Galicia Travel Guide

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daybreak in the estuary

daybreak in the estuary

Galicia looks out over the Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Biscay with over two thousand years of history behind it. Largely undiscovered by foreigners, it is very picturesque and mostly unspoilt. It also offers some of the prettiest Spanish landscapes.

To explore these lands in the north-west of Spain means a chance to live the adventure of a lifetime, full of tradition, lush landscapes and unique cities. In Galicia, the frontiers between sea and land cancel each other out. Both blend together along the 1,300 kilometres of coastline, 772 beaches, and five large rias (long sea lakes that stretch inland) where, tradition has it, the right hand of the Creator shaped the dramatic coastline that now defines part of this land.

A traveller coming to Galicia soon discovers that, in this territory situated in the north-west of the Iberian Peninsula, over two thousand years of history have endured. Local history offers every visitor its enigmatic castros (Celtic dwellings) with their peculiar citadels; and in them, perhaps, discover the Celts, ancient occupants of an evocative granite world (the castros at Baroña -Porto do Son-, Viladonga -Castro do Rei- or Santa Tegra -A Guarda- are the best-preserved).

The traveller can also see Gallaecia, the Roman Galicia. The great Roman Wall in Lugo is still standing, a unique fortified enclosure with a circular structure and a perimeter of 2,200 metres lasting since the 3rd century. Something different is immediately noticeable here. Clear connections with the Celtic peoples are to be seen in this fertile land. Galicia is also the land of a thousand rivers. Water runs into many of them off the mountains of Os Ancares, O Courel or Peña Trevinca (with altitudes over 1,800 metres). The father Miño crosses Galicia from north-east to south-west, to flow placidly out to sea at the Portuguese frontier. The river channels are as varied as the landscape: from the remarkable Sil Canyons (whose river is the Miño's main tributary, and which can be comfortably travelled by catamaran) and the Ribeira Sacra, an area of uneven contours, ideal for vine growing. The way out of Galicia by sea is through its rias. Altas (high) or Baixas (low) which nestle into the landscape making an incomparable backdrop for water tourism, with five blue flag ports in 1997 (A Coruña, Porto do Son, Ribadeo, Baiona and Vilagarcía de Arousa).

Mountains, lush valleys and the most dramatic piece of coastline you are likely to find in Spain can be found in the four districts which make up the region. The district of Orense is by far the most mountainous with peaks reaching up to 1800m.


March 04, 2005 new by euroadventures (1 point)

June 08, 2005 new by hoteleshusagalicia (1 point)

June 09, 2005 change by giorgio

October 10, 2004 change by davidx

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