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Forest of Hayedo de Montejo, UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Spain
The Hayedo de Montejo, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, is home to the South-Estern most Beech forest. The relatively small 250-hectare forest is located on the fringe of the Sierra de Ayllon mountain range, just outside the village of Montejo de la Sierra, and near the border of the Guadalajara region. Forming amber-leaved canopies, the trees seasonally shift shades, especially during autumn, when they turn this regular forest into a natural wonderland exploding with color.
The Hayedo de Montejo is also pretty noteworthy in terms of its unlikely existence, which it owes to a unique microclimate that benefits from exceptional shade and humidity trapped by the mountainside. As such, while these kinds of beech trees are more common in the north and the rest of Europe, their presence this far south in Spain isn’t, making the Hayedo a mighty special sight.