Sierra de Bernia

The Umbría de Bernia, in the municipality of Benissa, is a plot of land situated in a place which unites floral elements of great importance.

This natural space is situated in the Sierra de Bernia and Ferrer, a group of coastal and pre-coastal mountain ranges, characterised by their wild landscape. Situated among the municipalities of Benissa, Jalón, Altea, Calpe, Alcalalí, Tàrbena and Callosa d’En Sarriá, they form an individualised system of high landscape and environmental value. The Paisaje Protegido de la Sierra de Bernia, as it is called by the Public Administration, consists of 2,843 hectares in the municipalities of Xaló y Benissa; it is in the latter where the plots of land purchased by Fundem can be found.


The barrier formed by the Sierra de Bernia, perpendicular at the coast and submerged in the sea at its eastern extremities by the reefs of the Morro de Toix, stands tall above the two Marinas (Alta and Baja) as a natural division. A crest runs along almost the whole length of the range, at an average height of 900 metres, but it is at its highest at Bèrnia, 1,129 metres above sea level.

The great height which these mountains reach, their ecological and morphological diversity and their proximity to the sea are the main factors which contribute to the existence of numerous habitats and species of flora and fauna, among which are numerous indigenous species. Proof of the exceptional values which these mountains possess is the fact that the area has been included in the Places of Community Interest (LIC) in the Comunitat Valenciana.

The presence of humans in the Sierra de Bernia and Ferrer dates back to distant times. The mountainous interior of the Marinas was one of the largest enclaves of the Valencian Arab population. Worthy of mention as an example of the rich heritage of the natural space , and a product of the settlement of the different civilisations, is the Fort de Bèrnia, a work of the Italian engineer Giovanni Battista Antonelli. It is a castle-fortress and lookout situated on the southern slopes of the Sierra de Bernia on terraces at a height of 850 metres. Also worth mentioning is the Torre de Bernia, on the summit of the mountain, which dates from the thirteenth century. More recent, but of high ethnological value, are the country houses, corrals and stone terraces related to the agricultural exploitation of the less steep areas and particularly representative of the peculiar mountainous landscape which characterises the area.

In summary, it is a space in which unique environmental and geomorphological characteristics converge, with a long history of human occupation, which has given place more recently to new and diverse ambients of exceptional importance in the context of the Valencia region.

It is said that the old name of the mountain range was Verdiola because of the greenness of the dense pine woods and the vegetation which covered it.

Cadastral data:

Partida: F. Escritura: Valor € Superficie Pol: Parcela: Referencia Catastral
Umbría de Bérnia 29/06/2008 16.000 € 13.789 m2 52 506 03041A052005060000J1
Umbría de Bérnia 29/06/2008 6.800 € 5.599 m2 52 147 3041A052004170000JM