Holidays in Asturias and
Oviedo by Steve Greenwood
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Asturias is situated on the
north coast of Spain, with the Cantabrian Sea to the north and the regions
of Cantabria to the east, Castilla & Leon to the south and Galicia
to the west. Due to its wild and rugged terrain, the territories along
this northern coast of Spain never succumbed to the Moorish invasion, which
virtually overran the whole of Spain in the 8th century. During the time,
the local hero Pelayo along with a small army initiated the re-conquest
with a victory at the battle of Covadonga in 722. His remains have been
interred in the Santa Cueva (Holy Cave) that is now a place of pilgrimage.
|Oviedo capital city
Oviedo is the capital of
Asturias and the administrative and commercial centre of the region. The
city was one of the few areas to stay out of the hands of the Moors during
their occupation of Spain and some very early pre-Romanesque churches still
survive here and the surrounding area. Oviedo is just 25km from the northern
coast, the Costa Verde, and this is where many visitors head towards characterised
by its unspoiled beaches and lush green countryside.
Oviedo holiday attractions
Many of the historical monuments
in Oviedo have been destroyed in its long and sometimes violent history,
but a few do survive in the compact city centre. The Cathedral of San Salvador
was erected in the late 14th century over a previous cathedral dating from
the 8th century.xxx
Century Church of San Salvador at Valdedios
It has a tall and elaborate
Gothic tower and its holy Chamber the Cámara Santa, built by Alfonso
II, is a shrine built to preserve holy relics brought from Toledo during
occupation by the Moors. The Asturias Museum of Fine Arts can be found
in three buildings in the old part of Oviedo. Here can be found a large
collection of fine arts including paintings from the 19th and 20th century,
along with many sculptures, photographs and drawings.
Verde, Asturias, Spain
Asturias is a wild and diverse
province that is noted for its rugged coastline, dramatic cliffs and mountainous
The Asturian coastline between
rivers Ribadeo and Deva is called the Costa Verde (Green Coast) because
of its lush vegetation, rolling pastures and diverse species of trees.
This is as a result of the
region's climate being more varied than that of southern parts of Spain
with increased rainfall and generally colder spells. The main attraction
of the Costa Verde is the many coves with sandy beaches, overlooked by
steep cliffs and cattle grazing on the green vegetation on top.
|Picos de Europa National
The Picos de Europa forms
part of the Cantabrian mountain range and is located just 20km inland from
the northern coast of Spain. The Picos de Europa was the first National
Park of this classification in Spain and in total covers 65,000 hectares
in the combined regions of Cantabria, Asturias and the province of Leon.
The mountains are comprised almost entirely of limestone and have been
dramatically shaped by glacial action retreating after the last ice age.
For this reason, they are an excellent destination for activity holidays
and people who like outdoor activities such as walking, climbing, mountaineering,
trekking, caving, kayaking and fishing.
The landscape is wonderfully
diverse and includes high summits with massive drops of up to 2.3km. There
are also lakes of crystal clear water; hillside forests of beech and oak
groves, fast flowing rivers and lush meadows with green pastures. Animals
that can be seen in the National Park include mountain deer, wild boars,
buzzards and occasional bears and wolves.
of the Picos De Europa, Asturias, Spain
In all, Asturias offers a
wonderful green and rugged coastline with sandy beaches, interesting coves
and historic capital city. Spain offers more than just the Costa del Sol,
and it is hugely diverse across all regions with Asturias being no exception.
The Green Coast along with its small, idyllic fishing villages can offer
a refreshing change for a beach holiday in Spain, and the Picos de Europa
ideal for those interested in outdoor activity pursuits.
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