The Top 10 Lakes / Reservoirs in Spain

Spain is renowned for its historic culture and gorgeous food. However, if you are a nature lover and prefer to be lakeside rather than seaside, take a look at the beautiful lakes and reservoirs with amazing waterfalls and gorges all surrounded by forests and mountains.

Embalse del Negratín

This gorgeous reservoir will simply ‘take your breath away’. It is located in Freila, which is part of Andalucía’s Granada province. You can enjoy the waters either canoeing or on a sailing boat. Or why not relax at one of the lakeside restaurants.

Lago de Sanabria

Well most of you will have heard of the saying ‘That’s Zamora’! And this is where you will find this huge glacial lake. It is located 8km to the north west of Puebla de Sanabria and is actually in a Castile near Zamora. There is plenty to do here as the lake is in the Sanabria Lake Natural Park.

Estany de Banyoles

This is a beautiful lake near Gerona, and about a 90 minute drive from Barcelona. It probably takes 1 – 2 hours walk to get round the lake and see the natural beauty and stunning views. There is also a public beach near the Parc Draga.

Embalse de La Viñuela

This fabulous Lake is set in the stunning vicinity of Axarquia about an hour’s drive from Malaga. It is an extremely popular destination due to the idyllic surroundings and also boasts one of the best year-round climates! You can rent kayaks and paddle boards or just swim and relax.

Lagunas de Ruidera

This is actually a network of small lakes in the Campo de Montie and Ruidera area. It is perfect for nature lovers and outdoor sports fanatics. Do bring good walking shoes as it takes a while to stroll along the lake shores. There are plenty of really good lakeside cafes and restaurants.

Lagos de Covadonga

The Lakes of Covadonga are made up of two glacial lakes. The lakes receive thousands of visitors every year due to the beautiful setting. It is probably best to avoid July and August due to the crowds. In other months you can drive right up to the lakes. Do be aware the roads are really narrow in places with steep drops!


This reservoir has three beaches situated in the Provincial Parks of Garaio and Landa. Here you can sunbathe and swim and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. The Parks are equipped with drinking fountains, picnic areas and playgrounds. There are three car parks, an information centre and a bar-restaurant.

Embalse de Navacerrada

This beautiful lake is only 45 minutes away from Madrid; it is also home to Madrid’s only ski resort. The reservoir itself is located 1,200 metres above sea level and is surrounded by forests and mountains which were used for the backdrop of Ernest Hemingway’s film ‘For Whom the Bell Tolls’.

Embassament d’Ulldecona

This beautiful dam gets its name from the fact the construction was paid for by farmers from the town of Ulldecona. In summer, you can rent kayaks and scooters, or take a dip in the waters. If would you prefer a quieter spot, then head to the famous abandoned village of Mangraner at the reservoir’s north-west shore.

Embalse de Alange

The Alange’s reservoir is about 20km from Mérida. In winter months it is a haven for unusual birds – for all you tweeters out there! But of course, during the summer it is adapted for the tourism. The swimming area is located at the exit of Alange, and has an artificial sandy beach with plenty of companies offering water sports and even horseback riding.