Looking for getaway ideas? And if we go to the province of Lugo? How about A Mariña Occidental? Or the Central? And why not the Oriental? Decided: the best is the complete pack: we are going to delve into A Mariña Lucense, its beaches, mountains, history, gastronomy… Here are some suggestions for the weekend:
Beaches and natural sites
The coast of A Mariña Lucense goes from O Vicedo, where O Fuciño do Porco, to the Ribadeo estuary, which is more than 100 km. Facing the Bay of Biscay, there are sandbanks, some in the rough open sea and others more secluded.
One of the most admired beaches is As Catedrais, in Ribadeo, which is not only a beach, but a natural monument, with a rich biodiversity that must be preserved. The caves, tunnels and arches, up to 30 m high, form these marine cathedrals. The singularity of this landscape attracts more and more visitors, so if we want to go during Easter, July, August or September, it’s time to book.
If we are not for crowds, it is better to go to other quieter beaches, such as Arealonga, in the municipality of Foz, and in passing we visit the nearby castro de Fazouro, or Esteiro beach, in Xove, a surfer’s paradise. Or that of Muiñelo, Tupide, Llas, Covas, Areoura, Sarrido, A Rapadoira, A Marosa… for beaches other than… There are up to 70!
On the coast we can also contemplate the ocean from a lighthouse such as the one at A Punta Roncadoira, in Xove, where the strong and hoarse sea beats, or the one at Illa da Pancha, in Ribadeo, which you have to access by crossing a bridge.
In addition to beaches, A Mariña Lucense has places that take us back to an ancient world, ignoring the mills, of course, which must be known, like the one we find in A Serra do Xistral. These mountains separate the Cantabrian Sea from the interior of A Terra Chá. The highest point is in O Cadramón, where it is better to wear something warm, because here the wind blows very strongly. Surely we will find a wild horse or a loose cow, some remains of a dolmen… in a landscape of bolouros (large granite stones), peat bogs, humid moors… Places that inspire. And where there is a mountain, there is a valley, like O Valadouro (means the valley of gold), for example, with many fairytale corners to discover.
History and culture
Both inland and on the coast, A Mariña Lucense has cities with a big historical past. The most important are Mondoñedo, Ribadeo and Viveiro.
Mondoñedo. Now it is the capital of the region, but let us remember that it was the capital of the province of Mondoñedo in the Old Kingdom of Galicia, and it has also been episcopal since the twelfth century. In the historical center stands the Cathedral of the Assumption, the protagonist of the square, or the Real Santuario dos Remedios, the church of Santiago, or the Seminary… Between history and legend we walked by the Ponte do Pasatempo, where Isabel de Castro was withdrawn with pardon from the birth of Cela. A very picturesque area of the city is the Barrio dos Muíños, with artisan workshops near the river.
Ribadeo. It is in the extreme northwest of the province, separated from Asturias by the estuary. It is a very tourist town, with a great wealth of heritage, in which popular houses are combined with large Indian buildings (Torre dos Moreno, Castelo de San Damián…).
Viveiro is a seafaring city in the Landro river valley, where the “catro mariñeiros metidos nun bote” come (“four sailors in a boat” of the popular song). They have an important port in Celeiro, famous for hake, and a great natural and historical-cultural heritage (Puerta de Carlos V, Monasteiro de Valdeflores, Santa María do Campo square…).
Along with that of Ferrol, the Holy Week in Viveiro has been declared a festival of international interest. The most notable is the procession of the Last Supper, on Maundy Thursday and that of the Arrest and the Holy Burial on Good Friday.
Regarding the history and culture of A Mariña Lucense, we also have to talk about archaeological sites such as Castro de Fazouro, the lithic circle of A Roda or the dolmen of San Tomé, castles such as Castrodouro, or the remains of the fortress of A Frouseira…
Are there museums in A Mariña Lucense? Well of course! Here we have a few:
Álvaro Cunqueiro House Museum (Mondoñedo). It is the house in which the writer lived between 1949 and 1962. On the ground floor there is a tourist information point and a catering establishment; the first one is dedicated to Merlin and company and the rest of the building to the life and work of the author, as well as having a dining room that overlooks the orchard.
Sargadelos Museum (Cervo). There are two museums here: one the historical one, in the old Administration House of the industrial complex, with ceramic pieces and objects from the foundry and temporary exhibitions; the other museum is in the modern building, and in it we see the evolution of the factory with the arrival of Luís Seoane and Isaac Díaz Pardo.
Tuna Vessel Museum “Reina del Carmen” (Burela). It is an old ship converted into an ethnographic museum of marine culture, where you can discover life on board a fishing boat and traditional fishing methods.
The weekend that we reserve for A Mariña Lucense we’ll eat very well, because here the gastronomy is as rich and varied as the landscape: good calves and pigs in the interior, trout, Celeiro hake, Burela tuna, barnacles from Rinlo, artisan honeys from mountains and valleys, Lourenzá broad beans, Guitiriz corn cake, Mondoñedo cake…