Discover Galicia: Beyond The Way Of St James

Walking along the Camino de Santiago trail in Galicia | @timcharody
Walking along the Camino de Santiago trail in Galicia | @timcharody

Discover Galicia: Beyond The Way Of St James

Top sights, activities and cuisine of Galicia

 
Pilgrims who have walked the Camino de Santiago are familiar with the last region of this journey: Galicia. In this article from the Board of Galicia, we learn about the unmissable sights, foods, and activities of Galicia that aren't necessarily limited to the Camino trail.
 

Importance of the Camino to Galicia and Europe

Since the Middle Ages, pilgrims have flocked to Galicia from throughout Europe, drawn by the challenge of reaching the end of the Way of Saint James and the end of the known world, which until the Renaissance was considered to be Finisterre, situated on the Galician coast and one of the Continent’s westernmost points. 
 
Cape Finisterre, Galicia Spain |  <i>Marissa Ward</i>
 
Even before the idea of Europe was born, the Way of Saint James was laying the foundations thanks to the exchange of knowledge and culture that flowed throughout the West and converged at Compostela, creating a cultural and social network that sowed the seeds of the sense of the European identity and awareness that exists today. 
 
The Way of Saint James still preserves a cultural and cosmopolitan splendour that has been built up over the centuries; indeed, the medieval pilgrimage route that forged the foundations of modern Europe continues to draw thousands of people each year. Modern-day pilgrims - regardless of the personal or collective reasons that have spurred them on their way from far-flung corners of the world towards the end of the trail in Santiago de Compostela - all agree that the Way is truly universal. 
 

Galicia's Geography

Galicia is mainland Spain’s most Atlantic region. Looking out onto the ocean, its more than 1,300 kilometres of coastline are dotted with over 700 beaches, many of them completely deserted. Its breathtakingly beautiful and varied coasts boast the highest cliffs in Europe, which contrast with the calm waters of its tidal estuaries, navigable 365 days a year. 
 
Pilgrims at Fisterra
 
The Galician coast is also home to the Islas Atlánticas de Galicia National Land and Sea Park. Together with the nature parks at the mouth of the River Umia and the Corrubedo Sand Dunes, this natural treasure reflects the spectacular land and seascapes that can be admired all along the coastline. 
 
Galicia is Spain’s greenest corner. Inland, more than a thousand small rivers twist and turn their way through rolling mountains and valleys that are also home to four nature parks. Exploring inland Galicia and taking advantage of the extensive network of rural tourism accommodation is still an unforgettable adventure. 
 
Pilgrims walking in green Galicia |  <i>Stephanie Dale</i>
 

Top Sights & Activities of Galicia

With a history stretching back more than 2,000 years, Galicia is featured four times on the World Heritage List: the city of Santiago de Compostela, the Way of Saint James, the Roman Walls of Lugo - the best conserved example of their kind in the world -, and the Tower of Hercules, the world's oldest working lighthouse, in the city of A Coruña. 
 
Enjoying Santiago de Compostela after completing the Camino |  <i>Sue Finn</i>
 
Galicia boasts seven cities: A Coruña, Santiago de Compostela, Ferrol, Lugo, Ourense, Pontevedra and Vigo. Each different and with a style of its own: Lugo and Ourense are Roman cities; Santiago de Compostela and Pontevedra have been built in stone; A Coruña, welcoming and luminous; Ferrol, modernist; and Vigo, a seafaring port city. 
 
More than 20 spas and over 300 springs make Galicia Spain's leading Health Tourism destination, offering more than 2,500 beds to suit all tastes and pockets. 
 

Galicia's Delicious Cuisine

Galicia is also synonymous with wine tourism and fine foods, especially the shellfish from its tidal estuaries. It also offers a vast range of meats and fish, all with certificates of authenticity. And all this accompanied by the magnificent wines from the region's five designations of origin: Rías Baixas, Ribeiro, Valdeorras, Ribeira Sacra and Monterrei.
 
Replenish on the Camino with Pulpo y cervesa |  <i>@timcharody</i>
 



 
There are many ways to explore Galicia.
 
Want more Camino information? UTracks have been helping pilgrims complete the Camino since 2006. View our comprehensive guides, videos, stories, advice, FAQ and more.
 
Have you been to Galicia? What was your experience like? Let us know in the comment section below.
 
  
Galicia, Camino de Santiago, Spain, Camino, Way of St James

Comment (0)

Your comment will be visible after the administrator's approval.







b i u quote


Save Comment
Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Youth Adventures"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Youth Adventures</div>
World Youth Adventures is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ACT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Cycle Tours"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Cycle Tours</div>
Australian Cycle Tours specialises in high quality self guided and guided cycling experiences in a selection of the most beautiful regions in Australia.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WEX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions</div>
The pioneers of original, worldwide adventure travel holidays since 1975
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TJX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Trail Journeys"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Trail Journeys</div>
Self-guided cycling experts on New Zealand's Otago Rail Trail and more
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/BMAC.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Blue Mountains Adventure Company"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Blue Mountains Adventure Company</div>
The original Blue Mountains canyoning, hiking, climbing and abseiling experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GWNZ.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Walks of New Zealand"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Walks of New Zealand</div>
Explore New Zealand's most spectacular wilderness regions with the self-guided hiking experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/NAA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="North America Active"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>North America Active</div>
USA Canada hiking & cycling tour specialists, choose from self-guided or guided trips