafe Terms & Conditions - For all types of event

To Reserve Your Space on this Challenge

You should fill in the Google Form - linked here below, and then please call us on 01823 444 246 to advise of your payment method. We can accept card payments over the phone, or Bank Transfer. Please note that your space is not confirmed until you have received your booking receipt.

CLICK HERE: Adventure Cafe Challenge Booking Form - For Challenge Events



Guide price

£Price on application



This Challenge is for exclusive group departures – please call us for more information

Event Location

Picos Mountain Adventure Picture 2
Picos Mountain Adventure Picture 2

Picos Mountain Adventure Picture 3
Picos Mountain Adventure Picture 3

Our Challengers Said...
Never thought I would admit to miss the pains & aches from our Picos Mtns trip! But I really do!!
Helle   25-Jun-2009