Cinque Terre National Park, Italy
The Cinque Terre National Park is the most densely populated national park in Italy, with almost 4,000 inhabitants on 3,868 hectares, distributed in five hamlets: Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso al Mare. The distinctive feature of Cinque Terre is the deeply anthropized landscape: in more than one thousand years, steep hill slopes have been sectioned to obtain stretches of land to cultivate, supported by drystone walls which extend for miles. This territory, precisely defined "The Park of Men", has become a World Heritage in 1997.
Garraf Natural Park, Catalonia, Spain
The Garraf Park is part of the Network of Natural Parks of the Diputació de Barcelona, whose special plan was adopted in 1986. The protected area covers 12,377 hectares and includes 9 municipalities. Calcareous stone makes up almost the entire massif of the Garraf and its climate is typically Mediterranean: rainfall in spring and autumn and mild temperatures. In recent years, the Park has been affected by two major fires: the 1982 fire, which covered 10,000 hectares, and the 1994 fire, which burned 4,300 hectares.
Despite the current depopulation, the 18th century was marked by an increase in the population, accompanied by a great expansion in the cultivation of grapes and wheat. It is estimated that 40% of the agricultural space was formed by dry stone walls. After the phylloxera plague (1879-1880), agricultural activity stopped and currently the area preserved with stone walls is only 3%.