Spain Has A Mysterious Red River Named Rio Tinto That Looks Like Its Straight Out Of Mars

by Natasha Monteiro
Spain Has A Mysterious Red River Named Rio Tinto That Looks Like Its Straight Out Of Mars

Our planet has a lot of mysteries surrounding it, and among them is a blood red river that flows through Spain called Rio Tinto. Located in southwestern Spain, the river ranges in shades from red to orange and makes for a stunning visual against the green & brown backdrop. But how does this river get its mysterious red colour? Well, read on!

Rio Tinto Red River In Spain

From A Melbourne Lake Turning Pink to the ice in Antarctica turning green, there’s a lot that’s happening in our world. But this red river in Spain is not a new phenomenon. In fact, it’s been flowing for ages and the locals are quite used to their ‘red river’. Strangely, it’s not the whole river thats red. It’s just a small 50 kilometre portion where the river turns into shades of red, plum & orange. This is somewhere near the town of Niebla, which has large amounts of ore and sulfide deposits. The chemical makeup of the ores & sulfides is extremely acidic, with extremely high levels of heavy metals & iron, causing the water to turn red.

The river itself flows for 100 kms, but its just one portion that makes the water red. After the 50 kilometre mark, the water goes back to its original colour and flows through to the Gulf of Cádiz at Huelva.

Also read: Part of Navi Mumbai’s Talawe Wetland Turns Into A Gorgeous Shade Of Pink!

Due to the high levels of acidity in the river, it’s not fit for consumption & only a certain type of microorganism classified as extremophiles thrive in these conditions. But don’t write off the river just yet! NASA scientists are exploring the river and conducting extensive studies on it as they think its properties are similar to the liquid found on Mars. How cool is that. We have our own little slice of Mars on Earth!

Best Time to Visit Rio Tinto

Well, if you do wish to visit Rio Tinto and take a trip through Southern Spain, the spring and fall months of April, May, June, September, October and November are the best time to visit. Other than Rio Tinto, you can also make a stop at the famous party destination of Ibiza, the Moorish fortress of Alhambra, Andalucía’s capital city Seville, Picasso’s birthplace Málaga, the resort town of Marbella and lots more!

Also read: La Sagrada Familia Church In Spain Has Been Under Construction For Last 137 Years