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The magnificent beaches of northern Spain

[Tripper: Paola]
ITPaletta e secchielloIsole Cies

Thinking of Spanish beaches, the mind runs towards the Mediterranean coast: Costa Brava, Costa Blanca or Costa del Sol, where more or less famous places follow one another and are teeming with life and people.
Often overshadowed by so much notoriety, the beaches of northern Spain are somewhat underestimated, but believe us, having been lucky enough to visit them, we can say that they are hidden jewels offering breathtaking landscapes where nature is truly hero.

Spiaggia di Rodas nelle isole Cies

Rodas beach in the Cies Islands

Playa de Torimbia presso Llanes

Torimbia beach in Llanes


The northern coast, starting from the Cantabrian Sea, then moving towards Asturias and Galicia, offers pristine beaches that are still unexploited and therefore well preserved from mass tourism.
Authentic and with a calm atmosphere, they are ideal for those who want to escape the chaos. Coastal villages are a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture, try the delicious regional gastronomy and experience the warmth and hospitality of the locals.
You must not miss the octopus with potatoes and paprika typical of Galicia or the much sought after percebes .
Don't you know what they are?
They are molluscs that grow clinging to sheer cliffs, exposed to an ocean that can be impetuous. Collecting them is not child's play, on the contrary, it is a risky and tiring job that justifies the cost of these peculiar seafood.
Returning to the beaches, we want to punctuate your journey with points where you can let your skin taste the fresh water of the ocean and if you really don't feel like it because you love the heat, you can enjoy the sun and of the beauties of the coast.
The first beach we suggest is just beyond the town of Santander, going towards Cabo Menor.
It is the Playa de Los Molinucos, a paradise for surfers thanks to the wind which often raises beautiful waves. Its somewhat isolated position also makes it ideal for those who want to escape the hustle and bustle of the more crowded beaches. In addition to enjoying the beach, you can also explore nature all around, characterized by cliffs with panoramic paths from which you can have a privileged observation point to enjoy breathtaking nature.
Continuing west we stop in the village of San Vicente de la Barquera
From here it is easy to access Playa de Merón, famous for its golden sand and crystalline waters. The sand is very fine and silky it doesn't stick to the skin but it makes it difficult to build castles. The beach stretches for over a kilometer so you won't struggle to find your place to relax. We leave the Cantabrian Sea to enter Asturias with a real paradise lagoon. The Playa de Torimbia near the town of Llanes is shaped like a half moon.
Reaching it is not easy because it is rather hidden and being a protected natural area, there are no convenient parking lots near the beach where you can leave your car or tourist facilities.
To get there, you can park along the road or leave your car at the Torimbia car park, which is about a 10-15 minute walk from the beach.
It may seem a bit tiring to you but, if you arrive early in the morning, you will have an incomparable spectacle before your eyes. Along the path that descends towards the beach, your gaze will embrace the entire lagoon.
Playa de Torimbia is a protected beach with crystal clear waters and moderate currents making it ideal for snorkelling, swimming or even exploring the sea caves with their rich underwater ecosystem. The beach invites a truly authentic contact with nature, so much so that many visitors love to practice nudism.
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Continuing our journey of discovery of the beaches of northern Spain, we stop in the area of Ribadeo, in Galicia.
In this area there is perhaps the best known beach of the entire coast. We are talking about the Praia das Catedrais (Beach of the Cathedrals), a marvel that takes your breath away thanks to its impressive rock formations and natural arches reminiscent of Gothic cathedrals. Praia das Catedrais has been declared a natural monument and enjoys special protection aimed at preserving its beauty. This means that access to the beach is limited and controlled and requires a permit, which can be obtained online in advance at dedicated site. The rock cathedrals are visible in all their grandeur when the tide is out and you can walk safely under the arches or alongside the tallest walls. Consult the tide table before reserving your access to the beach.
Being the star of the area, expect an important influx of tourists but don't let yourself be intimidated, it is a marvel that is worth seeing.
To enjoy tranquility, still in the area, a little to the west, there is Praia dos Castros a solitary beauty not frequented by tourists, perfect for enjoying the sun and the blue with all the privacy you desire.
Let's now take a much further leap to get to where the earth ends or at least that was what the ancients believed.
We are in Finisterre, the end of the world, a place with a high symbolic value, considered mystical and magical in antiquity and, today, the final destination of many pilgrims who face the Camino de Santiago. The beach we suggest is Praia Da Langosteira in the town of Lugo. It is a beach full of shells, where you can get lost looking for your marine treasures, especially the shell of vieira, universal symbol of the Camino de Santiago. This shell has the shape of a fan with many grooves converging towards a central point. During the Middle Ages, pilgrims used to wear the shell as a sign of identification and spiritual protection and this tradition is still practiced today.
The world does not naturally end in Finisterre, as the ancients thought, and if you embark on a ship, just off the coast of Vigo, you will discover the paradise of the Cies Islands, an archipelago made up of three islands: Monteagudo, do Faro and San Martiño, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean which has the ability to enchant every visitor.
Nature is the landlady here; the wild landscape, of pine and oak woods, invites you to enter to discover its beauty, walk the paths and get to the top where you can enjoy a breathtaking view, down to the beaches, especially Rodas beach between the islands of Monteagudo and do Faro, whose golden tongue stands out against the intense blue of the sea. This beach has been defined as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world and would you like to deny yourself a dip in the waters of European Polynesia?
In order to preserve the beauty and integrity of the Cíes Islands, access is limited daily, so it is necessary to book in advance, especially during the summer season.

We are sure we have convinced you to at least consider a tour around here, it is really worth it.
Have a good trip!

Praia das Catedrais

Praia das Catedrais

Percebes sugli scogli della spiaggia delle cattedrali

Percebes on the rocks of the beach of the cathedrals


Playa de Los Molinucos vicino a Santander

Los Molinucos beach near Santander

Praia dos Castros

Praia dos Castros