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The Sacred Stones of the Costa da Morte
A two-day circuit to discover the sacred stones of the Costa da Morte: Megalithic monuments such as the Dolmen of Dombate, remains of a hill fort in Borneiro and the magical stones that today have been Christianised in the Sanctuary of A Virxe da Barca (Our Lady of the Boat) in Muxía and the Cama do Santo (Saint’s Bed) in Fisterra.
We suggest beginning this itinerary in Buño, with an interesting visit to the Ecomuseum of Muíño de Forno do Forte, where we can witness first hand how the famous pottery is crafted. If you like the pottery, in Buño there are several shops and workshops that sell a set to prepare the typical Galician punch known as queimada, as well as other unique pieces.
Next, and accompanied by an official guide, we take a 3 hour tour to discover two symbols of the ancient hill-fort and Megalithic culture in Galicia: the Castro de Borneiro, in Cabana de Bergantiños, that shows the remains of a Bronze Age settlement, and where we can also take a short trail that passes by different mills, and the Dolmen of Dombate, possibly Galicia’s most famous and best preserved burial chamber, located inside a glass and wood pavilion and with a visitor’s centre situated nearby.
In the afternoon we head to Vimianzo to visit its castle, a medieval fortress that is perfectly renovated, and where lace-makers and linen crafters participate in the Live Handcrafts Exhibit. In addition, you can see the lace from Camariñas, leather and silver as well as ceramic pieces.
We provide you with detailed instructions so that from Vimianzo you may locate some of the burial chambers (dolmens and tumuli) that can be found in the area, and that are only a few of the Megalithic monuments that are scattered throughout the Costa da Morte. The most interesting and accessible ones are the Dolmen of Pedra Cuberta, that lends its name to the hamlet where it is located, and the Dolmen of A Casota de Freáns, just a one kilometre walk from the hamlet of Berdoias. Enjoy the wild beaches and meadows that you come across during these short strolls while you search for these magical stones.
You can try to catch the last sunray that falls on Mainland Europe next to the Lighthouse of Cape Touriñán, that stands in the vicinity of either of the accommodations available for this route, in the town of Muxía: Casa Trillo or the Hotel Rural Fontequeiroso. Both hotels offer a tasty dinner that needs to be booked in advance. Accommodation.
MUXÍA – FISTERRA
After breakfast we set off towards the seafaring town of Muxía, whose name means land of monks. On the way there we find two interesting monasteries: San Martiño de Ozón, with one of Galicia’s largest stone granaries close by, where you must not forget to take the “typical Galician snapshot”, and San Xián de Moraime, 12th century work carried out by the school of Master Mateo, the famous sculptor of the Pórtico da Gloria of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.
And in Muxía, we recommend parking the car and taking a calm stroll along the seafront, the dock of Don Manolo and the square known as Praza da Constitución. Then continue along the seafront, with the estuary of Camariñas to your right, climb up to the ‘maritime’ Gothic style church of Santa María, with an unusual bell tower that stands on the rocks and is set apart from the temple. From there a trail with views of the conger eel drying facilities leads us to the Sanctuary of the Virxe da Barca (Our Lady of the Boat), that dominates the sea, where the magical Christianised rocks are located and that heighten the miraculous powers of the Virgin who appeared to the apostle Saint James. The “Pedra de Abalar” (Balancing Rock) would be the hull of the Virgin’s boat, the “Pedra dos Cadrís” (Kidney Rock) would be the sails, and the “Pedra do Temón” (Rudder Rock) would be the boat’s rudder. Here the waves of the Atlantic Ocean beat violently and invite us to disconnect from the madding crowd for a while.
It is almost lunchtime and we can return to the village along the western side of the peninsula of Muxía to the town centre, to taste a typical caldeirada de pescado (fish stew), with conger eel, pollack and ray.
In the afternoon we continue our itinerary by heading towards Fisterra, where we visit the Romanesque church of Santa María das Areas, located where the road that leads to the lighthouse of the End of the World begins. Later, continuing along the same path, we can park the car and take an easy trail (4 km) up to the chapel of Monte de San Guillerme (Saint William’s Mount), where the magical rock, the so-called Cama do Santo (Saint’s Bed) is located. It is an ancient anthropomorphic slab linked since prehistoric times to cults and fertility rites.
The icing on the cake is the Lighthouse of Fisterra, that in ancient times was believed to be the end of the known world. Witness the spectacle of the sun setting over the sea, that will lead you to wonder if this is in fact the end of the world or the beginning of heaven.
Day 3 (optional)
OPTIONAL: FISTERRA – MONTE PINDO GUIDED TRAIL
If you wish to end this route full of magical stones with a hike up the Monte Pindo, we recommend extending your stay one extra night in a country guesthouse in the area of Ézaro, and climb the mount accompanied by an official guide service to avoid getting lost or missing any of the magical legends about the rocky landscape of the Monte Pindo, that our expert guide will narrate along the way.
The chosen accommodation is the country guesthouse Casa Rural Santa Uxía, an ancient farmhouse dating from 1920 located on the banks of the Santa Uxía reservoir, in the hills of the Monte Pindo and just 5 minutes away from the beach of Ézaro, where the river Xallas spills into the sea in the form of a spectacular waterfall.
Our guided hiking trail lasts a total of 4 hours and does not require prior preparation, for we take the less steep path. Along this route we learn firsthand the meaning of this natural cathedral, considered by many the Celtic Olympus of Galicia and a place where magic exists. We follow a trail that ends at the highest point, known as A Moa located 627 metres above sea level. From here we enjoy spectacular views of the end of the world, Cape Fisterra and, weather permitting and if we have a good pair of binoculars handy, we can even catch sight of the towers of the Cathedral of Santiago.
Casa Trillo or Hotel Rural Fontequeiroso
- Low season: 59 €
- High season: 65 €
Rate per person and package in double room (min. 4 persons)
1 night B&B at Casa Trillo or at Hotel Rural Fontequeiroso (Muxía).
3-hour guided route with official guide: Castro de Borneiro and Dolmen of Dombate.