The Sea Route

This maritime Route, waterway by the ria de Arousa and the Ulla´s river, commemoratse the arrival by sea in Galicia of the apostol´s corpse Santiago el Mayor, due to a consequence of his martyrdom in Jerusalem (44 AD).

21

The coasts of ria de Arousa are varied in landscape and rich in historical inheritance; on its two banks we can observe a multitude of beaches, capes, bays and harbours, where the villas, fishermen, viticultural´s village, are living in a sincere harmony with the natural environnement. The large gastronomic noriety and the sweet weather of the ria offer a really attractiveplace to visit. The North river, dominated by the sierra de Barbanza, begins to the province of A Coruña, meanwhile the meridional, flatter and with the rivers Umia and Con, proceeds to Pontevedra.

This maritime itinerary begins at the entrance of the ria de Arousa, leaving on starboard, Onza and Ons islands, in front of the ria de Pontevedra we observe the coasts of Sanxenxo: the nature of Ons island protected since it has been declared a natural area; we can access to it from Sanxenxo, area which stands out by its beauty so caracteristic of each ria´s corner, and the popular summer. Sanxenxo also get a group of historical buildings in Lanzada, formed by a necropole, a vigilence coast tower and a roman chapel called Nosa Señora da Lanzada (XIII century ). At the entrance of Arousa we can observe the coastline of Salvora island.

2

Due to a difficult navigation to access to the ria de Arousa (a lot of impassable banks), the more secure maritime road is the one which follows the “Canal Principal” between Savora island and the O Grove´s peninsula.

This canal is the reference Salvora´s lighthouse and Pombeiro island, at the extreme south east of O Grove. The canal follows this way doubling on starboard the San Vicente headland (O Grave) and accessing at the largest part of the ria, a sort of interior sea (330 km2). This meridional coastline is most jagger. The O Grove peninsula and A Toxa island form one of the most famous resorts of the ria.

4

This maritime pilgrimage merits a stop in the rich viticultural lands of Meaño and Cambados too which have many historic monuments. In Meaño for example we can see Simes church, with important romanesques rests. Nearby, the city of Cambados, formed by the historic nucleus of Cambados, Fefiñans and Santo Tomé do Mar, offers an important quantity of historic and artistic monuments (Cortegada).

12

The maritime Route continues in the North direction, passing between the rivers of A Pobra do Caramiñal and of A Illa de Arousa. This last island, standing in the middle of Arousa´s sea, is the biggest ria´s island , showing a jagged, rocky coastline with numerous beaches.

In the other river of Arousa, in Boiro and Rianxo, we also can find exceptional marks of hitoric and varied richness of this part´s ria. The Neixon´s castro, situated in Boiro near the Rianxo´s harbour, is one of the principal archeologic enclave of Arousa. Its inhabitants , must already have been used, to the roman ships maritime traffic by the middle of the first century. One of these ships could be “ A Barca de Pedra “ which transported the apostol corpse. The city of Boiro offers a lot of romanesque churchs (Cespon et Abanqueiro), interesting cruises and pazos , like Torres de Goians, Fonteneixón or Agüero´s pazo.

Leaving the rivers of Catoira and Rianxo, the itinerary takes the course of Ulla´s river, maintaining the cape in the direction of Pontecesures and the old river port of Iria Flavia in Padron. After only a few minutes of fluvial navigation, on the two river banks appear, the lands of Valga and Dodro. Valga has got an appreciable complex of romanesque churchs ( XII century), like Xanza´s church (reformated during the XVII- XVIII centuries), or Campaña and Cordeiro. Near the Os Martores´s chapel (possible popular derivation of “ martyrs “) exists a necropolis, where we suppose that the sepultures of Prisciliano and his disciples, whose corpses were transportated to the Galice since Tréveris ( Germany ), could lie.

mar_6

From Pontecesures, we must continue the pilgrimage overland till Padron, Iria Flavia, birthplace of the writer Camilo Jose Cela, Nobel Price of Literature, and head office of his fondation. Yet, the principal historic testament is the beautiful Colegiala de Iria, building during the XVII century , which conserves the gothic portal the Epiphanie´s and the Rodrigo de Luna´s sepulcre (1452-1460) in the presbytery.

After that we must take the direction of the Nosa Señora da Escravitude ´s baroque sanctuary, where we will meet a lot of Tea´s etnographic nucleus, in the middle of the woods, until the Castro Lupario, and arrive at the famous gothic crossroads of Cala (XV century ), one of the oldest of Galicia, near the Compostela´s doors, final point of all the occidental pilgrimage routes. The urban itinerary of this Route in Santiago coincides with the Portuguese Route.