Vigo

Capital of the south

42°14'00"N 08°43'00"W
Maximum altitude: 690 m
Distances: 589 km to Madrid
1152 km to Barcelona
727 km to Seville
947 km to Valencia
460 km to Lisbon

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Vigo

Vigo, a maritime city full of history, is also the first city in Galicia concerning population. The olive city offers unique sites and is the origin and destination of many routes which go along the seaside or through its powerful inner structure.

To understand the essence of the city and its sea you have to cross the Puente de Rande (Rande Bridge) which more than 50,000 vehicles use daily.  Among all the viewpoints which arise to the Ría de Vigo (Estuary of Vigo), the Banco de Redondela is nowadays the most visited. Even if the access by car is complicated it offers a nice postcard of the bridge and the Cies islands, one of the greatest treasures of Vigo and all Galicia. History and legends tell us about dozens of galleons on the ground of the estuary, full of gold from the Americas. That circumstance inspires the sculpture dedicated to Jules Verne in the port of Vigo, giving thanks for the mention in Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.
 
Vigo is a city that counts on an important network of parking facilities. This allows us to get close by van to most of its many sites. It's a very dynamic city which offers us attractive itineraries in variety, like the one coming from the kilometer zero at Puerta del Sol, it allows us to move from the historic centre to the residential area on our own whim. It's precisely this imaginary line that unveils the centre of the city where we discover one of the olive symbols: the sculpture El Sireno, work of Francisco Leiro which represents the union between men and the sea. If we visit the city centre it is really recommended to go to the top of monte do Castro (Mount Castro) a solemn viewpoint which allows us to enjoy all the greatness of the estuary.

Towards the inland the Castrelo Park opens up like an authentic green lung. Walks, hiking and leisure for the whole family are its main features and its open air amphitheatre is the habitual location for great shows. The Museum Quiñones de León imbedded in the Pazo of Castrelos, presents an interesting offer of Galician art as well as dream gardens. It represents together with the Museo do Mar (Sea Museum) and the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo (MARCO; Museum of Contemporary Art) the main museum offer of the city.

In Vigo it is easy to go back in time if we walk to Plaza de la Constitución (Constitution Square) where the old town hall is or if we visit the Colegiata de Santa María (Collegiate Church of Santa Maria), the main church of the city. In its atrium a big olive tree was planted by the Templar and it gave the place its name.

Strolling through the historic centre will allow us to go from surprise to surprise on a route that takes us to the Paseo Marítimo (Seaside Promenade) to enjoy one of the most attractive pictures of the estuary. A footbridge shows us the way to the Muelle de Trasatlánticos (Transatlantic Pier) and the Estación Marítima (Maritime Station) one of the main communication hubs of the city. This splendid port facade also presents an extraordinary gastronomic offer with lively terraces. It’s also famous for the diversity of nightlife options it provides. Vigo is a city that never sleeps and the nights in its historic centre, in Churruca or Samil, are always a party.

This cosmopolitan city is also a synonym of haute cuisine thanks in great part for the respect towards tradition and its exceptional fishing port, leader in unloading of fresh fish. The fish market, famous for moving great part of the sea products consumed in Spain, became another attractive tourism site to visit every morning. The best fish in the world is auctioned there and send directly to the markets of half Europe. Even if O Berbés, where the first food market of the city was opened, is still standing out for its fish and seafood, nowadays Bouzas is the neighborhood with most seafaring flavor. Its traditional commerce, its food market and its tapas zone are other important attractions. The oysters of the estuary are so famous that they have their own street, la calle de las Ostras (the Oyster Street), in A Pedra. It’s one of the main gastronomic and tourist lures of the city. We can taste and enjoy it in many establishments scattered around a corner full of joy.
 
Heading south to go along the coast, the beaches of Vigo will soon appear, where practicing water sports is constant throughout all the year: whether it is sailing, surfing, diving, canoeing, windsurfing or sport fishing. If you want to enjoy a good dip Samil, Vao or the Cies Islands are the main attractions here.

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