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Galicia

Spain

A Corua
Lugo
Ourense
Pontevedra

CONTENTS
Introduction

Capital cities and towns


Santiago de Compostela
A Corua
Betanzos
Ferrol
Mondoedo
Lugo
Ourense
Tui
Pontevedra
Vigo

13
17
20
20
21
21
24
27
28
30

Touristic routes
The Monastery Route
32
Ras Baixas
34
Costa da Morte
35
Ras Altas and Maria Lucense 36
Ribeira Sacra
38
The Road to Santiago
40
Leisure and shows

Dublin

United Kingdom
London

Ireland

Paris

France

Cantabrian Sea

GALICIA

42
Madrid

Useful information

47

Portugal
Lisbon

Spain

Atlantic Ocean
Ceuta
Text:
Jos A. Ferreiro Pieiro
Translation:
Hilary Dyke
Layout:
OPCIN K,
Comunicacin Visual, S.L.
Photographs:
TURESPAA Picture Library,
TURGALICIA
Published by:
Turespaa
Secretara de Estado
de Comercio
y Turismo
Ministerio de Economa

Mediterranean
Sea
Melilla

Printed by:
Grafoffset, S. L.
D.L. M-00000-2000
NIPO: 380-01-031-X
Printed in Spain
First edition

Morocco

Cedeira

549

San Sadurnio

Ferrol

Neda

651

Moruxo

Mazaricos

Corredoiras

Negreira

Arza

Brin

547

Melide

Armenteira
Poio

Beariz

PONTEVEDRA

Sanxenxo

Isla de Ons

1014

A Pontenova

634

Aguete

Soutomaior

A-9

Moaa

Redondela

Cangas
Vigo

Islas Ces
PARQUE NATURAL
ISLAS CES

Bouzas

Baiona

A-55

Illano

Vilalba

640

Castro

Meira

Viladonga

A Fonsagrada

1029
Pradairo

LUGO
Nadela

Navia
de Suarna
Baralla

O Corgo

540

A Caiza
Vilasobroso

Tomio
A Guarda
Caminha
40 km
812

CARTOGRAFA: GCAR, S.L. Cardenal Silceo, 35


Tel. 914167341 - 28002 MADRID - AO 2000

VIANA DO CASTELO

San Vicente

Pantn

I Z
O

120

Santa Cristina
de Ribas de Sil

Xunqueira
de Amba

1373

Co
de O

Freixido

Puente de
Domingo Flrez

O Barco

Pea
Trevinca

A Veiga

2124

Viana do Bolo

P. N. MONTE
INVERNADEIRO

525

Pazos

Ribadelago

Baos
Santa Comba

A Gudia
1291
Pea Nofre

Vern

Santa Comba de Bande

Lobios

Baltar

1755

Puebla
de Sanabria

Laza
Cualedro

PARQUE NATURAL
BAIXA LIMIA - SERRA DO XURS

536

A Ra

z
d
Gabin 1707
M aci a ne
z
de Man

Vilar de Barrio

Cacabelos
Villafranca
del Bierzo
Carracedelo Ponferrada

Quiroga

A Pobra
de Trives

Xinzo
de Limia

Bande

Sierra

l
ure

Xunqueira de Castro
O Bolo
Espadanedo Caldelas
Manzaneda
Maceda Montederramo
1778
Baos
MANZANEDA
Manzaneda
de Molgas
o
Seixo

Santa
Eufemia

Allariz

Fabero

E L B I E R Z O

Vega de Valcarce
Pico
Piapaxaro
1607

Folgoso do
Courel

Sober
Nogueira de Ramun

A Merca

540

1415

Monforte
de Lemos

OURENSE

Celanova

Mono

Ferrera
Ribas de Mio Bveda do Incio

Esgos

1969
Miravalles

O Piornedo
ie A
S
s
O
Pedrafita
do Cebreiro

Vega de
Espinareda

Carbadelo
(A Barrela)

A-52

VI

Samos

Taboada

120

Celanova

Valena

Oia

Samos

Sarri

San Cristovo de Pombeiro


de Cea

Cortegada

Becerre

876

Monterroso

Arnoia
Cartelle
Meln

Ponteareas
Caldelas
de Tui
As Neves

Tui

Portomarn

Maside
San Amaro

Ventanueva

O Cadabo

Guntn
de Pallars

Oseira

Marentes

Castroverde

Friol

Chantada

Pesoz
Grandas

Meira

Paraxes

Pola
de Allende

Santa Eulalia
de Oscos

1262
Corraes

1575
Larouco

A Mezquita

Padornelo

532

Feces

BRAGANA

A BENAVENTE 76 km

S
PARQUE NATURAL
MONTE ALOIA

Oia

Mondariz
A-52

Nigrn O Porrio
Gondomar

O Carballio

Avin
Leiro
Ribadavia
1151 Meln

640

Boal

La Garganta

Rbade
Outeiro
de Rei

Oseira

Ponte-Caldelas San Clodio

550

Marn
Bueu

541

Combarro

30

Lourenz

I. de la Toja

Soutelo

S
I A

O Grove

Agolada

Navia

Coaa

Castropol

A LEN 119 km

Isla de Slvora

20

Vegadeo

1201

Tardade

Palas de Rei

Ramallosa
Noia
Louro
Merza
Padrn
Porto do Son
A Estrada
Castro de
Pontecesures
Barona
Rianxo
640
525
Silleda
Catoira
A Pobra Boiro
550
Laln
do Caramial Vilagarca
Cuntis
Bretal
Aciveiro
de Arousa
P. N.COMPLEJO DUNAR
A-9 Caldas
Forcarei
DE CORRUBEDO Y LAGUNAS
de Reis
DE CARREGAL Y VIXAN
Vilanova
Santa Uxia
Cerdedo
Cambados
de Ribeira

Lourenz

Cerceda

Muros

634

Ribadeo

Os Cabreiros

Sobrado dos Monxes

Santiago de
Compostela

A Serra Corveira
de Outes
Carnota

Portimouro

Dolmen de

641

Cabo Finisterre

634

Tapia
de Casariego

Barreiros

Guitiriz Baamonde

Sobrado
dos Monxes

Ordes

Fisterra

Teixeiro

Curtis

569

Emb. de
Fervenza

Cee

Benquerencia

Xistral

Mondoedo

Pontedeume
P. N. FRAGAS
Mio
DO EUME

G A L
A I C O

Dolmen Cabaleiros

Corcubin

10

As Pontes de
Garca Rodrguez

Caaveiro

Sada

Foz

1033

Ares

Santa Comba

Burela

Ferreira
(O Valadouro)

Ourol

Fene

A CORUA

r a
d e
ca
re s

Cervo

Viveiro

Atios

Porto do Barqueiro

Meirs

Mesn
do Vento

Dumbria

Valdovio

Cabo Prior

Vimianzo

Muxia

Estaca
de Bares

Ortigueira

A-9

Cabo Tourin

Cario

Malpica de
Oleiros
Cain Arteixo
Bergantios
Bergondo Monfero Monfero
Ponteceso
Rapadoiro
Laracha Viga Cambre
Betanzos Irixoa
Carballo
Carral
Laxe
Mabegondo
Coristanco
VI
550
Cerceda
Camarias Baio
595

Cabo Viln

Islas Sisargas

Cabo Ortegal

A S
R I
Cabo de San Adrin

A GIJN 94 km

Monument
Historical ruins
Nature Park
Nautical sports centre
Camp site
Golf course
Spa
Airport
Ski resort
World heritage site

Motorway
Expressway
National Road
Primary basic network road
Secondary basic network road
Local road
Railway
Road to Santiago
State hotel
Monasteries

Introduction
The country of Finis
Terrae and the way
of the stars
From the ages of darkness to the
discovery of America, the world
was flat. The sun came up in the
Orient, in the Empire of the Rising
Sun, and died in the Occident
(occidere, to kill), becoming fiery
red as it sank into the Atlantic. It
set over the Finis Terrae of the
Romans (where they erected the
ara solis, or altar to the sun), the
coast of the dead and the woods
of the Celtic Druids, the present
Costa de la Muerte, or Death Coast.
The rising and the setting of the
sun are two cosmic shows taking

Cape Finisterre. A Corua

place on the confines of the


continent of Eurasia. Every night,
hundreds of Chinese and tourists
climb to the top of the Tai Shan
mountain in eastern China to
watch the sun rise from among
the clouds beneath them.
Every evening for millions of
years, the Galician coastline
witnessed the drama of the
descent of the sun into the
shadowy sea, the sea of
unfathomable chasms which no
sailor was brave enough to ply.
Nowadays, however, the
observer enjoys the magnificent
beauty of a firmament flooded
in a symphony of orange, pink
and purple hues. Eventide is the
skys moment of glory, as the sun
sets and night falls.

The Milky Way also reaches


Finisterre. In prehistoric times,
this, the Way of the Stars, was
set between parallels 42 36
and 42 46 as a route of
civilisation from the
Mediterranean to the Atlantic,
clearly the result of the
advanced knowledge of
astronomy and astrology coming
from the cultures of the Middle
East. There are still
archaeological remains of this
route, along with a number of
place names deriving from the
word estrella, or star. Thus, on
both sides of the Catalonian
Pyrenees, we find Pic dEstelle,
Puig dEstelle, Puig de les Tres
Estelles and Les Esteilles; and, in
Navarra, both in Basque and in
Spanish: Estella or Lizarra, and
Lizarraga (star cluster).

and, on the grave of


Charlemagne, two rows of stars
point significantly in the
direction of Compostela.
Although the Road to
Santiago comes to an
end at Compostela,
some pilgrims carry
on to Finisterre as a
way of recalling the Way of the
Stars (the scallop, the shell
carried by the pilgrims, is a
maritime symbol of the goddess,
Venus).

Land and sea


For the millions of foreigners
who think that Spains
landscape is like the one
described in the Quixote and
for the millions of tourists who
are familiar with Mediterranean
Spain, Galicia is another world.
It is the land of the Atlantic, of
the thousand rivers, of leas and
autochthonous forests, with an
overwhelming assortment of
fresh, succulent shades of
green.

The symbolism of stars is


reflected in the discovery of the
tomb of St. James the Apostle,
or Apstol Santiago (a
motionless star drew the
attention of the eremite, Paio)

This is nature in its pure state,


the understructure of
biodiversity, with unique species
which can only be described as
metaphors: from the goose
barnacles, appearing like
geological gnarls on the seabeaten rocks, to the river
lamprey, a true, prehistoric,
living fossil, not to mention
the ecological wonder of

Ra de Corme y Laxe. A Corua

thousands of horses
roaming free in the
mountains.

With a
surface area of
30,000 km2, undulating
relief and wide valleys,
Galicia is the oldest land
on the Iberian Peninsula.
The high mountain
ranges, situated on
the eastern side, are
the result of tectonic
movements producing
the Cebreiro, Ancares,
O Caurel, Manzaneda
and Trevinca mountains,
with altitudes ranging
from 1,000 to 2,000
metres. Reminiscent of
Mount Olympus, it is
from these ranges that
rivers like the mighty Sil
come gushing down
through gorges and
canyons.
Below the lofty peaks
clad in oak, yew, beech,
hazel and holly, lies the
shoreline with its
Mediterranean-like
vegetation of mimosas,
camellias, gardenias,

orange, lemon and palm trees, set


against a background of leas
glistening in countless shades of
green, maize fields, woods of
chestnut, pine and birch, the furze
and the broom, and the
vineyards, with their rich spectrum
of colour where yellow blends
into red. Mingling in with all
these sights are the farming areas
of the traditional Galician
smallholdings: market gardens,
meadows, cereal fields, pastures
and wooded hills.
As the traveller reaches the
shore, further delights lie in
store along the 1,300 km of
coastline. To begin with, the
unusual geographical feature
known as the rias, broad inlets
forged by the sea. Found only in
Galicia, they constitute the most
interactive of symbioses
between sea and land, providing
unique biological conditions for
fish and shellfish and an
unbeatable setting for pleasure
sailing. Temperatures are mild:
between 18C and 23C in
summer and no lower than 8C
in winter.
However, the engaging, tender
beauty of the rias stands in
contrast with the open sea, a
contrast which is also reflected
in Galicias 700 beaches, where
there is a great difference
Cross at Finisterre

between the ones that are


exposed to the open sea and
those lining the rias, which are
peaceful and sheltered. The sand
is ideal in colour, going from
white to golden, bathed by
waves of all shapes and sizes:
anything from unruly breakers
for windsurfing and surfing to
gentle ripples. In terms of
environmental quality, every
year, about 40 Galician beaches
receive the European Blue Flag
award.
Another striking contrast is to
be found in the vast
sandbanks, such as the beach
at Carnota, stretching into
infinity, or the moving sand
dunes at Corrubedo in Ribeira
(A Corua), broken off here
and there by spectacular cliffs
like the ones belonging to the
Sierra da Capelada, where the
highest cliff in Europe, Vixa

Pallozas in O Cebreiro. Lugo

da Herbeira, with a sheer


drop of 612 metres, proudly
stands.
Lastly, several groups of islands,
surrounded by the turquoise
waters of the Atlantic Ocean,
are situated at outlets of the
Ras Baixas: the Ces, Ons and
Slvora by the rias of Vigo,
Pontevedra and Arousa, and the
Sisargas, just opposite the cape
known as Cabo San Adrin in
Malpica (A Corua). Of great
scenic beauty, the islands are
home to gods, octopus, seagulls
and cormorants and are the
coveted destination of summer
holidaymakers, day-trippers,
bird-watchers and yachtsmen.

A scattered population
and the art of travelling
Another of the special
characteristics of this land is that
its inhabitants, totalling nearly

Pazo de Oca. A Estrada. Pontevedra

three million (Galicia is the fifth


autonomous community in
terms of population), with a
density of 92.6 per km2, are
scattered into 30,000 population
nuclei, half of the overall figures
for Spain. Although part of the
rural population has been drawn
more recently by the industries
based in the towns and cities,
historically speaking, Galicias
population has tended to be
scattered.

the ferns. He may rest assured


that he will come across idyllic
spots which will arouse all his
senses, find himself visiting an
out-of-the-way Romanesque or
baroque church or plunged into
the merrymaking of a fiesta or a
popular fair.
When it is time for a meal, he is
advised to try one of the
traditional eating houses,
unpretentious yet welcoming
with their stews, fries and
casseroles. He must not be
surprised if the innkeeper, with a
somewhat peculiar sense of
salesmanship, starts complaining
that it is too late to serve food or
indeed, that there is none left.
Just nod and take a seat. You will
have a meal fit for a king!

In a world where no virgin


territory remains to be
discovered, Galicia offers the
traveller the excitement of
uncovering the secrets of its vast
terrain. To do this, he must leave
the motorways and venture onto
the regional roads that wind
their way round the mountains,
reduce speed to 40 or 50 km/h
and drive with the windows
down to take in the fresh smell
of the hay and the shadiness of

As for accommodation, you will


never be far away from one of
the 253 rural tourism hostels,
which have been tastefully

Fortified hamlet at Santa Tecla. Pontevedra

refurbished. Here, you will again


encounter the luxury of simplicity,
or the simplicity of luxury.

(paradores) or private hotels


and 34 are engaged in rural
tourism.

The traveller will also find


curious features that form an
inherent part of the Galician
countryside: pazos (ancestral
homes), hrreos (granaries) and
cruceiros (crosses).

The hrreo, a typical


construction in the area, is used
to ripen and dry maize. Some of
them, like the ones at Carnota
and Lira, measure up to 35
metres in length. At Combarro,
there is a varied group of these
granaries, lined up in perfect
formation as they overlook the
Pontevedra ria.

Pazos (from the Latin palatium)


are an original type of ancestral
home. A total of 640 have been
catalogued, some of which are
in the towns, although the
majority are situated here and
there in the country areas. All
styles are to be found, baroque
being the commonest. However,
at the very least, they all have a
small garden, a chapel, an
hrreo or a dovecote. Some of
them operate as state hotels

Cruceiros have existed since


the thirteenth century at
crossroads, the porticoes of
churches, anywhere, in fact, as
the commemoration of a
misfortune or an expression of
gratitude. Elaborate or plain,
they are used as places of
worship, meeting points or a

spot to go and have a chat. The


most noteworthy cruceiro is the
one at Ho, Cangas
(Pontevedra) and the oldest,
dating back to the fourteenth
century, is to be found at
Melide (A Corua), on the Road
to Santiago.

History and signs of


identity
In the period between the sixth
and ninth centuries B.C., IndoEuropean peoples, with some
Celtic traces, arrived in Galicia.
The bulk of the Celts, however,
would not appear until the fifth
and fourth centuries B.C., when
they settled in the westernmost
regions of Europe.
The dolmens, a form of tomb
found all over Galicia, belong to
the Neolithic period, while the
petroglyphs, or rock carvings,
now enthusiastically reproduced
because of the popularity of
Celtic symbology, go back to the

Petroglyphs at Mogot. Pontevedra

Bronze Age. The culture of the


castros, or fortified hamlets,
also dates back to the Bronze
Age, reaching its height in the
Iron Age and lasting through
Roman domination, that is, a
full millennium. The most
spacious, best excavated ones
are at Baroa (A Corua), on a
peninsula jutting out
spectacularly into the ocean; at

Granary at Carnota. A Corua

Santa Tegra, at the outlet of the


River Mio; and at Viladonga, at
Castro de Rei, Lugo.
So it happened that, since the
times of dolmen culture, down
through the Romanesque and the
baroque, stone became Galicias
most representative building
material. It is seen in city buildings
and on the streets paved with
granite slabs, so typical of Galicias
towns. Galician granite was used
on the facades of the European
Parliament building at Strasbourg,
the Council of Ministers premises
at Brussels and the city halls of
Tokyo and A Corua.
Romes legacy included
constructions, walls, roadways,
bridges, lighthouses, baths, in
addition to law and the soft
cadence of the Galician language.
Galicia was enormously
influenced by Roman culture.
Nevertheless, the Celtic and the
Roman reflect two opposing
influences: fantasy and realism,

Atlantic mists and Mediterranean


sunlight. It is perhaps because
Galicia is an Atlantic rather than
a Mediterranean land that
historians like Murgua exalted
the Celtic, non-Latin aspect as the
foundation of its historical
personality. Later considered as
being overloaded with
romanticism and myth, this thesis
was reviewed.
Then again, the Celtic reappears
sporadically, forming part of the
cultural identity of Ireland,
Scotland, Wales, Cornwall,
Brittany.... with bagpipe music,
now at the height of popularity,
and fantastic literature. Galician
bagpipers play their part in this
Celtic show, blowing with
determination to attain the 70
decibels of their highly
demanding instruments. The
oral tradition common to these
peoples lives on, enveloped in
magic and mystery, spells,
apparitions, fantastic beings,
absences, nostalgia, all of which
are the themes of endless

Meloxo. Ra de Arousa. Pontevedra

Monastery of Santa Mara.


Armenteira. Pontevedra

Shrine of As Ermidas.
Ourense

popular legends from Santa


Compaa to San Andrs de
Teixido, the shrine which is most
highly revered in ancient legends
and animistic cults: thither you
must go alive as otherwise, you
will go as a dead man turned
into an animal, perhaps a
reptile. Among the varied forms
of Galician literature is the one
known as exalted fantasy,
where there is no frontier
between the lived and the
dreamed. lvaro Cunqueiro is its
greatest exponent.

It is from this period that the rich


legacy of Romanesque
architecture and sculpture
comes.
The fifteenth century witnessed
the revolt of the Irmandios, when
the bourgeoisie and the peasantry
rose up against the feudal lords,
assaulting their castles. Although
the lords property was
guaranteed by the Catholic
Sovereigns, they lost responsibility
for justice and their fortresses
were rendered ineffective. While a
few castles have been conserved,
the majority are in ruins, bearing
witness to this period.

In the Middle Ages, from the


days of the first Compostelan
archbishop, Diego Gelmrez,
Santiago became one of Europes
leading cultural centres on
account of the pilgrimages.
At the same time, a burgeoning
urban network appeared, along
with a class of tradesmen and
craftsmen in towns and hamlets.

In the seventeenth century, the


population grew with the
arrival of maize and the potato
from Spanish America. Rustic
property in the hands of the
Church and the nobles was
rented out to the peasants,

giving rise to the longstanding


smallholding system, which
todays traveller will observe in
an unmistakable landscape.
With the eighteenth century
came a boom in maritime
trading, the textile industry and
fish-salting, while the Marquis
of Sargadelos built the first blast
furnace of Spains industrial
revolution. In Santiago, the
Churchs high income enhanced
the remarkable flourishing of
Galician baroque and the
ubiquitous appearance of pazos.

the cities and industrial areas,


now backed by an efficient
communications network.
Galicia is now one of the three
historical communities in the
total 17 autonomous
communities created under the
Spanish Constitution of 1978. In
its Autonomous Statutes, passed
in 1980, two official languages,
Galician and Spanish, are
established, together with the
scopes of responsibility of the
autonomous government and
parliament.

The smallholding system, high


population density and poor
communications for the transport
of products to the exterior
triggered massive emigration
from Galicia in the nineteenth
and twentieth centuries,
subsequently replaced by an
exodus from the countryside to

Nature for mountain


and park-lovers,
ornithologists
and backpackers
Mountainous areas
The highest mountain ranges are
Sierra de Os Ancares and
O Courel (Lugo), and the massifs

Coat of arms of the Autonomous


Community of Galicia

10

Bird-watching on Isla del Faro. Islas Ces. Pontevedra.

of Manzaneda and Trevinca


(Ourense). Manzaneda boasts a ski
resort while Os Ancares is known
for its national hunting reserve.

Nature parks
There are six nature parks in all:
the group of sand dunes at
Corrubedo and the lakelets of
Carregal and Vixn, situated in
Ribeira (A Corua); Baixa Limia
Serra do Xurs (Ourense); the
Ces Islands, facing the Vigo ria;
Monte Aloia (Tui, Pontevedra):
Fragas do Eume, in the valley of
the River Eume, accessible by the
road from Pontedeume
(A Corua); and Monte
Invernadeiro, close by the Sierra
de Manzaneda (Ourense).

All four mountain chains, with


their beauty spots and
autochthonous forests, are ideal
for backpacking and climbing.
Teixedal de Casaio, in Trevinca, is
the finest yew forest in the south
of Europe.
In Os Ancares, O Piornedo has
been officially declared a
historical-cultural ensemble on
account of its pallozas, prehistoric
dwellings with Celtic traces. In a
primitive economy, the palloza
would be home, stable and store
all at the same time. Oval in
shape, a tall framework of
wooden beams stands on a low
stone wall, with a thatched roof
of straw made from rye.

Bird-watching
The craggy coasts of A Corua
draw the migratory birds that fly
in from the ocean: terns,
seagulls, gannets and
cormorants, perching on tiny
bits of jutting rock before
soaring into the skies. Estaca de
Bares and Cabo Viln are the

11

strategic bird-watching points,


both of which have been
declared natural reserves of
national interest.
In the ecosystems of marshlands
and coastal estuaries, the
commonest birds are ducks,
coots, oyster catchers, curlews
and cranes.

Backpacking routes
In Galicia, eight long walks have
been catalogued in compliance
with international standards,
along with 27 short ones, i.e., no
longer than 50 km, taking less
than two days.

Cathedral. Santiago de Compostela

Capital cities
and towns
The capitals of the four provinces
are: A Corua, Lugo, Ourense and
Pontevedra. The capitals of the
Ancient Kingdom of Galicia are
seven in total: Santiago de
Compostela, A Corua, Betanzos,
Mondoedo, Lugo, Ourense and
Tui. The circle is completed with
two more recently developed
towns: Vigo and Ferrol.

Colegio Fonseca. Santiago de Compostela

Santiago de
Compostela
It is one of the three cities to
represent the history of Spain as a
confluence of three civilisations:
Santiago, the city of stone,
European, Romanesque and
baroque, symbolising the Christian
world; Granada, the symbol of
Moslem culture; and Toledo, the
Christian, Arabic and Jewish all in
one.

Pazo de Raxoi. Santiago de Compostela

A visit to this city, where it is just as


likely to be rainy as it is to be sunny
or changeable, starts off at the
cathedral (1). With its eleventh
century Romanesque structure,
complete with triple nave, apse
and radiating chapels, the triforium
and the sculptures, it is the acme of
pilgrims temples. Of particular
note is the Prtico de la Gloria,
the most finely finished
iconographic monument of
mediaeval sculpture. It is the work
of Maestro Mateo, also responsible
for the mediaeval stone choir, most
of which has just been rebuilt.
Beneath the high altar, the crypt
contains the remains of the Apostle

Declared by UNESCO as a world


heritage site and as Cultural City
of Europe in the year 2000,
Santiago has a university that
dates back five centuries. The
capital of the Autonomous
Community of Galicia, it is now
undergoing a period of urban
expansion and cultural enrichment,
with the founding of new museums
and the birth of the Royal
Philharmonic Orchestra of Galicia.

13

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Tourist information office

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Parque de la Herradura
Colegio de San Clemente
Pazo de Bendaa
Church of Santa Mara Salom
University
Church of San Fiz de Solovio
Church of San Agustn
Convent of Santo Domingo de
Bonaval
22 Centro Gallego de Arte
Contemporneo
23 Church of San Miguel dos Agros
24 Museo de las Peregrinaciones
25 Collegiate Church of Santa
Mara la Real del Sar

Seminario
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Pazo de Raxoi
Colegio de San Jernimo
Pazo de Gelmrez
Colegio Fonseca
Casa del Cabildo (Town Hall)
Casa de la Parra
Casa de los Cannigos
Convent of San Paio de
Antealtares
11 Casa de la Troya
12 Monastery of San Martn
Pinario
13 Convent of San Francisco

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in a beautiful silver urn. In the


museum, a huge censer, known as
the botafumeiro, is kept. At
liturgical festivities, the censer is
swung spectacularly down the
transept up to the topmost point
of the vault.
Unlike other cathedrals, hemmed
in by a maze of narrow streets,
Santiago Cathedral stands amid
spacious squares: Obradoiro,
Plateras, Quintana and
Azabachera.
In Obradoiro, the squares gradient
is accentuated by the
horizontalness of its other
monuments: the fifteenth century,
plateresque Hospital de
Peregrinos (2), now a state hotel
with a superb chapel and inner
courtyards; the neoclassic, Frenchflavoured Pazo de Raxoi (3); the
Colegio de San Jernimo (4),
now the university rectory, with a
fifteenth century frontispiece and
a cloister; and the Romanesque
Pazo de Gelmrez (5). This wealth

of styles is made complete with the


Renaissance Colegio Fonseca (6)
and its splendid cloister and turret.
Las Plateras boasts the oldest of
the frontispieces, belonging to
twelfth century Romanesque.
Opposite stands the baroque Casa
del Cabildo (7), or town hall.
In the square known as Plaza de
Quintana, the cathedrals holy
door (Puerta Santa), opened only
in Holy Years, is situated. Close at
hand, the imposing Torre del Reloj
forms part of a triple baroque
ensemble in conjunction with
Casa de la Parra (8) and Casa
de los Cannigos, crowned by
graceful chimneys (9). The
sharpest counterpoint lies in the
bare paving covering this huge
square, the straight flight of steps
running across it and the austere,
solid, endless wall of the Convent
of San Paio de Antealtares (10).
For contrast, the visitor is advised
to go round San Paio and its

Colegio de San Jernimo. Santiago de Compostela

Collegiate Church of Santa Mara la


Real del Sar. Santiago de Compostela

sacred art museum and then


round the nearby Casa de la
Troya (11), where the student
atmosphere still prevails.
Lastly, Azabachera. The facade is
baroque, with a neoclassic
influence. Opposite stands the
second most important
monument after the cathedral,
the Benedictine monastery of
San Martn Pinario (12), now a
seminary. With a baroque church
and an astonishing open high
altar of unique beauty, the
monastery flaunts a host of
styles. Not far away is the
Convent of San Francisco (13),
with a spacious baroque and
neoclassic church and hostel.

A second route might well begin


at Parque de la Herradura (14),
where the best panoramic view of
the city is to be had. As we come
out, we find ourselves admiring
the well-balanced factory of the
seventeenth century Colegio de
San Clemente (15), to take a
stroll afterwards round Plaza del
Toral, with its baroque Bendaa
pazo (16), towards the colonnades
of Ra do Vilar and Ra Nova,
where the twelfth century
Romanesque Church of Santa
Mara Salom (17) is situated.
The neoclassic structure of the
university (18) contrasts with the
hustle and bustle of the
neighbouring marketplace,
wedged between two churches,
the Romanesque San Fiz de
Solovio (19) and the baroque San
Agustn (20). Going along Ruela
das nimas, we enter another
world, one of pazos and churches
from the sixteenth to the
eighteenth centuries, to come out
at the convent known as Santo
Domingo de Bonaval (21),
Aerial view of the port. A Corua

Collegiate Church of Santa Mara do Campo. Tower of Hercules. A Corua


A Corua

A Corua

housing the Ethnographic Museum


Do Pobo Galego. The convent
church contains the mausoleum of
distinguished Galicians. Adjacent,
the Centro Gallego de Arte
Contemporneo (22), by the
architect lvaro Siza, provides the
ensemble with a second, more
modern identity.

This is the open, cosmopolitan city


par excellence, where nobody is
a stranger. It is of fervent liberal
tradition, showing a spirit of
modernity in its urban structures
and life styles. The people of A
Corua have always lived in
harmony with their city.

In the surrounding area, there is a


rich store of seventeenth and
eighteenth century convents. Back
in the centre again, the infinite
spectrum of styles is embodied in
the neoclassic Church of San
Miguel dos Agros (23) and the
Pazo Don Pedro or Gothic House,
which accommodates the Museo
de las Peregrinaciones (24).

The old town is like a closely-knit


Romanesque ecosystem,
consisting of the Church of
Santiago (1), the oldest; the
Church of Santa Mara do
Campo (2), with its attractive
portico; and the Convent of
Santa Brbara (3), forming
another unusual small square. The
house/museum of the writer,
Emilia Pardo Bazn, the neoclassic
palace where the military
headquarters, Capitana General,
are located, the baroque
Convent of Santo Domingo (4),
the romantic Garden of San
Carlos, where the tomb of the
English general, Sir John Moore, is
situated, and the Military
Museum (5), all stand as proof of
a citys steady, historical evolution
from a mediaeval outpost.

Outside the city, it is a must to


visit the Collegiate Church of
Santa Mara la Real del Sar
(25), a Romanesque gem
renowned for the unusual leaning
pillars that support the naves.
www.citcompostela.es
www.santiagodecompostela.org
www.xacobeo.es
www.aytocompostela.es

17


7


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7 Tower of Hercules
8 Casa de los Peces (Aquarium) 18

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Casa del Hombre (Domus)


Casa de las Ciencias and Planetarium
Fine Arts Museum
Church of las Capuchinas
Church of San Nicols
Church of San Jorge
Palacio Municipal
Tourist information office

The visitor may enjoy a ride along


the Paseo Martimo, or
promenade, which encircles the
city centre, by taking one of the
tourist trams that run on
Saturdays and holidays all year
round and every day in summer.
Starting at the Castillo de San
Antn (6), a sixteenth century
fortress and history and
archaeology museum, the tram
continues to Torre de Hrcules
(7), the only lighthouse of Roman
origin still in operation. Next, on
to Casa de los Peces, or the
aquarium (8), and Casa del
Hombre, or Domus (9), which,
together with the science
museum, Casa de las Ciencias,
and the planetarium (10), located
in Parque Santa Margarita, exhibits
the latest discoveries about the
sea, mankind and the world.

Promenade. A Corua

Plaza de Mara Pita. A Corua

A third trip combines the fine arts


museum, Museo de Bellas Artes
(11), the baroque Churches of
Las Capuchinas (12), San Nicols
(13) and San Jorge (14) with the
Palacio Municipal (15), in the
impressive Plaza de Mara Pita. We
finish off with a delightful stroll
along Marina and its typical
windowed galleries, Calle Real,
past the obelisk to arrive at one of
the best areas for inns and tapas
bars, the streets known as Estrella,
Olmos and Galera.

Domus. A Corua

Galician Symphonic Orchestra, the


headquarters of the Pedro Barri
de la Maza Foundation, the Unin
Fenosa Museum of Contemporary
Art and Monte San Pedro, just
reconditioned to provide a
spectacular view of the entire city.

More recent examples of


A Coruas cultural and touristic
activities are to be found in the

www.dicoruna.es
www.turismocoruna.com
19

Church of San Francisco. Betanzos

Cathedral Church of de San Xulin.


Ferrol

Betanzos

distinguishing feature is a branch


of bay leaves hanging on the
door.

One of the seven capitals of the


Kingdom of Galicia and a
historical-artistic ensemble, the
town is situated at the back end of
the Betanzos ria, where the water
of the sea meets the fresh waters
of the Mandeo and Mendo rivers.

www.betanzos.net/html/indice.htm

Ferrol
Because of its ideal conditions as a
natural harbour, Ferrol became the
main shipyard in the north of
Spain and the location of the
navys maritime department. In the
past, two large castles poised on
the narrow mouth of the ria made
it invulnerable to attacks by sea.

Betanzos character has been


created by three Gothic
churches: Santiago, Santa
Mara do Azogue and lastly, San
Francisco, which contains the
most charismatic of mediaeval
tombs, such as that of Prez de
Andrade, held up by the two
animals which were the symbol
of his lineage, the wild boar and
the bear. Also worthy of note are
the pazos known as Bendaa,
Taboada and Torre Lanxs, not
forgetting a somewhat surprising
park, O Pasatempo, whose
builders, emigrants returning
from Spanish America, were a
few steps ahead of the modern
concept of the theme park.

A new city of neoclassic design,


unique in Galicia, was created, with
straight, parallel streets. The
neoclassic is also found in the
Cathedral Church of San Xulin,
the Church of San Francisco and
the Chapels of Dolores and
Angustias. From the park known
as Jardines de Herrera, situated
between the state hotel and
Capitana, or military headquarters,
a full view of the city is to be
enjoyed and, just three km away, in
Serantes, the ria may be surveyed
from the Church of Chamorro.

Finally, we must taste the light,


fruity wine of Betanzos at any of
the rustic taverns, whose only
20

Galicia for sacred art. The


seventeenth century bishops
palace is also of interest.
The visitor should fall in with the
slow pace of the area surrounding
the cathedral to admire the
superb instances of nineteenth
and twentieth century civil
architecture, the magnificent
Fuente Vieja, the small Jewish
quarter, the seminary and the
eighteenth century pazo, now
used as the town hall. He should
also find the time to go round
two rather quaint districts: los
Remedios and los Molinos.

Cathedral of Mondoedo

The military facilities at Los


Arsenales, where there is also an
interesting naval museum, should
not be forgotten, nor should the
visitor miss the boat trips to
Mugardos (Castillo de A Palma)
and to the Castillo de San
Felipe, or the cruises along the ria
in summer.

www.diputacionlugo.org/indice.html

www.ferrol-concello.es

Lugo
In no other Spanish city is the
legacy of the Romans more
compelling. The wall was built at
the time of the Roman Empire on
the juridical convent of Lucus
Augusta, one of three in the vast
province of Gallaecia. The others
are at Astorga, Len and Braga,
Portugal. Thus Lugo is the oldest
urban settlement in Galicia.

Mondoedo
Situated in the wide, open valley
pointing towards the Cantabrian
Sea, Mondoedo is one of the
most evocative capitals of the
Ancient Kingdom of Galicia. At
the cathedral, now a national
monument, the primitive
Romanesque frontispiece with its
exquisite rose window and the
baroque towers are still in a good
state of preservation. In the
interior too, there is a
combination of styles: a ribbed
vault supported by pointed
arches, murals from the fifteenth
and sixteenth centuries and a
baroque high altarpiece. The
museum is perhaps the best in

The Roman wall (1) at Lugo, now


a world heritage site, is the only
one whose perimeter remains in
tact. It is a formidable military
construction about 10 metres high
and 4-5 metres wide, forming a
circle of almost 2.5 km, a walk
which should be completed by
anyone visiting the town. The wall
21

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1 Roman wall
2 Cathedral
3 Bishops Palace
4 City Hall
5 Church of San Francisco
6 Provincial Museum
7 Parque Rosala de Castro
Cathedral. Lugo

Tourist information office

22
City Hall. Lugo

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Roman Wall. Lugo

distinguishes Lugo from any other


city as a reminder of an ancient
civilisation and as a privileged
vantage point from which to admire
the squares, streets and panoramic
views. From here, the visitor may go
on an imaginary tour of the
citys roofs and peep down onto
patios, interior gardens, small
market gardens, windowed
galleries, kitchens... Lugo is not
known for privacy.
It is inside this walled enclosure,
now pedestrianised, that the tour
of the city takes place, starting off
at the cathedral (2) with its
magnificent neoclassic facade.

The triforium and the three naves


are flooded in the humid
penumbra that is so peculiar to
Galician Romanesque, heightened
in the walnut choir which was
elaborately carved by Francisco de
Moure. Then there is the
polychrome granite statue of the
patron saint, Virgen de los Ojos
Grandes, standing in the fifteenth
century chapel of the same name.
The virgins face reflects the
vigour and freshness of a Galician
peasant girl. A splendid piece of
architecture is to be admired on
the north facade, with an ogival
portico and a majestic, thirteenth
century Pantocrator.
River Mio. Lugo

Cathedral. Lugo

Roman bridge. Ourense

The style of the facades of the


Bishops Palace (3) and the City
Hall (4) is a sober, well-balanced
baroque. Passing the wine and
tapas bar area, Calle da Cruz,
Plaza do Campo and Ra Nova,
we arrive at the Gothic Church of
San Francisco (5) and the
Provincial Museum (6), where
there are interesting pieces from
Roman and Pre-Roman times
(torques by Burela and Viladonga)
and from primitive Christianity (a
labarum by Quiroga), together
with ethnological displays and
collections of paintings.

the delicacy of the relief, the


feminine dances, the vault,
columns and pond, and is left
with a taste of mystery which
makes the trip all the more
exciting.
www.fegamp.es/clugo.htm
www.lugonet.com
www.diputacionlugo.org/indice.html

Ourense
Ourense is the capital city of the
province with the greatest
number of catalogued
monuments belonging to the
Artistic Heritage of Spain. The
city grew up round the Roman
bridge (1) and Las Burgas (2),
hot springs held in such great
esteem by the Romans.
Originally a crossroads and
resting place, the city thus began
its march through history.
The bridge, an architectural
wonder, crosses the River Mio
as it flows along to form part of
the cityscape. At La Burga de
Abaixo, the nineteenth century
neoclassic fountain, complete
with three figures and jets, is
well worth a visit while, at

Outside the city, the park named


after Rosala de Castro (7)
affords a full view of the River
Mio Valley and its spa, where hot
springs flow into Roman baths.
Just 10 km along the Santiago
road, there is a short turn-off
leading to Bveda, the most
enigmatic of Galicias sights. No
precise information is available
about its date (somewhere
between the fourth and seventh
centuries), or about its purpose: is
it a nymphaeum, a spa, a
memorial? The visitor is struck by
24

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La Burga de Arriba, the


seventeenth century common
fountain is to be admired.

At the Archaeological Museum


(4), housed in what used to be the
Bishops Palace, now with a
Baroque frontispiece, the visitor will
find interesting collections, from the
Palaeolithic to the castro culture,
both Roman and mediaeval, along
with some Renaissance works. At
the top of the nearby flight of
steps, he will see the Church of
Santa Mara Madre (5), in an
exquisite baroque style.

The old town: the space now


occupied by Plaza Mayor was
once a field where fairs were
held. Other squares have been
named after the produce sold at
the various fairs: do Trigo (wheat),
do Ferro (iron), do Sal (salt). The
City Hall (3) boasts a classicalstyle facade, a low portico and an
inset balcony, all finished off with
a coat of arms and a clock.

We enter the cathedral (6) by the


south door, which is of particular
interest as an example of the
Romanesque moving towards the
Gothic, together with other, later
styles. The Prtico del Paraso,
complete with its original
polychromy, brings to mind the
Prtico de la Gloria at Santiago
Cathedral. The ornate Chapel of
Santo Cristo, a reflection of
impressive realism, and the high
altarpiece, are masterpieces.
When leaving the cathedral, one
should pause a while to admire
the spectacular dome above the

Street in old town. Ourense

26

tempted to stroll along the streets


and go down to the River Arnoia.
Close by is the fascinating
Romanesque Church of Santa
Mara de Augas Santas.
www.inorde.com

Tui
Church of Santa Eufemia. Ourense

transept. The surrounding area is


also the epicentre of social life for
the young people of Ourense.
The baroque facade of Santa
Eufemia, next to one of Galicias
most noteworthy Renaissance
palaces, Oca-Valladares (7), and
the Cloister of San Francisco
(8), a historical-artistic monument,
should most certainly be included
on the visitors itinerary.
Just 21 km along the Madrid road
stands age-old Allariz, where the
Romanesque Church of Santiago
and the Real Monasterio de Santa
Clara, with a baroque cloister, are
to be found. The visitor is

Situated by the River Mio, which


marks the border with Portugal,
Tui is a historical-cultural
ensemble and one of the capitals
of the Ancient Kingdom of
Galicia. The outward appearance
of border towns is always
hardened by the friction arising at
frontier posts and, in the case of
Tui, this was aggravated by the
Moslem razzias and the Norman
raids. Thus it became a fortified,
walled town, with a cathedral
which is reminiscent of a castle.
At night, when this cathedralcum-fortress is lit up, the sight of
it from the Portuguese side of the
Mio is quite spectacular.
Of special interest are the Church
of San Telmo and the Convents of
Cathedral. Tui

San Francisco, Monjas Encerradas


and Las Clarisas (belonging to the
Order of St. Clare). At Santo
Domingo, the baroque altarpieces
are astonishing: the one
portraying the Battle of Lepanto
is beyond description.
The narrow, old quarter, with its
mediaeval atmosphere, is full of
pretty nooks and crannies,
emblazoned houses and remains
of the wall. The area affords
splendid views of the Mio and
Portuguese riverbank, as indeed
does the nearby nature park
known as Monte Aloia, of great
scenic value.
www.riasbaixas.org

Pontevedra
Pontevedra (from ponte vella),
situated at the back end of the ria
of the same name, at the
confluence with the River Lrez,
had its heyday from the
thirteenth to the sixteenth

centuries, when the port was alive


with vessels carrying fish and
other goods and the business
activities of craftsmen and
merchants prospered inside the
walled enclosure.
With the disappearance of both
port and wall, in the old quarter,
the splendour of former times has
waned, leaving in its wake a
number of striking religious
monuments and an ensemble of
civil architecture replete with
colonnades, squares, pazos,
emblazoned houses and simple
dwellings built of hewn stone. It
is all admirably preserved, making
for a delightful provincial capital
to be enjoyed by all.
A tour of the city might start at
Plaza de Espaa (1), where
elegant nineteenth century
buildings are occupied by the
local corporation and the
provincial council, contrasting
evocatively with the ruins of
Santo Domingo (2), which date

View of Marn

Shrine of La Peregrina.
Pontevedra

Plaza da Lea. Pontevedra

Puente de
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Barn, now a state hotel (6).


Close by is the Renaissance
Basilica of Santa Mara (7).
www.riasbaixas.org
www.concellopontevedra.es
www.fegamp.es/Cpontevedra
Basilica of Santa Mara. Pontevedra

back to the fourteenth century


and are now classified as a
national monument. Then comes
the shrine dedicated to La
Peregrina (3), the patron saint of
Pontevedra, with a slender
baroque facade. Not far away are
Plaza da Ferrera, surrounded by
remarkable buildings, and the
Gothic Convent of San Francisco
(4). The Provincial Museum (5),
the most comprehensive of its
kind in Galicia and one of the
most exceptional in Spain, is
housed in four buildings adjoining
the typical Plaza da Lea.
As we wend our way through
other squares, da Pedreira, da
Verdura, de Mndez Nez, do
Teucro and Cinco Calles (where
there is an eye-catching cruceiro),
we reach the pazo, Casa do

Vigo
A new town which has evolved
over the last 150 years, Vigo is
now Galicias most densely
populated city. A nucleus of
magnificent modernist buildings
standing against a background of
spectacular mountain scenery,
spattered right to the top with
cottages and tiny farms, is the
focal point of the conurbation.
A busy, lively city, Vigo has, from
its beginnings, drawn its strength
from an excellent natural harbour,
a fishing and canning industry,
shipbuilding and, more recently,
the car industry.
To acquire an insight into this
world, the first thing to do is to
stand and survey it from the
superb look-out points, or
miradores, at O Castro and
A Gua. Another unforgettable

sight may be enjoyed by


passengers on the express train
from Madrid as, in the glow of
the early morning sun, it
approaches the Bay of Vigo,
which unfolds before ones eyes
like a revelation.
The visitor should commence his
tour at the port, where boats
depart for the nature park,
Parque Natural de las Islas
Ces, Cangas (with its fine
beaches) and Moaa. Just by the
port is the old fishermens district,
Berbs, and the market, Mercado
da Pedra, with pavement stalls
selling oysters and seafood. It is
also worth visiting the cathedral
church and its wealth of mosaics.
In the triangle formed by Puerta
del Sol Coln Urziz, the
splendid architecture of modern
building is to be admired, the most
representative construction being
the Garca Barbn Cultural Centre
by the architect, Antonio Palacios.

View of the old town. Vigo

collection is on display, together


with paintings going from
European baroque to the best of
modern Galician painting. The
gallery is encircled by Parque de
Castrelos, made up of engaging
neoclassic gardens with trees over
a hundred years old.
www.riasbaixas.org
www.vigoc.es

At the museum, Pazo-Museo


Quiones de Len, an
impressive archaeological
Ra de Vigo

Touristic
routes
The Monastery
Route
Leaving to one side the
monasteries situated in the 10
cities described so far, we shall now
take a look at those of greatest
interest in each province. All
of them are situated in places of
extraordinary beauty, in age-old
woods and fertile valleys, on
riverbanks or looking out to sea.

A CORUA
One of the great Galician
monasteries, Sobrado dos
Monxes, in the lands of Melide, is
the oldest Cistercian abbey in
Spain. Visiting it is like going on a
journey in time, passing through
the twelfth century chapter house
and kitchen, the
Renaissance vestry and
the monumental
baroque church, with a
sumptuously
decorated facade.
There is also a
hostel.

Nestling in the nature park,


Fragas do Eume, the crumbling
outward appearance of the
monasteries of Caaveiro and
Monfero has a strong romantic
flavour about it, accentuated by
the age of Caaveiro (tenth
century) and the majestic interior
of Monfero, where the baroque
church is in a better state of
upkeep and the Renaissance
cloister has been restored.

LUGO
Another of the great monasteries,
Samos, is an obligatory stoppingoff place on the Road to Santiago.
Belonging to the Benedictine Order
since the twelfth century, it is a
mixture of styles, harmoniously
combining Romanesque, Gothic,
Renaissance and baroque structures.
Meira and Lourenz differ in
style. The church at Meira is a
gem of Romanesque and
Renaissance architecture, while
Lourenz is baroque. Meira is 35
Sobrado dos Monxes.
A Corua

Monastery of Celanova. Ourense

Monastery of Samos. Lugo

km from Lugo, on the N-640 road.


Lourenz is just 12 km from
Mondoedo.

For a taste of contrast between an


imposing monastery and a small,
primitive church, stepping back in
time to the Visigothic period of the
seventh century, the traveller should
make his way to Santa Comba de
Bande, where an unrepeatable
experience awaits him.

OURENSE
Oseira is 34 km from Ourense
and is reached by the Cea turn-off
on the N-525 road. Founded by
Cistercian monks in the twelfth
century, it features a Romanesque
church with three naves, a
transept and an elaborate chancel
consisting of five chapels. With
the air of a cathedral, it boasts an
arresting baroque facade. The
chapter house is a reflection of
the transition from Gothic to
Renaissance and the various
buildings are linked by three
cloisters. There is also a hostel.

Santo Estevo and Santa Cristina


de Ribas de Sil are situated on the
Ribeira Sacra. At San Estevo, one
senses magnificence and power.
The church, of delicate, Cistercian
design, has two high altarpieces,
one Renaissance and the other,
Romanesque, built of stone. The
monasterys interior is enhanced by
three magnificent cloisters.
At Santa Cristina, somewhat
smaller in size, the attractive
Romanesque church and the
remains of the Renaissance cloister
overhang a steep slope. The
unusual bell tower would seem to
levitate over the treetops of the
chestnut forest which keeps the
monastery from view.

Celanova, 23 km from Ourense


along the N-540 road, started off
in the tenth century as a retreat
for coenobites and a remarkable
Mozarabic chapel still stands
today as a reminder of that time.
The chapel is concealed amid the
splendour of the new Benedictine
monastery, commenced in 1506. It
has a baroque frontispiece, a
prepossessing choir and profusely
decorated cloisters. There is also a
hostel.

San Clodio (Leiro) and Meln are


baroque, with interesting Cistercian
churches. They are both in the area
of Ribadavia, whose fine churches
33

and eleventh century Jewish


quarter should not be missed. At
San Clodio, the hotel has recently
been refurbished.
Xunqueira de Amba is on the
Allariz turn-off (A-52 road), 28 km
from Ourense. The visitor is
pleasantly surprised by the original
features of the Romanesque
church, the splendid ashlaring on
the choir and the ogival cloister.

Baiona. Pontevedra

Oia. Just 35 km long the coast


from Vigo, this is one of the few
monasteries situated by the sea.
The church is a supreme example
of Cistercian architecture and the
facade is baroque. The choir, built
beneath a handsome ribbed vault,
is also to be admired.

PONTEVEDRA
Poio. Just 4 km from Pontevedra,
of particular note are the baroque
facade on the church, the
churrigueresque altarpiece, the
cloister with its baroque fountain
and the original staircase. A huge
hrreo stands in the kitchen
garden. There is also a hostel.

Ras Baixas
These are the southernmost of
the rias and are also the largest.
Moreover, they have the added
advantage of a mild, subMediterranean microclimate. Our
tour will keep to the coastline,
taking the C-550 down to the
border with Portugal.

Armenteira is 20 km along Va
Rpida, passing through Sameira and
Monte Castrove. In a setting of great
beauty, the monastery dates back to
the twelfth century and its structure
bears the Cistercian mark of austerity.
From the thirteenth century onwards,
features typical of peninsular
architecture were introduced, such as
the octagonal cupola over the
transept, which has a trace of the
Mudjar. The churchs trisected
facade is finished off with a fine rose
window. There is also a hostel.

From north to south, the first ria is


Noia-Muros, named after the
areas two main towns, both of
which are seafaring and mediaeval
in origin. The northern side of the
ria is more irregular, with
sheltered coves and jutting cliffs,
while the southern side is
straighter and more exposed. This
side is particularly interesting on
account of two archaeological
sites from the megalithic past, the
castro, or fortified hamlet, at
Baroa and the dolmen at Axeitos.

Aciveiro (Focarei). Situated in a


mountainous area, the
Romanesque church and baroque
facade are now being restored.
34

The Corrubedo Nature Park,


consisting of a great expanse of
sand dunes and lakelets, looks
straight out to sea.
With its leading port at Vilagarca,
Ra de Arousa is the widest of all.
It is also the birthplace of great
writers: the Valle-Incln
House/Museum is in Pobra do
Caramial and the Rosala de
Castro House/Museum is in Padrn,
along with the foundation of the
winner of the Nobel Prize for
Literature, Camilo Jos Cela. Points
of interest on the southern side
include Torres del Oeste in Catoira,
used to ward off Normans and
Arabs; the panoramic view from
Monte Lobeira (Vilagarca); the
Fefians pazo in Cambado; and the
island, A Toxa (O Grove), a spa and
luxury tourist resort.
On Ra de Pontevedra stands
Sanxenxo, a tourist resort with a
first-class beach. Moving inland, we
find the Monastery of Armenteira;
Combarro, with its curious collection
of hrreos; and the Monastery of
Poio, affording panoramic views.
The distinguishing feature of Ra
de Vigo, the deepest of the rias, is
that it opens up into the spacious

Cabo Viln lighthouse. Costa da Morte

Ra de Noia-Muros

cove of San Simn. It is crossed by


the spectacular Rande Bridge.
Passing Vigo, we drive by the
superb Amrica beach to arrive in
Baiona, a historical ensemble of
great interest to sightseers and
also a tourist resort, complete with
nautical sports centre and state
hotel. Continuing southwards, we
observe the Monastery of Oia
overlooking the sea and come to
the end of our trip at A Guarda,
on the outlet of the River Mio,
where the impressive castro,
Monte Santa Tegra, awaits us.

Costa da Morte
This is the route quoted in the
myth about the end of the world.
It is the coast of the dead and the
forests of the Celtic Druids; it is
where the sun meets its death and

is the ultimate resort of seagulls. It


is also the coast of shipwrecks, the
scourge of sailors and fishermen.
On the countless steep cliffs, the
silhouettes of lighthouses (Viln,
Tourin, Fisterra...) loom in the
mist that rises from the sea,
cladding them in ghostly beauty.
There are three rias on this part of
the coastline: Corcubin,
Camarias and Corme-Laxe. They
are all sheltered by jutting rocks,
high hills and cliffs: Cabo Fisterra
(Cape Finisterre) and Monte do
Pindo at Corcubin; Punta da Barca
and Cabo Viln at Camarias; and,
at Corme-Laxe, Cabo Insua and
Punta Roncudo, where the best
goose barnacles to be found are
beaten by the rough waves of the
sea. Delightful fishing ports, where
the bright colours of the houses
match those of the boats, seem to
stand in defiance of this dramatic
coast. Ra de Camarias is famous
for its handmade lace and the
legends surrounding the Shrine of
Virgen de la Barca, in Muxa. When
visiting Ra de Corme-Laxe, the
Dombate dolmen and the Barreiro
castro should be included on the
agenda. Off the rias, Malpica de
Bergantios is another picturesque
fishing town with higgledy-

piggledy houses looking as if they


have risen from the rocks. Opposite
lie the imposing masses of the
rocky, now uninhabited Sisargas
Islands, a refuge for birds and
fauna.

Ras Altas and


Maria Lucense
Here we have an amazing mixture
of attractions. Apart from the cities
already described (A Corua,
Betanzos and Ferrol), there are
three towns with a vast store of
monuments: Pontedeume, Viveiro
and Ribadeo, along with two other
indispensable stops: the Marin
pazo and gardens (A Corua) and
the Church of San Martio de
Mondoedo (Lugo), the original
seat of the diocese, near Foz.
Charming seafaring towns
alternate with countless, lovely
beaches, some of which have to be
seen to be believed (Mio, Cabana,
Foz, Castro, As Catedrais) and
plunging cliffs like Cabo Ortegal,
Estaca de Bares and Mirador da
Herveira in the Sierra Capelada.
These mountains, where nature is
as yet untamed, are the home of
herds of wild horses roaming free
and the location of magical San
Andrs de Teixido. Lastly, the

Redes

visitor should go to the Sargadelos


factory (Cervo, Lugo), where the
famous porcelain is made.
Setting off from A Corua, the first
rias to come into view are the ones
at Golfo Artabro (A Corua,
Betanzos, Ares and Ferrol). The
shoreline is jagged, low and rocky,
with an ever-changing landscape
which may be admired from boat,
car or train. Few are the places in
the world where one can enjoy as
delightful a train journey as the
one from Betanzos to Ferrol.
Seaside resorts are to be found at
Sada, Mio, Oleiros, Pontedeume
and Ares. Pontedeume, with its old
quarter, bridge, Church of Santiago
and the Gothic tower of the
Andrade family, is most certainly
worth a visit.

Gate of Charles V. Viveiro

Towards the north lie a number of


rias: Cedeira, Ortigueira,
Barqueiro, Viveiro, Foz and
Ribadeo. With the exception of
Ra de Foz, they are all wider, with
craggy areas, although splendid
expanses of sand open up in the
interior. In addition, there are
excellent look-out points from
which to survey the headlands
that dominate the scene.
In Maria Lucense, the towns of
Viveiro and Ribadeo show signs of
their mediaeval origins, evidenced
in the case of Viveiro by the three
gates remaining from the wall, one
of which has been declared a
national monument. In Ribadeo,
the bourgeoisie left numerous
nineteenth century buildings, such
as Casa de los Moreno and the

Sisargas Isles

palace of the Marquis of


Sargadelos, now occupied by the
local corporation.

Ribeira Sacra
Known by this name (lit.: sacred
bank) since 1127 on account of its
many retreats for coenobites,
anchorites grottoes and houses of
prayer, Ribeira Sacra spreads over 30
km into the canyon of the River Sil,
between the provinces of Lugo and
Ourense, upstream of the
confluence of the Mio and the Sil.

Castro Caldelas

the Sils canyons from the look-out


points at Vilouxe, Balcns de
Madrid and Cristosende with visits
to the unusual monasteries of
Santo Estevo and Santa Cristina
de Ribas de Sil, described
previously. In Lugo, he should visit
Sober and its Romanesque
Churches of Lobios, Pinol and
Canabal, with elaborate splayed
frontispieces and slender bell gables,
not forgetting the eighteenth
century shrine at Cadeiras. Also
overlooking the Sil is the Monastery
of San Vicente de Pombeiro
(Pantn), where the church, with its
asymmetrical facade, and the old
priory may still be admired.

The spirit of the anchorites and their


quest for solitude and seclusion has
lived on miraculously until the
present day. It can be sensed in the
Romanesque art of churches and
monasteries, whose shady interiors
create an atmosphere of the
profound and mysterious. In contrast
to this, outside, Mother Nature
dazzles us with lofty escarpments
plummeting into the green waters
of a river that winds its way round
endless meanders. Man has also
made a great contribution to the
scenery in the form of terraces for
vine-growing, quite a feat on such
steep slopes. This out-of-the-way
region has always been a haven
thanks to the wildness and
ruggedness of its terrain, which have
succeeded in keeping the hand of
modern civilisation at bay.

In a larger, concentric circle


described by the C-536 (province of
Ourense), stands the baroque
Santuario de As Ermidas, in a
deep gorge crossed by the River
Bibei, from whose depths the
sanctuarys tall towers would
appear to be struggling to rise.
At Castro Caldelas, emblazoned
houses and white, windowed
galleries cluster together round the
castle, Castillo de Lemos.
Surrounding a superb central
courtyard, the towers look across to
the lands of Monforte, beyond the

On the Ourense side of the bank,


the visitor can combine the
enjoyment of panoramic views of
38

Sil. Then come the Monastery of


Montederramo, a fine example of
Herreras work, and the Renaissance
and baroque Monastery of
Xunqueira de Espadanedo, with
a Romanesque church. And finally,
one of Galicias oldest monasteries,
the sixth century, pre-Romanesque
San Pedro de Rocas, with chapels
and tombs dug out of the rock on
the mountainside, in a stunning
setting of granite and woodland.
On the Lugo side, the N-120
completes the arc, the prominent
feature being Monforte de
Lemos, the capital town of the
powerful Condado de Lemos. Of
the thirteenth century fortress, the
keep still stands, next to the
Monastery of San Vicente del Pino,
complete with an eighteenth
century cloister. At the museum
belonging to the convent, Clarisas,
there is an exhibition of works by
Gregorio Fernndez. The main
monument is Colegio de la
Compaa, known as Galicias El
Escorial on account of its sober
Herrera style and large size. Inside
the church, crowned by a majestic
dome, the visitor might pause to
Colegio de la Compaa.
Monforte de Lemos

admire Francisco de Moures walnut


altarpiece and, in the museum,
works by El Greco, Andrea del Sarto
and Van der Goes. Pantn is
another town replete with sights to
be seen: in addition to the
previously described Monastery of
San Vicente de Pombeiro, here we
find the Cistercian Monastery of San
Salvador de Ferreira, with a church
remarkable for its decoration; the
Church of San Miguel de Eir,
unusual because of its military and
defensive functions; the Church of
San Fiz de Cangas, reflecting the
transitional Gothic style; and the
fifteenth century Castillo de Maside.
The Ribeira Sacra circle is
completed by the Belesar and
Peares Reservoirs looking onto the
Mio with superb Romanesque
monuments, such as the Monastery
of Santo Estevo de Ribas do
Mio.
The departure points for a trip
round the region are Ourense and
Monforte. Nowadays, the motorist,
apart from visiting towns,
monuments and look-outs, may
take a trip on the catamarans

which afford an indescribable view


as they sail up and down the Sil
and the Mio. The area, ideal for
backpacking and horse riding, also
has a solid network of rural
tourism hostels.
Church of San Miguel Eir. Pantn

Catamarans
June 1 to October 12
The rest of the year:
minimum 15 people
Viajes Pardo, Juan XXIII, 1
32003 Ourense
7 988 21 04 60/63
Fax: 988 21 04 63
Hemisferios Viajes Estacin
Autobuses 27002 Lugo
7 982 254 545
Fax: 982 23 13 07

Compostela; the Council of Europe


has declared it Europes First
Cultural Itinerary; and it has been
declared a world heritage site by
UNESCO.
The phenomenon consisted of the
bedazzling arrival of pilgrims
when, in the ninth century, the
tomb of the Apstol Santiago
(James the Apostle) was discovered
in Santiago. At the time, Iberia was
largely dominated by Islam, which
was then at its height and by far
superior to inchoate European
civilisation. The pilgrims came from
Bruges, Amsterdam, Gdansk,
Budapest and Zagreb. Others came
from Lisbon, from Bari in Southern
Italy and from Arhus in Denmark.
They took the new routes which
were appearing on the map of
Europe to converge in Spain,
mainly on what was known as the
French road. There were other,
minor routes, such as the
Portuguese, the Northern and the
English Roads. For the first time,
Europe was acquiring an
awareness of its own self, giving
rise to a profound religious,
cultural and economic osmosis.

The Road to
Santiago
The road is the pilgrimage of he
who wishes to walk by himself
until he finds himself.
Shirley MacLaine
Lying at the origin of civilisations
and religions, the journey is one of
the great myths of humanity. The
flight from Egypt for the Jews, the
protection of Mohammed for the
Moslems, the journey to Bethlehem
for the Christians, mark the starting
point of the cohesion of these
peoples. The Jacobean route played
the same role in the formation of
Europe. The German thinker,
Goethe, said that Europe is not
complete without a pilgrimage to

40

Luthers criticism of the pilgrimages,


the constant warfare in Europe and
eighteenth century rationalism led
to the roads decline, although the
tradition of covering it by foot was
never entirely lost. In fact, of the
three major pilgrims routes of the
Middle Ages (Rome, Jerusalem and
Santiago), only that of Santiago
survived.

inseparable from the spiritual


quest. Physical movement, spiritual
journey.
Moreover, at a time when
intellectuals are looking for the
common roots of the European
and Christian civilisations, the road
acquires its full value as a PanEuropean symbol and foundational
journey which the pilgrims enact
and experience directly. The
heritage to be found all along the
road takes us back to the world of
Cluny, of the Cistercian Order, of
the Templars and old Christianity,
while the scenery, well off the
beaten track, is just as Mother
Nature made it. Truly, travelling
the road means a return to ones
origins and this, for many,
broadens the horizons of the
present.

Nevertheless, towards the end of the


twentieth century, the age of science
and technology, an event similar to
the one witnessed in the tenth
century took place: curiously
enough, Europe took to the road
again, firstly on the occasion of St.
James Year (1993) and again in
1999, when the mysticism of the
road and of Holy Year (a privilege
granted to Santiago Cathedral by
the Pope in 1122 in the days of
Archbishop Gelmrez) came together.

The road is ecumenical. Not only is


it joined by more and more
Catholics but also by Protestants
(thus overcoming the longstanding
opposition to pilgrimages) and
members of other denominations,
along with agnostics and walkers
moved by a whole range of
reasons.

Why has there been a revival of


this old road? Because, it has been
said, Europe needs it.
Indeed, in a world submitted to
the pressure of machines and huge
cities, the road symbolises the
ascesis of travelling by foot, when
man adapts his pace to that of
nature and the cosmos, to dawn,
daytime, eventide and night.

In view of the three emerging


values which are thought to
become prevalent in the new
century individual fulfilment,
spirituality and romanticism the
future of the Road to Santiago, the
perfect setting for the expression
of these tendencies, looks bright.

For parallel to the road to be


travelled physically runs another,
interior road to be travelled
introspectively. Keeping to the
pace as one walks along is
41

Leisure and
shows
Fiestas and fairs
Galicias calendar of events
bubbles over with one fair and
romera (festival at a local shrine)
after another. The fairs cover a
wide range of items: cattle,
cheese, fowl, game, eau de vie,
honey...., with the pulpeiras
cooking octopus (pulpo) in huge
copper cauldrons. The visitor
should make sure that he takes
part in the ritual of buying his
portion and then going under
the awnings, where bread and
wine are served on long tables
lined with wooden benches.
The romeras take place at
churches, shrines and oak forests
in the 3,500 parishes on the
appropriate saints day: Mass,
followed by a procession,
rockets, lots of good food and
dancing. The most magical are
the ones held at San Andrs de

Teixido (September 8) and


Nuestra Seora da Barca, Muxa
(A Corua), on the last Saturday
in August. Here, the participants,
standing on the shoreline, put
the mysterious healing powers of
huge legendary stones to the
test. At Caneiros de Betanzos
(August 18), a compact fleet of
vessels sails upstream to the field
where the fiesta is held, while
aboard, a banquet is served to
the sound of music.
Among the fiestas evocative of the
past are the Ortigueira Celtic
Festival in July; the Vikings Landing
at Catoira (the first Sunday in
August); Festa da Historia de
Ribadavia (the last Saturday in
August); and the one
commemorating the arrival of
La Pinta at Baiona (Pontevedra)
Arribada de la Carabela La Pinta
during the first week in March.
Those interested in arts and crafts
will find sheer delight in floral
carpets on the streets of Ponteareas
at Corpus Christi. All the fishermen
together celebrate the Virgen del

Festive figures: peliqueiros

Branding wild horses

Carmen (July 16) by decorating


their boats and forming a
procession as they sail out to sea.
Religious fiestas of note, not
dedicated to patron saints, include
Easter Week at Ferrol and Viveiro.
Lastly, there are fiestas to celebrate
the solstice (bonfires all over Galicia
on the eve of St. Johns Day, June
23-24) and the harvest, from
roasted chestnuts to grape-picking.

Each region has evolved its own


costume, which is always showy,
exotic or anachronic: a mixture
of Napoleonic, Florentine, Goyastyle, Aztec and Maya uniforms.
Amid all these figures, in
Ourense, there is a magical
triangle which constitutes the
quintessence of the fiesta: Vern,
Xinzo de Limia and Laza.
The Curros de Caballos de
Salvajes or Rapa das Bestas is
also an ancestral spectacle. As far
back as 2,000 years ago, the
Greek Strabo described it as
follows: With horns and
shouting, they chase the beasts
round the mountains until they
finally round them up. Some are
slaughtered and used as food
while others are taken to be
saddled and used as warhorses.

There are, however, two


celebrations that stand out from
the rest because they are so
deep-rooted in Galician custom:
the carnivals and the branding of
wild horses.
The carnivals are Galicias most
universal fiesta, with android
figures representing deep tribal
differences. They smack of the
pagan, the ancestral and the
earthly and bear no relation to
other carnivals. They are like a
journey through magic and
colour, in which the travellers
ignore the old rites of the mask.

Every year, the liturgy of rounding


the horses up and taking them to
the curro, or corral, takes place.
Then comes the rapa das bestas, a
bustling scene in which man
43

struggles with animal and finally


brands the horses and cuts their
manes. The youngest are returned
to the mountains.
The curros are held between
May and August at 13 places in
the provinces of Pontevedra,
A Corua and Lugo. Two of
them have been declared Fiestas
of Touristic Interest: Sabucedo,
A Estrada (Pontevedra), the first
Saturday, Sunday and Monday in
July; and Candaoso, San Andrs
de Boimente, Viveiro (Lugo), the
first Sunday in July. The fiesta of
A Capelada, Cedeira (A Corua)
takes place on the last Sunday in
June, in the magical mountains
of the same name.

Seafood

game is included, a dozen-and-ahalf different vegetables, a dozen


wines, half-a-dozen eaux-de-vie
and a vast range of delectable
cheeses, fruits and desserts.
With such variety to choose from,
the traveller can order something
different at every meal and even
then, he may not have time to try
everything: hake, turbot, bass,
angler, sole, bream, cod, ray,
conger eel, gilthead, horse
mackerel, red mullet, sardines....,
along with freshwater fish like
trout, lamprey, salmon, salmon
trout, elver, eel and shad; and, an
absolute must on the best tables,
the technicolour of seafood,
which makes ones taste buds
blossom and stimulates the
mind: oysters, spider crabs, crabs,
lobster, spiny lobster, goose
barnacles, clams, shrimps... .

Galician cuisine
In Galician cuisine, the ingredient
reigns supreme and the message
is to keep it plain and simple.
It suits present-day tastes to
perfection, stressing natural and
traditional flavours. In addition, it
is varied in foodstuffs and species,
as lvaro Cunqueiro pointed out:
in the Christian cuisine of the
West, there is no larder as
complete as that of Galicia.
This is no exaggeration: there are
over 80 varieties of saltwater fish,
over half a dozen varieties of
freshwater fish, a dozen
crustaceans, almost twice as many
shellfish, 15 meats, or more if

Inland produce adds consistency


to variety: pork is the key
ingredient of a wholesome stew,

44

enriched with the flavoursome


Galician potato and bitter turnip
tops, washed down with local red
wine. Then there is the game:
partridge, woodcock, rabbit,
starling, roe deer, wild boar and
duck.

The wines are an indispensable


complement: Albario, Ribeiro,
Valdeorras Monterrei and Ribeira
Sacra figure among the best
white wines; and lastly, the eau de
vie which is made from marc and
used in the spectacular rite known
as the queimada, where the liquid
is set alight and served at the end
of any good meal.

The dishes born of this cuisine are


known for their strong
personality: octopus feira, pies,
goose barnacles, lamprey, Padrn
peppers, Villalba capon, shoulder
of pork, bouillabaisse, the San
Simn and the soft, breast-shaped
cheeses, the Santiago tart, filloas...
many of which now form part of
the menu at non-Galician
restaurants.

Handicrafts
The widespread preference for
the natural has had a lot to do
with the revival of handicrafts,
worked in stone, clay, wood,
wicker, linen and jet, not
forgetting the long-standing
tradition of gold and silverware.

One of the secrets is that these


Atlantic products are prepared in
olive oil, the mainstay of the
Mediterranean diet. Oil, paprika
and garlic are combined to make
the star sauce, which is served
both with fish and with
vegetables. Hake en ajada or a la
gallega are prime examples.

Stonemasons work with granite


at the quarries or on the spot, at
export outlets. The quality of the
clay endows ceramics with a
special value, from the cottage
industries (Buo, Niodaiguia,
Bonxe, Guindivs-Sober) to the
famous Sargadelos. Nowadays,
furniture is a major industrial

Sargadelos ceramics

45

item. Wood becomes a work of


art in the form of bagpipes and
hurdy-gurdies made by
craftsmen who are hard put to
meeting growing demand.
Wicker and straw basketry is on
sale at all the fairs and a street
full of basket-makers runs
through the old quarter in Vigo.
Linen and cotton are used to
make delicate bobbin lace in
Camarias.

Green tourism ranges from rural


accommodation at pazos and
cottages to backpacking,
horseback and cycling tours,
canoeing and rowing on rivers
and reservoirs. There is also
plenty of river fishing and
hunting, not only small game
but also deer, roe deer, fallow
deer and wild boar, under the
auspices of the game reserve,
Reserva Nacional de Ancares. As
for snow sports, Manzaneda is
the only ski resort in the northwest of the peninsula, while for
those wishing to release
adrenalin, bungee jumping,
paragliding, rafting, climbing
and abseiling are other options.

The Celtic influence lives on in


gold and silverware, both in
jewellery and in knick-knackery.
It is a particularly creative skill
and the craft of emigrants:
Galicians are legion in jewellers
guilds. Jet, the good luck charm
of pilgrims, has been associated
with Santiago since mediaeval
times.

Lastly, golf, with three 18-hole


courses: A Zapateira (A Corua),
Domaio (Moaa, Ra de Vigo)
and Mondariz (Pontevedra); and
six 9-hole courses: Aero Club
Santiago; Rois; A Toxa; Aero Club
Vigo; Montealegre Ourense and
Club de Golf Lugo.

Sports
The ras are the ideal setting for
sailing, aquatic motor sports,
fishing, water-skiing, scuba
diving and yachting. No other
coast can compete as regards
good sailing days and safety.
Surfing and windsurfing may be
practised from beaches exposed
to the open sea (Pantn,
Valdovio and San Jorge, Ferrol),
while there are 24 operative
nautical sports centres and 70
ports, mainly fishing, for
boarding, landing and mooring.

46

USEFUL INFORMATION

RAILWAYS
RENFE 7 91 328 90 20
FEVE (narrow gauge railway).
El Transcantbrico General
Rodrigo, 6. 28003 Madrid.
7 91 553 09 11 91 533 70 00.
Fax: 91 553 91 97 www.feve.es
A seven-day tourist trip from
Bilbao to Ferrol or viceversa,
sleeping on the train, daily coach
trips, meals at selected
restaurants. San Sebastin-Bilbao
and Ferrol-Santiago by coach.

Coming and going


Two expressways link up with
the central plain: the A-52
through Ourense to PontevedraVigo, and the A-6 through Lugo
to A Corua. The Ferrol-Vigo A-9
motorway runs into the Tui
expressway (A-55), to connect
with the A-3 from Oporto and
the Lisbon-Oporto A-1. Other
main access routes include the
A-70 from Asturias via Ribadeo
and the N-120 from Len via the
Sil Basin to Monforte and
Ourense.

Accommodation
and Congress Halls
Having doubled in the last 10
years, accommodation has
improved both in quality and in
quantity, as shown by the fact
that a good number of
establishments, especially the
first-class ones, have been built
only recently. At the present time,
there is accommodation for
33,306 guests at 455 hotels. There
are nine paradores, or state
hotels, headed by the standardbearer of the state network,
Hostal de dos Reis Catlicos, in
Santiago. Pousada de Portomarn,
on the Road to Santiago, is
owned by the Autonomous
Government of Galicia.

BUS STATIONS:
A Corua: Caballeros, s/n
7 981 23 90 99
Ferrol: Paseo Estacin
7 981 32 47 51
Lugo: Praza Constitucin
7 982 22 39 85
Ourense: Carretera Vigo
7 988 21 60 27
Pontevedra: Alfreces
Provisionales, s/n
7 986 85 24 08
Santiago: San Caetano, s/n
7 981 58 77 00
Vigo: Avda. Madrid s/n
7 986 37 34 11

The decade of the nineties


witnessed the promotion of rural
tourism, which is the essence of
inland tourism, with 253 superb
pazos and cottages. A total of 22

GALICIAS AIRPORTS
A Corua 7 981 18 72 00
Santiago Information
7 981 54 75 00
Vigo 7 986 26 82 00

47

spas reflects the wealth of springs


of medicinal mineral water. A Toxa
and Mondariz stand out for their
modern therapeutical and fitness
techniques, coupled with games,
and their threefold function as spa,
golf course and conference centre.

Tui (Pontevedra)
7 986 60 03 09 fax 986 60 21 63
Vilalba (Lugo)
7 982 51 00 11 fax 988 41 20 17
Verin (Ourense)
7 988 41 00 57 fax 982 51 00 90

With landscapes like the ones


found in Galicia, camping is yet
another way of enjoying
nature. There are 32,261 places
available at 107 camp sites.

TOURIST INFORMATION
International dialling
code: 34
TURESPAA 7 901 300 600
www.tourspain.es
TURGALICIA 7 981 54 25 00
www.turgalicia.es

Galicia also caters for conferences


and conventions at its modern
congress halls, situated in A
Corua, Santiago and Pontevedra,
Garca Barbn in Vigo, the pavilion
at A Toxa and other conference
facilities at modern hotels.

GALICIAN TOURIST OFFICES:


Madrid: Casado del Alisal, 8
7 91 595 42 14
A Corua: Drsena da Marina
7 981 22 18 22
Ferrol (A Corua): Plaza
Camilo Jos Cela
7 981 31 11 79
Lugo: Praza Maior, 27 (Galeras)
7 982 23 13 61
Ourense: Curros Enrquez, 1
7 988 37 20 20
Pontevedra: Xeneral Gutirrez
Mellado, 1 (Galeras)
7 986 85 08 14
Ribadeo (Lugo): Plaza de Espaa
7 982 12 86 89
Santiago (A Corua): Ra do Vilar, 43
7 981 58 40 81
Tui (Pontevedra): Ponte Tripes
7 986 60 17 89
Vigo (Pontevedra):
Cnovas del Castillo, 22
7 986 43 05 77
Vilagarca de Arousa (Pontevedra):
Juan Carlos I, 37
7 986 51 01 44

Galicia Rural Tourism Booking


Office 7 981 54 25 27
Fax: 981 54 25 09
e-mail: webrural@xunta.es
STATE HOTELS
Booking Office
Requena, 3. 28013 Madrid.
7 91 516 66 66 Fax: 91 516 66 57
www.parador.es
e-mail: info@parador.es
Baiona (Pontevedra)
7 986 35 50 00, fax 986 35 50 76
Cambados (Pontevedra)
7 986 54 22 50, fax 986 54 20 68
Ferrol (A Corua)
7 981 35 67 20 fax 981 35 67 20
Pontevedra
7 986 85 58 00 fax 986 85 21 95
Ribadeo (Lugo)
7 982 12 88 25 fax 982 12 83 46
Santiago (A Corua)
7 981 58 22 00 fax 981 58 22 00
48

TELEPHONE NUMBERS OF
INTEREST
Medical emergencies 061
National police 091
Emergencies 112
Tele-Route (state of the roads)
900 12 35 05
SPANISH TOURIST INFORMATION
OFFICES ABROAD
Canada. Toronto
Tourist Office of Spain
2 Bloor Street West Suite 3402.
Toronto, Ontario M4W 3E2
7 (1416) 961 31 31,
fax (1416) 961 19 92
www.tourspain.toronto.on.ca
e-mail: toronto@tourspain.es
Great Britain. London
Spanish Tourist Office
22-23 Manchester Square.
London W1M 5AP
7 (44207) 486 80 77,
fax (44207) 486 80 34
www.tourspain.co.uk
e-mail: londres@tourspain.es
Japan. Tokyo
Tourist Office of Spain
Daini Toranomon Denki Bldg.4F.
3-1-10 Toranomon. Minato-Ku.
TOKYO-105
7 (813) 34 32 61 41,
fax (813) 34 32 61 44
www.spaintour.com
e-mail: tokio@tourspain.es
Russia. Moscow
Spanish Tourist Office
Tverskaya 16/2 Business
Center "Galeria Aktor" 6th
floor Moscow 103009
7 (7095) 935 83 99,
fax (7095) 935 83 96
www.tourspain.ru
e-mail: moscu@tourspain.es
Singapore. Singapore
Spanish Tourist Office
541Orchard Road. Liat Tower
# 09-04. 238881 Singapore
7 (657) 37 30 08, fax (657) 37 31 73
e-mail: singapore@tourspain.es

United States of America.


Los Angeles
Tourist Office of Spain
8383 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 960.
Beverly Hills, California 90211
7 1(323) 658 71 88-658 71 92,
fax 1(323) 658 10 61
e-mail: losangeles@tourspain.es
Chicago
Tourist Office Of Spain
Water Tower Place, suite 915 East.
845, North Michigan Avenue.
Chicago, Illinois 60-611
7 1(312) 642 19 92,
fax 1(312) 642 98 17
e-mail: chicago@tourspain.es
Miami
Tourist Office of Spain
1221 Brickell Avenue. Miami,
Florida 33131
7 1(305) 358 19 92,
fax 1(305) 358 82 23
e-mail: miami@tourspain.es
New York
Tourist Office of Spain
666 Fifth Avenue 35 th floor. New
York, New York 10103
7 1(212) 265 88 22,
fax 1(212) 265 88 64
www.okspain.org
e-mail:nyork@tourspain.es
EMBASSIES IN MADRID
Canada: Nuez de Balboa, 35.
7 91 431 43 00, fax 91 431 23 67
Great Britain: Fernando
El Santo, 16.
7 91 319 02 00, fax 91 308 10 33
Japan: Serrano, 109.
7 91 590 76 00, fax 91 590 13 21
Russia: Velazquez, 155.
7 91 562 22 64, fax 91 562 97 12
United States of America:
Serrano, 75.
7 91 587 22 00, fax 91 587 23 03

Galicia

Spain
SECRETARA DE
ESTADO DE COMERCIO
Y TURISMO

MINISTERIO
DE ECONOMA

SECRETARA
GENERAL DE
TURISMO
TURESPAA

EUROPEAN COMMUNITY
European Regional
Development Fund

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