COSTA ÁRTABRA

Natural spaces
1169
On the Way of St. James

Location

A Coruña

Cariño | Cedeira | Ferrol | Narón | Ortigueira | Valdoviño

Coordinates:
43º 40' 56.7" N - 8º 04' 20.6" W

Description

Path of the Seven Lighthouses
The "Magnus Portus Artabrorum" is the name given by the Romans to a place on the north west angle of the coast of Galicia, between the Ares and the Ortigueira estuaries, whose exact location is unknown to us. A hundred kilometres of coastline with the most spectacular landscape combinations of land and sea of the Atlantic arch: three estuaries, sands with dunes and breaking waves, coastal lagoons and the highest cliffs in Europe. This area has been declared a place of great geological interest and its international fame could be justified solely on the variety of rocks making up these true mountain ranges, such as A Capelada, rising up over the ocean. Located on its slope we find one of the most ancient pilgrimage places, Santo André de Teixido, where the popular saying has it that those "vai de morto quen non foi de vivo" (who did not go there when living will go when dead). This is really one of the meccas of magical Galicia with its votive offerings of bread dough and its chapel where offerings are received.
There are numerous modest beacons on this stretch. The dirt roads that lead to them infect us with the scenic emotion of coming face to face with immensity. On the Ría de Ferrol, Cabo Prioriño and, a little more to the north, its brother Cabo Prior are two of those small solitary beacons. Located between them can see the Doniños beach with the first of the characteristic coastal lagoons of this region. It is deeper than those found on the other sands of San Xurxo and Pantín, and also has fresh water lagoons. Nevertheless, the largest is the lagoon of A Frouxeira, the only one with brackish water, located on the beach of Valdoviño. This is a protected humid area and an important bird sanctuary.

Access

The lagoons of Doniños and Valdoviño are close to Ferrol. Local roads from Cedeira and Cariño go to the A Capelada mountain range. Cabo Ortegal can be reached from Cariño.

The Ways of St. James

The English Camino

Situation

The northern coast of A Coruña. Municipalities of Cariño, Ortigueira, Cedeira, Valdoviño, Narón, Ferrol, Mugardos and Ares.

Area

7,658.53 hectares, of which 548 hectares are sea water

Services

Accommodation: Yes.
Food: Yes.

Without missing

From Cedeira, there are several access possibilities to the most spectacular stretches of this coast. There are some short roads, such as that which goes to the beacon on the Candieira point, with its sharp bends on the final stretch that might frighten anyone prone to vertigo. A slightly more intense road which goes to Santo André de Teixido is the local road that climbs up to the cross of Chan dos Cadrís with its spectacular lookout point, before beginning the descent to the picturesque place of pilgrimage.
Between the shrine of Santo André de Teixido and Cariño, one of the most adventurous roads in Galicia crosses the mountain range of A Capelada. Proceeding with a certain amount of caution the visitor will encounter horses and cows which graze here freely, between wind turbines located between 500 and 600 metres above sea level. The cliffs of A Vixía de Herbeira (613 m) hold the record for being the highest in Europe.
However, the visit would be incomplete if it did not end at the lighthouse on Cabo Ortegal, accessible from Cariño, contemplating Os Aguillóns, sharp rocks emerging from a constantly furious sea.

Further features

Special Protection Area

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