The geo-destination, O Ribeiro, contains the municipalities:  A Arnoia, Amoeiro, Avión, Beade, Beariz, Boborás, Carballeda de Avia, Castrelo de Miño, Cenlle, Cortegada, Leiro, Maside, Melón, O Carballiño, O Irixo, Piñor, Pontedeva, Punxín, Ribadavia, San Amaro and San Cristovo de Cea.

Located in the heart of the province of Ourense, O Ribeiro is a land of fertile valleys crossed by numerous rivers such as the Miño, the Arnoia or the Avia. O Ribeiro is synonymous with wine, and in the Middle Ages the monks of the Monastery of San Clodio de Leiro made sure it reached the stately tables of Spain and Portugal. In fact, the D.O. Ribeiro is the oldest in Galicia and one of the first recognised in Spain.

And for lovers of art, a whole world to discover. Such as the Romanesque Route, the Parque Arqueolóxico de San Cibrao Las, one of the largest and most spectacular fortified pre-Roman Iron Age villages in Galicia, or the Cistercian monastery of Oseira of Oseira, considered "the Galician Escorial" because of its magnificence.

n addition, O Ribeiro is a land of spas and hot springs. Arnoia, Laias, Cortegada, Berán and Prexigueiro are perfect for a relaxing getaway. And do not miss Ribadavia, famous for its Jewish quarter – one of the most important in Spain – and its big festivals. In neighbouring O Carballiño, they also celebrate the 'Festa do Polbo' in which one of the delicacies of Galicia, the octopus, is honoured.

Heritage

When taking a look at the works left by our ancestors, no doubt Ribadavia's historic centre stands out, especially because of its Jewish quarter, with the addition benefit that but a short distance away stands a small Visigothic church, one of the few surviving of pre-Romanesque style, San Xes de Francelos. All of this, nevertheless, enjoys healthy competition from a building that is isolated as few are, and so well rehabilitated that at one time it received the Europa Nostra award: The Convent of Oseira in the municipality of Cea.

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The Church of the Vera Cruz was built in the village of O Carballiño – known for its mineral waters that spring forth along the shores of the River Arenteiro – in the middle of last century by architect Antonio Palacios. Featuring an eclectic style, it is one of his great religious works and the one with which the town is most identified.

Natural reserves

With regard to natural treasures, one that is well worth mentioning is Pena Veidosa a rugged area northeast of the Monastery of Oseira with more than two thousand hectares declared to be a Site of Community Importance. The Pena Corneira natural monument – located between the municipalities of Carballeda de Avia, Leiro and Avión – is a large stone "horn" 10 metres high and surrounded by a rock-filled landscape.

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Festivals and gastronomy

This geodestination is chock-full of festivities. Just like all of Galicia, it goes without saying, but here there are several heavy weights. Thus, Ribadavia features the Exposición e Exaltación do Viño do Ribeiro, O Carballiño hosts the highly popular Festa do Polbo, A Arnoia draws people like a magnet to its Festa do Pemento and in San Cristovo de Cea there is no room to take a step during the Festa de Exaltación do Pan de Cea (indeed, all the ovens have permanent signs). The Festa da Istoria – also in Ribadavia and declared a National Tourism Event – revives the Jewish world, with bands, a parade, human chess and wedding included. And with regard to the world of culture, we must return to Ribadavia, where the Mostra Internacional de Teatro is held every year.

It is not easy to find someone unfamiliar with the place name that identifies this geodestination, which is undoubtedly due to its Ribeiro wine and Designation of Origin, which has enjoyed an excellent reputation for over four centuries. Here, it is the River Avia around which part of the territory is organised, surrounded by rugged mountains. Adjacent to Avia and in the foothills of the mountains that define it are where most of the vineyards are.

HIGHLIGHT: Pazos de Arenteiro and Festa do Polbo

The picturesque village of Pazos de Arenteiro in the heart of O Ribeiro is a magnificent example of popular and palace architecture of this part of Galicia. An attractive route runs through the town starting from the vicinity of the Church of San Salvador via a marked trail that crosses the romantic medieval bridge that crosses over the River Arenteiro and ends in a waterfall in the Pozo dos Fumes. Native river vegetation and vines intermingle in the landscape of this attractive stone landscape.

Special mention in this geodestination goes to the octopus of O Carballiño, which gave rise to the celebration of one of the most massive and characteristic culinary festival of Galicia: the Festa do Polbo. Held every second Sunday of August at the municipal park in the village, since 1969 is has enjoyed the privilege of being considered an official Galician Tourist Event..

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