A Glimpse of Galicia

Our recent trip took us first to Galicia for three nights.  Our journey was a long one and took about 12 hours of driving, but with plenty of stops for refreshments and a little sightseeing along the way.

Because we live in the province of Malaga in southern Spain, we went west and then up through Portugal.  We made a sightseeing stop in Porto to stretch our legs and to see the Dom Luis I iron bridge which was designed by a partner of the famous Eiffel.

I loved this shot of the bridge (below), although it´s not the best in the world, as you can see boats under it, cars on it, people walking across, the metro rail above it and a helicopter flying over it.

Our hotel  near Portonovo was called Hotel Peregrina.  This is a word used for a female pilgrim, but also for scallops, which are the symbol of the Camino de Santiago, the famous pilgrims walk which has many footpaths and trails across Spain and from beyond.  On our travels we saw plenty of scallops.

The first day we went to visit an Island called La Toja which juts out into one of the Rias Baixas.

It has a chapel covered with scallop shells.

And of course, the boat trips to see where their famous shellfish is grown.  We saw mussels, and ate plenty too.

Naturally, they were proud of their scallops.

Later we headed off to a nearby city, Pontevedra, the capital of the province.  The city built up over time from the middle ages as a trading port.

The next day we drove northwards to Santiago de Compostela to see the beautiful cathedral, reputedly the burial place of St James (Sant Iago) and built between 1075 and 1122 – no mean feat when you see it!

It´s famous for it´s “Botafumeiro” (do look it up if you´re interested) which is swung via a pulley and is filled with incense.  One tradition says that it was used to mask the stench of the many unwashed pilgrims – which did make me giggle.  Sorry about the photo quality.

It´s a pretty city too, there´s plenty more to see apart from the cathedral.

We travelled back from Santiago on our last afternoon in Galicia on a quiet coastal road and stopped off in a beautiful fishing village called Carril, when the sun finally came out for us. I briefly felt like Angela Lansbury in Murder She Wrote here as it had a “Cabot Cove” feel to it!

It´s famous for its clams, and we peeked into the storage area to see the boxes and boxes of clams waiting to be sent off to restaurants, shops and all over Spain.

A final stop in “our” town of Portonovo, and the sun was still shining, so we took a walk along the beautiful sandy beach front.  People was still bathing and enjoying the sunny evening, but accustomed as we are to the heat of Andalucía, we didn´t brave the water.

And then it was our last night in Galicia.  We ate a superb dinner of rice and lobster, and it was time the next morning to start the next part of trip to Asturias.  But more of that another time. Do hope you enjoyed sharing our journey with us!

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