In front of Huelva, possibly the oldest city in Western Europe, an estuary was born from the sea foam and the embrace of the rivers Odiel and Tinto whose waters have been plied by Phoenician and Greek boats, attracted by the gold and silver of the mythical Tartessos.
Thousands of years later, the discovery of the most important colony of European Spoonbills Platalea leucorodia in 1977 sparked a movement for the protection of this site. Then in 1983, the Odiel Marshes were declared as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO due to the importance of this area for wildlife and migratory birds. This fact encouraged the Andalusian Government to create the first “Paraje Natural” in this region. Besides, this area has been recognised as a Ramsar Site (International Wetlands Convention), Special Protection Area for Birds and Site of Community Importance by the European Union.