SPAIN  |  Santander, Spain Travel Guide
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San Vicente de la Barquera

San Vicente de la Barquera

Near Cantabria’s western border with Asturias on the coast is San Vicente, a fanciful walled fishing village situated on the small estuary of San Vicente with the snow-capped mountains of the Picos de Europa looming in the distance. During the 19th century the village enjoyed the honor of serving as the summer residence of the Spanish court. The transcendental Barrio Pesquera dates from a much earlier era with the ruins of a 15th-century Castillo overlooking it and the town’s Puerta de Poniente. Next to it, the 13th-century Gothic Iglesia de Santa María de los Ángeles, above, is the oldest surviving monument in the village, though numerous restorations can be dated to later periods. Along with its burgeoning tourism industry, fishing has long been the prime industry in San Vicente and in the neighboring villages of the area, to which the former serves as a gateway if arriving from Santander. As early as the 13th century the town claimed a government monopoly on fishing rights to the Río Deva (which explicitly excluded neighboring Unquera), one of the two trout and salmon rivers that have long served to bolster the seafood fishing industry. The other, the Río Nansa, flows through the fjord-like estuary, Ría de Tina Menor before draining into the sea. Now, Unquera has acquired a reputation and industry of its own, with countless water-rats flocking to its river bearing canoes and kayaks.

Last updated January 12, 2012
Posted in   Spain  |  Santander
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