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Home Culture With the ‘jersey’ and table set, in the estuary that connects Galicia with Asturias | Paradores Territory

With the ‘jersey’ and table set, in the estuary that connects Galicia with Asturias | Paradores Territory

by News Room
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The piece of turbot is large (it’s wild), it weighs three kilos, and on the table at the Ribadeo parador (Lugo) it arrives, already converted into white fish, a 220-gram grilled loin, accompanied by some undercooked vegetables, al dente the Italians say. The meat of this flat fish without scales is compact and juicy, the fat urges you to extract the next fillet with the shovel. It is known to live in the Northwest Atlantic, although it is also fished in the Cantabrian Sea. It makes port in O Celeiro (Lugo), a market from which the parador’s restaurant is supplied, where a gallery made up of windows makes the Ribadeo estuary – or Eo, as they call it on the Asturian shore – very close, as This estuary separates the two regions. Miguel Pérez, a guide who takes visitors through caves and talks to them about winds and tides, and the position of the sun, and about a galleon from 1597 that lies in the bottom, and it tires them (physically) so that the turbot, but also the hake and the Burela bonito, taste what a fish in Galicia, and on vacation, should taste like.

Inside the hostel

A Galician mansion

The Ribadeo parador, in the extreme east of Galicia, was inaugurated in 1958. It has 47 rooms and is open all year round. Antonio Graña, its director, summarizes what clients are looking for: “Gastronomy, the landscape, the coast, the Cathedrals beach, nature…”. Oviedo airport is one hour away and A Coruña airport is one hour and a half away.

Fish and everything else

A gallery runs along the entire east façade of the hotel, where the restaurant and cafeteria are located. The Ribadeo estuary – or Eo, as it is called in Asturias – dominates the views while Galician seafood, empanada and octopus or cebreiro cheese ice cream, a dessert recommended by all the workers at the parador, are served.

An extension of the town

The terrace acts as a promenade parallel to the inlet of sea water that stands between Galicia and Asturias. These regions are so close together that Castropol, on the Asturian side, is clearly visible. Both hosted and non-hosted clients can use the common spaces. It is easy to find inhabitants of Ribadeo.

Abandon the car

The hotel is equipped for cycle tourism. A garage in this old roadside hostel has been converted into a bike garage and workshop, as it has tools to repair any breakdown. A route along the coast suitable for mountain bikers and strollers begins at the parador.

Prepared for rain and sun

The rooms, which have an interior and an exterior terrace, face the estuary. National tourism reaches 80% of occupancy in the summer months. Foreigners prefer to stay in May and June or in September and October. Some Norwegian workers at the Figueras shipyard (Asturias) are regular customers.



Antonio Graña, the director of the Ribeiro parador, speaks in front of a monkfish stuffed with vegetables. He says that many clients visit the A Mariña region of Lugo, which covers the municipality from Ribadeo and 15 more, for the gastronomy: “It is the barnyard area and there are many grocery stores. “Everything that is sea.” And he does not forget the blonde Galician calf, which looks pink in the butcher shop when the animal is young. He also mentions the garden, but more for the summer. “We play all the things,” he summarizes on one of the sofas in the cafeteria, which is attended by customers from the United Kingdom who visit other inns, such as Fuente Dé or Cangas de Onís. Binging – because in Galicia what is delicious has to be abundant – is mixed with practicing sports. It is true that it rains, but when it is cloudy it is a very good bike ride. And when the sun rises – and it does – you have to jump into the water.

Pérez, an Asturian in Galicia, founded the outdoor activities company Ciento Volando 22 years ago. He keeps the bicycles and canoes in a shed next to the port of Ribadeo, from where the aquatic activity begins. “The sea surrounds you, it relaxes you. “It’s what makes time pass and you don’t realize it,” says this qualified mountain guide, going on to explain that if a wave comes you have to face it with your bow to avoid hitting the rocks.

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On this maritime route there is no danger – the boats are large and have an air chamber, it is very difficult for them to capsize – but he likes to mention it for safety and so that clients release adrenaline. It is a canoe ride, calm and easy to execute, but there is also fun. The sea is the sea and it is changing. You reach coves that can only be accessed by these boats and dock at Arnao beach, where whoever wants to swim, and return to the pier, with the north wind already redoubling the effort of your arms and shoulders. The outing lasts between two and four hours, the necessary time to finish before eating. Two clients of the parador have ordered rice with lobster, the live crustacean taken from an aquarium located at the doors of the dining room, which announces what is going to arrive at the table.

Two clients leave in a double canoe from one of the caves accessed in the Asturian part of the estuary.
Two clients leave in a double canoe from one of the caves accessed in the Asturian part of the estuary.OSCAR CORRAL

In Rinlo, a fishing village 7 kilometers (or 22 minutes by bicycle) from Ribadeo, this soupy rice is also served with lubricating, What the lobster is called in Galicia. buggy, They call it in Asturias. Through Rinlo, through this old whaling port that maintains its old fishermen’s houses – it is beautiful because it has not suffered intervention and because it has not come out of any story, the harshness is not idealized –, you pass on the coastal route that Pérez already traces which is joined by Graña, the director of the inn, who takes his bike out of a garage that this old roadside hostel has set up for cycle tourism. 27 hotels of the 98 that make up the Paradores network are equipped to move around by bicycle.

—I was cut off and it wasn’t easy to reach you.

A phone call caused Pérez, the guide, to lose the platoon. The journey, 30 kilometers round trip from the parador to the Cathedrals beach, can be a relaxed walk – the sea is barely out of sight – or it can become a cycling stage. The path alternates stretches of dirt with others of asphalt, slopes and stops, as many as you want, to take a photo of the Rinlo cetaceans, three natural saltwater pools in which shellfish were grown “so that they would increase their size and sold at Christmas, when the most was paid for it. The previous months, fishing was prohibited,” explains Graña. The activity of fattening crustaceans ended in the nineties, today it is the children who use these eyes (eyes) on the stone for recreation.

Guide Miguel Pérez cycles a section of the route parallel to the sea from the Isla Pancha lighthouse to Las Catedrales beach.
Guide Miguel Pérez cycles a section of the route parallel to the sea from the Isla Pancha lighthouse to Las Catedrales beach.OSCAR CORRAL

Pérez, already on the wheel, supplies water to the rest, he is the leader and the gregarious. He rents the bikes, has a support van for clients who only want to make the outward journey by bike and explains that the iron from the A Pontenova mines arrived at the Ribadeo ore loading dock ready to be shipped on ships flying the German flag. English during the first half of the 20th century. “There is no need to overwhelm with information either,” says Pérez, who still does not shy away from any questions, who organizes hiking routes in the mountains of Oscos (opposite, in Asturias), who knows where to find gold (no one is going to get rich). and chiastolites (a stone valued in jewelry), which is immersed in the water with the most daring visitors, in what he calls wading along the coast – where the waves beat, bream and seabream are caught with a harpoon and without an oxygen bottle.

It’s about being supported by a local professional while your heart rate goes up on the bike and your tension goes down later in the hotel room because you’re close to the sea. “You sit on the gallery in your room to read and the afternoon goes by and you don’t even notice,” says Graña. “The parador has always been a meeting place for the townspeople. From the urban area it is difficult to see the sea. We have the best views,” she boasts, because he is the director and because he is right.

Salvador, Mariluz and Enrique recommend

From the parador there is a two-kilometer path along the coast that takes you to the Aceñas cove (some hydraulic mills). You can also go from the water by canoe to this wooded area where herons, ducks and other birds shelter.

Salvador Díaz-Echevarría

Head of reception 38 years in Paradores

From the Santa Cruz mountain, where you climb in a pilgrimage on the first Sunday in August, you can see the entire estuary. Upstairs there is a chapel, a picnic area, a bar that is open all year round and a monument to the Galician bagpiper. It is three kilometers from the parador.

Mariluz Moirón

governess 33 years in Paradores

When there is a storm, the waves beat and fall on the houses of the fishing village of Rinlo, which is located on a route that goes from the Isla Pancha lighthouse to the Cathedrals beach. This old whaling port is located in the Areosa inlet.

Enrique Rocha

Waiter 21 years in Paradores

Once back from the Cathedrals beach – those who want can also go by bus from Ribadeo for one and a half euros, including the pass necessary to access this natural monument restricted during Easter and summer – you can see the Torre de los Morenos , a modernist house from 1918 that rises above the rest of the buildings, from when the Indians returned from America, who displayed their fortune in the form of cars, gold watches and luxury homes. They were benefactors (they financed the construction of the cemetery or the lighting) and ostentatious, says Begoña García, the person in charge of the Ribadeo tourist office.

150 years earlier there were also rich people in Ribadeo, a commercial port of great importance in the Cantabrian Sea during the Enlightenment. The houses of the sailor businessmen had a glass viewing point on the roof called gurugu, García details on a walk through the old Plaza do Campo: “It served to warn of the arrival of ships loaded with goods, their own and those of the competition,” he says. The ships left with wine and oil and returned with hemp and flax from the Baltic countries. With port activity declining, today the hustle and bustle is carried out by visitors who arrive by car and by plane. Attracted by the mild temperatures all year round, points out the director, and by the wild turbot and shellfish that the ships unload in the ports of the Mariña of Lugo.

The Isla Pancha lighthouse is located in the westernmost part of the estuary.
The Isla Pancha lighthouse is located in the westernmost part of the estuary.OSCAR CORRAL

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