Nobody knows a place better than the people born and bred right there. That’s why we have asked some of the top Galician travel bloggers about the best spots and things to see in Galicia you should not miss in your next visit.
Putting this list together and narrowing the choices was not an easy task.
The Most Stunning Spots In Galicia
1. Cathedral’s Beach
It only makes sense to have this well-known spot right at the beginning. Cathedral’s beach (Playa de las Catedrales) is barely 10km away from Ribadeo, my hometown. But it is not topping this list for that reason. In fact, it is not just us the ones talking about how magical this beach is.
Lately experiencing a tourism boom that made the authorities limit its visitors to less than five thousand a day, I would recommend you enjoy it in Winter, when if the day is not the greatest – what indeed will get you some beautiful shots if you are into photography as much as I am – you could pretty much have it all for yourself.
Just make sure to schedule your visit when the tide is low and you are good to go!
2. Arousa Bay
by Sita & Nena
3. Cape Finisterre
My favorite place in Galicia is undoubtedly Cape Finisterre, the “End of the Earth” (Finis Terrae) of the Romans. That corner is a rather magical one, so much that now many pilgrims choose not to end the Way in Santiago de Compostela, but in Finisterre.
Being able to enjoy the sunset there is just a treat. Not surprisingly, the sunset at this cape is considered by many as one of the best in the world, both for its beauty and for being so legendary.
There one can imagine what it would feel Decimus Junius Brutus when he came here. After defeating and conquering Gallaecia, he did not hesitate to come to this corner of Galicia to wonder how the sun was swallowed by the sea.
4. Siradella’s Hill Lookout
by Random Trip
I’m a huge fan of both the sea and breathtaking views, so this is one of my favourite spots in the Rías Baixas. You park your car and start walking up to the top (only takes you ten minutes), and this natural beauty overwhelms you. You’re even luckier if the sky is clear since you will have amazing views of the “A Lanzada” beach, the “Ensenada do Vao”, the “Illa de Ons” (Ons island) and “Illas Cíes” (Cíes islands).
Carry some Estrella Galicia beers with you and the experience will be even better!
5. Ribeira Sacra & Sil Canyons
I love Galicia and I have a lot of favourite places here, today I am going to talk about one of the great treasures hidden inside Galicia.
Welcome to the Ribeira Sacra, an area in inland Galicia which is home to spectacular natural features such as the canyon of the Sil river and a valuable artistic heritage. We can find here an interesting group of medieval monasteries, mostly in the Romanesque style, to remind us the importance of this region in the Middle Ages. San Esteban de Ribas de Sil and the monastery of Santa Cristina, stand out for their beauty. A real journey back through history. This peace and harmony lives on to this day in the region’s villages and medieval monasteries. Some are now abandoned, but are well worth visiting as their walls have been witnesses to the passing of time. The damp, moss and vegetation impart an air of mystery.
The Sil River forms a natural boundary between Ourense and Lugo. You will marvel at its rugged landscapes, vineyards, mountains and one the most famous viewing points: Los Balcones de Madrid .
Don’t forget to sail on “The Catamaráns” to appreciate the unique vistas of the canyons!
6. Viewpoint at Redondela
Do you know the Rias Baixas? Why don’t you come here and enjoy this beautiful landscapes and all the gastronomical offer?
Possibly, one of the most interesting places of all this zone is the Ria de Vigo. An estuary with the strong presence of the Cies islands. Two paradises facing each other. And if you would like to see all of this with the right perspective, the best place to do it is the Redondela lookout.
After some attempts searching a good one for all the area, I’m pretty sure this is the best place to get the best out of it. In this point, you can appreciate how many treasures are there in just one shot.
What do you think? Did I get your attention?
7. Fragas do Eume
For many years this spot was one of the best kept secrets of the Galician geography, only known by the residents of the area or the province. They would walk through the woods, to see its ancient monastery on the slopes of Eume canyon or celebrate a sort of traditional yearly pilgrimage, a romeria. A great place to explore all year long, today it receives thousands of visitors during the Summer months.
His most popular Caaveiro access is well signposted from Pontedeume. But this Atlantic forest of great value for its flora and fauna can also be visited from As Pontes de Garcia Rodriguez or Monfero. There one can enjoy the lush nature, its beautiful river, the remains of an industrial building in the old center of A Ventureira and the art and history of its ancient inhabitants: the religious hermits who first settled in this land.
Do not leave without embracing the loneliness and some outstanding hiking, dropping by the visitor center and having a drink in the canteen of the former monastery of Caaveiro.
8. San Simon Island
My favorite places in Galicia lie by Rias Baixas and they are the islands of St. Simon and St. Anton, a small archipelago full of history that usually lacks recognition due to its proximity with the touristy Cies islands (pictured below these lines).
This is a perfect place to spend a relaxing day and learn Galicia’s history. Templar monks were the first to inhabit these islands and last century San Simon was used as a prison island during the Franco regime.
There is a permanent exhibition of photography and the views of the Vigo estuary are beautiful. Plus, if the tide is low we will see a tribute to Jules Verne: two divers looking for the treasure of Rande!
9. Patos Beach
Sunny in the summer, perfect for a walk during winter and ready for surf year-long, Patos beach is one of the my favorite places in the Rias Baixas. Its relaxed atmosphere welcomes both surfers and sunbathers who come here to enjoy its clear waters and the white sand.
Best? Its location just across Cíes Islands is perfect if you are looking for a stunning sunset picture. And it’s only a few kilometers away from popular Panxon fishing village and Praia America beach.
Bonus: It’s also one of the locations of the novel “Death on a Galician Shore” (A Praia dos Afogados) from Domingo Villar.
by Trucos Viajeros
Most travelers overlook Ourense on their trip to Galicia and I believe it’s a big mistake. This small city, just one hour away from the Atlantic coast, offers something for everyone and makes a perfect one day or weekend trip.
If you are looking for relax, you can enjoy the natural hot springs by the river Minho or the 60º hot fountains at As Burgas which date back to the Romans. Or you can also go “os viños”: walking around the old town and sampling the traditional Galician food at the many and more bars that offer free tapas when you order a glass of wine.