Random thoughts, rants, raves and photo opportunities

2016 - Castro de Baroña, Galicia, Spain

On our way south through the Galician region of Spain towards Portugal, we stopped for a visit at Castro de Baroña. Originally occupied from the 1st century BC to the first century AD, this fortress was by far the oldest historical site we've experienced during our Spanish tour.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Cabo Finisterre, Galicia, Spain

Following our visit to the Cathedral at Santiago de Compostela, there is no more of an appropriate destination than Cabo Finisterre. Known in the Roman times as the End of the World, this is the final destination following the visit to the cathedral for many pilgrims on the Way of St. James. The views here on the rocky peninsula overlooking the Atlantic are spectacular. Two other interesting things of note were the mountain goats protecting the lighthouse and this is also the location of the Cross of the Coast of Death.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain

I've had an obsession with cathedrals after having read Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth many years ago. In Follett's book, the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela was featured near the conclusion of the story and I've been at awe that such grandiose and ornate examples of architecture could be constructed nearly a thousand years ago. On our recent adventure to Spain, we had the privilege to not only visit the Cathedral at Santiago de Compostela, but to also attend Easter mass. Consecrated in the year 1211, this wonderful symbol of Christianity has survived time and many struggles. Unfortunately though, time is also taking its toll and during our visit the cathedral was surrounded by scaffolding for planned cleanup and renovation.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Playa de Las Catedrales, Lugo, Spain

After our visit to the ancient ruins of Coaña, we decided it was time to make out way to the water to cool off. Our destination was Playa de Las Catedrales. Located on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, the natural arches and caves of the area were created over time by tidal and wave erosion. During low tide the area is known for its spectacular beach and the caves that are hidden during hide tides. Unfortunately, we visited during the mid-tide and were relegated to the tops of the cliffs. I wanted to point out the interesting geology here.. note the sedimentary layers that make up the cathedrals.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Castro de Coaña, Asturias, Spain

Dating prior to the fourth century, very little is known about Castro de Coaña or the people that inhabited this site. We had the pleasure of visiting these historic ruins during our tour of Spain.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - San Miguel de Lillo, Oviedo, Spain

Passing through the northern province of Asturias, we pulled into the town of Oviedo, Spain, to visit the San Miguel de Lillo. Consecrated in the early year of 848, this Roman Catholic church had early aspirations of being a basilica. Unfortunately, the larger original structure collapsed sometime in the 12th or 13th century and the project was never completed. One feature of this church that remains intact is the magnificent lattice work above each window. If you look closely, you will observe that the lattice work is sculpted from a single piece of stone. The lattice above the window on the southern wall is the most stunning.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Picos de Europa, Asturias, Spain

As we made our way through the Asturian countryside, our itinerary had a scheduled stop to hike Los Pico de Europa. Though we did not plan to hike the entire 24Km from Puente Poncebos to Cain and back, we did have the idea we'd attempt to hike at least 3 to 4Km to the high point at Los Collaos. Unfortunately, less than 1Km from the parking lot, a storm rolled in packing horizontal rains and wind gusts of up to 30mph. We thought it wise to turn back and save this National Park adventure for some future trip to Spain. During our short hike we did manage to take a few photographs of the spectacular views and we found a geocache.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - A View From Atop Monte Igueldo, San Sebastián, Spain

On the first day following our separation from the school sponsored tour, we spent the night at a hotel atop Monte Igueldo. Monte Iguelo overlooks the Basque town of San Sebastián, Spain. The views from atop the summit are spectacular and offer a panorama of the Bahía de la Concha and the surrounding coastline and mountains. During our stay we also managed to visit Faro del Monte Igueldo, the lighthouse located on the northern slope of the mountain.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia, Barcelona, Spain

You are probably catching on to the theme at this point in our Spanish adventure that ancient Roman Catholic cathedrals are what we love to visit. There is no place within the United States where you can capture the essence of the history and the architecture like you can in Europe. To wander beneath the arches and buttresses, knowing those from the middle ages many centuries past walked these very stones, is a feeling like no other.

The Cathedral of the Holy Cross and Saint Eulalia is actually one of the newer cathedrals of Spain. Consecrated in 1448, the Gothic style cathedral took 150 years to construct and is actually built over the top of the foundations from at least two prior churches.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..