Sunday, March 05, 2017

Pontevedra Pensées: 5.3.17

The practice (art?) of doing a runner from a restaurant is known in Spain as un sinpa. From sin pagar, 'without paying'. There's a group of Romanians up in NW Spain who seem to specialise in this, booking large venues, downing the food and booze and then dashing for their cars. In one case, their brilliant strategy was to do a Conga out of the door. See here and here. One confusing aspect of this case is that the Romanians are said to be Roma. Or gypsies. For both groups, of course, these miscreants are doing a great disservice in strengthening the stereotypes.

Just what we need in Galicia. We already have 245, 000 hectares of the eucalyptus trees which contribute to and benefit from our regular fires. So, it was warming(Geddit?) to read that the Xunta is aiming for 425,000 hectares by 2032. It's a cash crop, of course.

Thanks to their inventiveness - e g. charging municipal taxes for everything on your property they label an asset  - 80% of Galicia's city/town councils now rake in more than they did in the pre-Crash year of 2007. Perhaps the best example I've read of was hitting the autovia companies for the highways they manage. Impressive. Except when you're reading of the latest fraudulent politician or business executive with offshore funds which he or she will be keeping and spending after a short spell in a luxury jail. If they're unlucky.

As you read of Trump's allegations against Obama and, specifically, his use of 'bad' and 'sick', recall the comments in yesterday's article about how the use of technology allows the people behind him to identify which adjectives will cause the greatest impact on the internet. On Twitter specifically. Perhaps here we have the explanation for the paucity of Trump's public vocabulary. It was suggested months ago that this was not an accident but a deliberate strategy. Now we know this is likely to be true.

Which reminds me:-

 1. More from those US evangelist nutters:-
  • Gohmert told his wife on the night of the election that: If it doesn’t go well, I’m probably going to be in jail within four years because I’m going to be part of the Christian-loving group that they say is hateful. 
  • There’s an anointing on Trump. And God literally makes his enemies look foolish.
2. Sightings of UFOs have increased fourfold since the 1990s. Experts think this is because we have become more deranged. That great facilitator for mental illness, the internet, is also to blame.

Moving from Right to Left . . . 

There are Liberals and Liberals. The fascinating (and probably) seminal article I've posted below will explain why I say this. The author, David Goodheart, was a co-founder and then editor of the very estimable Prospect magazine. Towards the end, he describes his form of liberalism, to which I like to think I have long subscribed. The article, by the way, should be read by everyone who thinks support for Brexit comes largely from narrow-minded, bigots and racists. Though I doubt many of my readers are in this box.

By the way . . . The word Liberal means 'rampant communist' in the USA. Except when it comes to economics. Where it means the opposite.

Finally . . . Another cartoon to lighten the mood:-


Brexit and the election of Donald Trump — the two biggest protest votes in modern democratic history — marked not so much the arrival of the populist era in western politics as its coming of age.

Since the turn of the century, western politics has had to make room for a range of voices preoccupied with national borders and pace of change, appealing to people who feel displaced by a more open, ethnically fluid, graduate-favouring economy and society, designed by and for the new elites.

Many liberal-minded people in Britain and elsewhere have been uncomfortable about granting space to these political forces and regard hostility to the openness required by European integration and a more global economy as simply irrational, if not xenophobic.

Some of those remainers reported waking up the day after the Brexit vote feeling, at least briefly, that they were living in a foreign country. If that was, indeed, the case, they were merely experiencing, in reverse, what a majority of people apparently feel every day.

For several years now more than half of British people have agreed with this statement (and similar ones): “Britain has changed in recent times beyond recognition; it sometimes feels like a foreign country and this makes me feel uncomfortable.” Older people, the least well educated and the least affluent are most likely to concur, but there is quite widespread support from other groups too.

Even allowing for the querulous spirit that opinion polls often seem to inspire, this is an astonishing thing for the majority of the population to agree to in a country as stable, peaceful, rich and successful as today’s Britain. It is a similar story in America, where 81% of Trump supporters said life was better 50 years ago. What is going on?

The old distinctions of class and economic interest have not disappeared but are increasingly overlaid by a larger and looser one — between the people who see the world from Anywhere and the people who see it from Somewhere.

Anywheres dominate our culture and society. They tend to do well at school and then usually move from home to a residential university in their late teens and on to a career in the professions that might take them to London or even abroad for a year or two.

Such people have portable, “achieved” identities, based on educational and career success, which make them generally comfortable and confident with new places and people.

Somewheres are more rooted and usually have “ascribed” identities — Scottish farmer, working-class Geordie, Cornish housewife — based on group belonging and particular places.

One core group of Somewheres has been called the “left behind” — mainly older white working-class men with little education. They have lost economically, with the decline of well-paid jobs for people without qualifications, and culturally, too, with the disappearance of a distinct working-class culture and the marginalisation of their views in the public conversation.

Somewhere ambivalence about recent social trends spreads far beyond this group, however, and is shared by many in all social classes, especially the least mobile. Despite recent increases in geographical mobility, about 60% of British people still live within 20 miles of where they lived when they were 14.

Of course, few of us belong completely to either group — we all have a mix of achieved and ascribed identities — and there is a large minority of Inbetweeners. Even the most cosmopolitan and mobile members of the Anywhere group retain some connection with their roots and even the most small-town Somewhere might go on holiday abroad.

Anywheres and Somewheres do not overlap precisely with more conventional social categories. Rather, they are looser alignments of sentiment and world-view. Both groups include a huge variety of people and social types — Somewheres range from northern working-class pensioners to home counties market town Daily Mail readers; Anywheres from polished business executives to radical academics.

The two value clusters are clearly visible in a host of opinion and belief surveys — with Anywheres making up 20-25% of the population, compared with about half for Somewheres (and the rest Inbetweeners).

My new book, The Road to Somewhere, is a plea for a less headstrong Anywhere liberalism. The Anywheres have counted for too much in the past 25 years — their sense of political entitlement startlingly revealed by their reaction to the Brexit and Trump votes — and populism, in its many shapes and sizes, has arisen as a counterbalance to their dominance throughout the developed world. It can be a destructive counterbalance, but if we are to be tough on populism we must be tough on the causes of populism too — and one of those causes has been Anywhere overreach.

The Anywhere ideology — or “progressive individualism”, as I call it — is a world-view for more or less successful individuals who also care about society. It places a high value on autonomy, mobility and novelty and a much lower value on group identity, tradition and national social contracts (faith, flag and family).

Most Anywheres are comfortable with immigration, European integration and the spread of human rights legislation, all of which tend to dilute the claims of national citizenship. They are not in the main antinational — indeed they can be quite patriotic — but they also see themselves as citizens of the world.

Work, and in fact life itself, is about individual self-realisation. Anywheres are comfortable with the achievement society; meritocracy and most forms of equality (though not necessarily economic) are second nature to them. Where the interests of Anywheres are at stake — in everything from reform of higher education to gay marriage — things happen. Where they are not, the wheels grind more slowly, if at all.

By contrast, the Somewheres are more socially conservative and communitarian by instinct. They are not on the whole highly religious, unlike their equivalents in America, and only a small number on the far-right fringes are hard authoritarians or consistent xenophobes. They are moderately nationalistic and if English quite likely to identify as such.

They feel uncomfortable about many aspects of cultural and economic change — such as mass immigration, an achievement society in which they struggle to achieve, the reduced status of non-graduate employment and more fluid gender roles.

They are also, in the main, modern people for whom women’s equality and minority rights, distrust of power, free expression, consumerism and individual choice are part of the air they breathe. They want some of the same things that Anywheres want, but they want them more slowly and in moderation. Their world-view is best described by a phrase that many would regard as a contradiction in terms: “decent populism”.

The powerlessness of British Somewheres in recent times is shown by, among other things, the miserable state of vocational education and apprenticeship provision in a graduate-dominated society; the double infrastructure failure in housing (in the southeast of England) and transport (in the north); and the policy bias against domesticity and family life.

Both Anywhere and Somewhere world-views are valid and legitimate, and their divergence from each other is neither new nor surprising. What has changed is the balance of power, and numbers, between them.

Until 30 or 40 years ago, the Somewhere world-view was completely dominant. It was British common sense. Then, in the space of two generations, an Anywhere common sense has risen to challenge and partly replace it.

This is thanks, above all, to two things: the legacy of baby-boomer 1960s liberalism and the expansion of higher education, which has played a key role in disseminating that legacy.
The helter-skelter expansion of higher education in the past 25 years — and the elevation of educational success to the gold standard of social esteem — has been one of the most important, and least understood, developments in British society. It has been a liberation for many, and for others a symptom of their declining status.

For Somewheres, post-industrialism has largely abolished manual labour, reduced the status of lower-income males and weakened the national social contract — neither the affluent nor employers feel the obligations towards “their” working class that they once did.

The Anywhere ideology is invariably a cheerleader for restless change. When change seems to benefit everyone — such as broad-based economic growth or improved healthcare — the conflict
between the two world-views recedes. But when change does not seem to benefit everyone — as with the arrival of a mass immigration society and a mass higher education system for almost half of school-leavers — the restrained populism of Somewheres can find a voice.

Somewheres are often said to be myopic, unable to see that accepting change brings longer-term advantage. Yet it is also the case that the people from Anywhere with more fluid identities and an educational passport to thrive are well equipped to benefit from change, while the people from Somewhere are often not, even in the long run.

Anywheres tend to see Somewhere conservatism as irrational or as a backlash against the advance of liberal social values. It can be that, but it is also to be expected that people who feel buffeted by external events with little political agency, social confidence or control over their destinies will cling all the harder to those spaces where they can exercise some control — in the familiar routines of their daily lives and beliefs.

Somewhere conservatism may have shed many of the historical trappings of mid-20th century classic working-class conservatism — the Protestant faith, jingoism, white supremacy — but the instinct to stick with the familiar and to those small zones of control and esteem means Somewheres are often hostile both to market change and to top-down state paternalism.

Most Somewheres are not bigots and xenophobes. Indeed, much of the “great liberalisation” of the past 40 years in attitudes to race, gender and sexuality has been absorbed and accepted by the majority of Somewheres. Yet compared with Anywheres, the acceptance has been more selective and tentative, and has not extended to enthusiasm for mass immigration or European integration. Somewheres are seldom anti-immigrant but are invariably anti-mass immigration. They still believe there is such a thing as society.

Eric Kaufmann, a leading authority on nationalism and ethnicity, has shown that the Brexit and Trump backlashes were not only about education and mobility but also about a core values divide, relating to order and authority, that cuts across age, income, education and even political parties in western democracies.

There is a cluster of questions that pollsters ask about the importance of children being obedient, support for capital punishment and so on — known as the authoritarian-libertarian axis — and a position closer to the authoritarian end of the axis turns out to be the key predictor of whether someone voted for Brexit or not.

Strong authoritarianism is the instinct of only a small minority but the broader desire of Somewheres for a more stable, ordered world is now being heard in the parliaments and chancelleries of the developed world. And Generation Z, everyone born after 2001, seems to confirm this new tilt towards caution and conservatism.

Kaufmann emphasises the ethnic aspect of this shift: “As large-scale immigration challenges the demographic sway of white majorities, the gap between whites who embrace change and those who resist it is emerging as the key political cleavage across the West. Compared with this cultural chasm, material differences between haves and have nots . . . are much less important.”

For most of my adult life I have been firmly in the Anywhere camp, and by background and lifestyle remain so. In the mid-1990s I was the founder-editor of Prospect, the monthly current affairs magazine, that was loosely affiliated to the liberal centre-left and endorsed new Labour’s arrival in 1997.

But while editing Prospect, I also began to detach myself, intellectually, from orthodox liberalism — in particular after writing a rather speculative essay for the magazine headlined “Too Diverse?”. It raised questions about the conflict between rapidly increasing ethnic diversity and the feelings of trust and solidarity required to sustain a generous welfare state.

The essay caused an almighty row, at least on the centre-left. I was accused of “nice racism” and “liberal Powellism”. That brief notoriety triggered a lasting interest in immigration, race, multiculturalism, national identity and so on. And the more I studied these things and tried to defend my initial, rather accidental, scepticism, the more I became convinced that the left had got on the wrong side of the argument on mass immigration (too enthusiastic), and integration of minorities and national identity (too indifferent).

On matters of culture and community, the sometimes socially conservative intuitions of mainstream public opinion came to seem to me at least as rational and decent as the individualistic egalitarianism of the middle-class, university-educated left that now dominates the Labour Party.

Dogmatism and groupthink are not the preserve of poorly educated Somewheres. Indeed, progressive Anywheres tend to be more socially tolerant than Somewheres but less politically tolerant.

I am a kind of Anywhere apostate but I like to think that I can see the point of both world-views. My social networks still largely comprise Anywheres but when the conversation turns to politics I often find myself looking on as an outsider.

That does mean I sometimes hear Anywhere views in their most unvarnished form — my email inbox was full of angry contempt for the ignorant masses from left-wing professors in the days after the Brexit vote. And here are two examples of conversations I have been part of in the past few years that lend some support to Theresa May’s reprimand to the world citizens “from nowhere”.

At an Oxford college dinner six years ago I told my neighbour — Gus O’Donnell, then in his last few months as cabinet secretary, the most senior civil servant in the land — that I was writing a book about immigration. He replied: “When I was at the Treasury I argued for the most open door possible to immigration . . . I think it’s my job to maximise global welfare, not national welfare.”

I was surprised to hear this and asked the man sitting next to him, Mark Thompson — then director-general of the BBC — whether he believed global welfare should be put before national welfare, if the two should conflict. He defended O’Donnell and said he too believed global welfare was paramount.

Both men’s universalist views are perfectly legitimate and may reflect their moderately devout Catholic upbringings. They are views that are quite normal in some circles and may now encompass up to 10% of public opinion. O’Donnell, moreover, thinks that his views about immigration are, notwithstanding some short-term losers, in the interests of the average British person. But is it healthy for democracy when such powerful people hold views that are evidently at odds with the core political intuitions of the majority of the public?

If these were just private views that had no bearing on the jobs both men did, it would not matter. But O’Donnell was the permanent secretary of the Treasury when important decisions were being made about immigration — not least the decision in 2004 to open the British labour market to the former communist EU states seven years before required by EU law, and seven years before any other large EU state did so. By all accounts he was a powerful advocate for openness.

In 2007 I was at a 60th birthday party for a well-known Labour MP. Many of the leading intellectual figures of the British centre-left were also there and the conversation turned to Gordon Brown’s infamous “British jobs for British workers” in a speech he had given a few days before at the Labour conference.

The people around me entered a bidding war to express their outrage at Brown’s slogan. Chris Huhne, who went on to become a Liberal Democrat cabinet minister in the coalition government, declared to general approval that it was “racism, pure and simple”.

I remember nodding along but then thinking afterwards how weird the conversation would have sounded to most other people in this country. Brown’s phrase may have been clumsy and cynical but he didn’t say British jobs for white British workers.

In most other places in the world today, and indeed probably in Britain itself until about 25 years ago, such a statement about a job preference for national citizens would have seemed so banal as to be hardly worth uttering. But in 2007 the idea of a borderless Europe and the language of universal rights had ruled it beyond the pale, at least for this elite centre-left group.

Last October a similar row blew up over a suggestion, indirectly from Amber Rudd, the home secretary, that companies should inform the Home Office of the proportion of their non-British employees when applying to sponsor a foreign worker for a work permit. The intention was to signal to employers that they might be overdependent on foreign workers and not doing enough to train British ones.

There was an indignant outcry from business and liberal Britain — in some cases absurdly citing the treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany — and the measure was quickly dropped.

A YouGov poll, however, found 59% support for the proposal and 26% against — proportions that almost map on to my estimate of the Anywhere and Somewhere populations of Britain.

Both Gordon Brown and Amber Rudd were addressing a real issue. As part of the greater freedom and efficiency of British business since the 1980s has come a weakening of the idea of the national corporate citizen, the implicit obligation to train and employ British citizens.

As larger businesses have become more global and footloose, employers have come to expect complete freedom to import skilled workers and in some cases unskilled workers. It did not even occur to the Labour Party to complain about this.

Business self-interest and the progressive world-view — with its stress on openness, rights and equality — have both become uncoupled from commonsense notions of economic justice, still seen through a national lens.

This uncoupling illustrates how the gap between the secular liberal Anywhere world-view that dominates our political parties, governmental and social institutions and the intuitions of the ordinary citizen has become the great divide in British life.

Can British politics broker a new settlement between the Anywheres and the Somewheres? There is a lot at stake. If Somewhere interests are not better accommodated into the mainstream, then further shocks like the Brexit vote are possible.


Eamon said...

I haven't seen anything from Alfred the great for some time on here. If you are reading this Alfie then let me tell you that you may end up on the Homer email list where you will see that there is some doubt about Homer being blind. You will get an email about every half hour in your email box so you will certainly be kept busy. I can tell you that Homer was blind but not from birth. His favourite expression was god blind me and eventually he got his wish. It is now a well known phrase in parts of Britain usually spoken as "cor blimey" as a result of students being hounded at school by teachers insisting that every child should read Homer's works.

Colin Davies said...

ROFL, Eamon. Alfie wasn't on the mail list. Of course, it wasn't intended that people should reply to all.

Eamon said...

No problem for me as I am collecting all the email addresses I am getting and selling them on as spam contacts. You can't beat modern technology. Before you close down your Facebook account get Homer on there and make some money.

Colin Davies said...

Too late. I did it yesterday . . . But I have 13 days left to change my mind . . .

Eamon said...

@Colin - I can see that you are not taking this Homer subject seriously so here is a bit more on the subject. There has been a lot written about Homer and also there is a cult known as Homer Sapiens. Experts on Homer all agree that he was blind but the problem is which god did he invoke. Over the years there have been schisms and to give an example the Vikings were one. They believed the god was Thor and no amount of facts given to them would they agree so they split from the Homer Sapiens. They brought the expression Thor blind me to England and hence as in my previous post the expression "cor blimey" which as you can see is a corruption of Thor blind me and not the word god. It was common amongst Vikings to be known as Thor bred. We have the same corrupted word Thorougbred which technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed. Thoroughbreds are considered "hot-blooded" horses that are known for their agility, speed and spirit. The same as the god Thor. Just a few facts you may find interesting.

Colin Davies said...

Wonderful, Eamon. Many thanks for the out-loud laugh.

Alfred B. Mittington said...

Dear Eamon, dear Colin,

You are both raving mad.

Which does not surprise me, as one of you is from Liverpool and the other probably from Ireland.

I have nothing against people from Liverpool or the Irish, but they should not allow you people to run free in the civilized world.

As for Homer: he may have been blind but at least he had a great vision which is still with us today. Which is more than one can say for most of our contemporary intellectuals!

Alfred B

Colin Davies said...

Especially the one I'm thinking of!

Eamon said...

Well Alfred I can see you are a fan of Homer. I saw the Homer programme on the television whilst visiting England some years ago but it had been Americanized so bore no resemblance to what I had learned during my Latin studies. Trying to educate people using cartoons is not always the best approach. Regarding the Irish and raving madness I see you are not aware that the first mental asylums were opened in Ireland at the time of the Viking raids. People were forced to take shelter in tall towers but as the towers were small only a few ever reached safety. Being locked up had side affects which are still prevalent today. A century or two later a German author wrote a story about a young lady who was trapped in one of these towers and she used her long hair as a rope to allow her lover access. We Irish have great imaginations and can come up at the drop of a hat with some outrageous stories. I think you would enjoy some of the Irish tales that are handed down. My favourite is the long woman's grave. Follow this link

Rich L said...

Enjoyed your bloggery. I am looking at living in O Rosal, a completely emotional choice. Can you share any rational thoughts on the area before I jump in ( I will likely jump in any case!) ..I tried to message Dylan who is mentioned in another blog but it won't send, is the number still valid? I've tried adding+34,
Thank you in advance

Colin Davies said...

Great area. See this. And additional bits below.


Author: Colin Davies 18.5.05 [Note: Many more foreigners there now]

This guide covers the region stretching westwards from Tui to La Guardia [A Garda, in Galician]. It takes in the councils of Tomiño, O Rosal and La Guardia. It's known as O Baixo Miño in Galician. Or El Bajo Miño in Spanish. It's the most southern part of Galicia, the province of Pontevedra and the Rias Baixas. It tends not to feature in guide books, being off the tourist track.

It's a place I've visited a lot in the past couple of years and I've grow ever fond of it. Indeed, if I were forced to leave my house in Pontevedra, this is where I'd move to, especially if I were after a less urban life.

Its defining features are the river Miño to the south and the market gardens, vineyards and forests which stretch northwards across the fluvial plain and up the slopes of the mountains which separate the region from Gondomar, Bayona and Vigo. Across the Miño lie the towering mountains of northern Portugal.

At the western end of the region lies the broad estuary of the Miño itself, bordered by fluvial beaches in Camposancos on the Spanish side and Caminha on the Portuguese side. Looming above the former- and staring very much across to the latter - is the vertiginous 'hill' of _ HYPERLINK "" _Santa Tecla/Tegra._

It's an area famed for having the best microclimate in Galicia. Putting this another way, it has more sun and less rain than anywhere else. Understandably, then, it is home to one of the two great Albariño wine-growing regions of Galicia. As well as to a good deal of fruit and vegetable growing.

Scenically, it's similar to the rest of the Rias Baixas but there is more vegetation and less construction. And the forests of pine and oak have not all been replaced by the ubiquitous eucalyptus of elsewhere.

The local _ HYPERLINK "" _architectural idiom_ owes something to Portugal and the inhabitants of the region also seem to share with their neighbours across the river a greater love of flowers and gardens than is the case further north. Overall, it's a very pretty part of Galicia. Even the local _ HYPERLINK "" _granite_ seems superior to that elsewhere.

Colin Davies said...

From a property-buying perspective, the region seems to me to be a better bet than both the coastal strip up from Bayona [crowded and expensive] and the mountainous areas east of Santiago, Pontevedra and Vigo. Apart from a superior climate, my perception is that there is a better mix of nature and humanity and more opportunities to either buy [or have built] a property which is not cheek by jowl with neighbours whose aesthetic taste may be somewhat lacking. A couple of local builders are developing small communities of one or two story houses which are very much more appealing [even as modern properties] than the sort of thing one sees in or nearer to the larger cities. Overall, if you're looking to Galicia for a quiet, rural or semi-rural life, then you have to take a good look at this region.

As for the negatives, well there is little of the cosmopolitanism of a city like Santiago, Vigo or Pontevedra within a minimum of 15 to 20 minutes drive. Tui is a pleasant city but rather smaller and more provincial than any of these grander places. As are Valença and Caminha across the Miño. If you crave the cultural activities and events on offer [albeit only in Spanish] in Vigo, then you'd be best off living in or near the city. Or, at worst, west or north west of Tui so that you can easily access the new motorway link.

o Getting There
o Cities/Towns - Tui, La Guardia, Tomiño, O Rosal
o Relevant web Sites
o Trips outside the region
o Beaches
o Festivals
o Sporting Activities
o Campsites
o Museums
Appendix 1: Accommodation in each city/town
Appendix 2: Tui's History
Appendix 3: Tui's Sights
Appendix 4: Detailed Maps of the Region
Appendix 5: Distances

Colin Davies said...


The region is easily reached by motorway from anywhere in Spain [AP9, A55 and A52] and Portugal [A3]

Likewise, local travel is easy on both National roads and motorways. Indeed, Vigo has been brought within 15 to 20 minutes of Tui by a new motorway over the hills. At the other end of the region, Bayona and Vigo are reached by a pretty coastal road [or 'corniche'] and [in the case of Vigo] a motorway after Bayona that must have some of the best sea views in the world.

If you're flying, the relevant info can be found in my guides to Galicia and Pontevedra on _ HYPERLINK "" _www.colindavies.net_  The nearest airport is Vigo's, which is only 15 minutes away from Tui. Santiago airport is 45 minutes away. As is that of Oporto in Portugal. All of these airports are linked to Tui by motorway.
The road from Tui to La Guardia is a good N road but can get crowded at weekends [mainly with Portuguese day trippers]. A parallel new road is planned further inland but the exact route hasn't yet been decided. This clearly needs to be taken into consideration if you are looking for a house or a plot.

Trains run from Vigo, Ourense and Oporto

Coaches run between Vigo, Tui and La Guardia, Tui and Pontevedra, and Tui and Irun on the border with France



This the only city in the region but, in truth, it's no more than a large town. With only 16,000 inhabitants, it's the smallest city in the Pontevedra province. It stands on a hillside, 55m above sea level. Probably because of its position as the first town on the Spanish side of the river, Tui was an important Roman settlement, then the court of Swavian and Visigoth kings and, later, an Episcopal see. And 200 years ago it was the capital of the Pontevedra province.  But its days of splendour and strategic importance are long gone and it now ranks, at best, only a few lines in most guide books. This is unfair but some of us would regard it as a blessing as it receives far fewer summer visitors than other cities in Galicia, partially compensated by Portuguese day trippers.

According to one of the myths with which Galicia abounds, Tui [like Pontevedra] has Greek origins. Pliny tells us there was a colony there and that the name of the city [Tyde] is associated with Tideus of Etolia, whose son Diomedes founded Tui. Yes, well. Maybe.

Here's what the Rough Guide says about it:-

Tui is the main Galician frontier town on the Miño, staring across to the neat ramparts of Portuguese Valença do Minho. The old town stands back from the river, tiered amid trees and stretches of ancient walls above the fertile riverbank. Sloping lanes, paved with huge slabs of granite, climb to the imposing fortress-like Cathedral dedicated to San Telmo, patron saint of fishermen; its military aspect is a distinctive mark of Tui, scene of sporadic skirmishes with the Portuguese throughout the Middle Ages. There are other churches of interest, too, such as the Romanesque San Telmo, or Gothic Santo Domingo with its ivy-shrouded cloisters. More memorable, though, is the lovely rambling quality of the place, coupled with a pair of enticing little river beaches.

Colin Davies said...

For more history of Tui than you might want, see Appendix 1

Its sights include the following, for which there is greater detail in Appendix 2:-

The Old Quarter: This is pretty, though, compared with Santiago and Pontevedra, quite _ HYPERLINK "" _small_. And it is built on a steeper _ HYPERLINK "" _incline_. But, as it says here, The old walled quarter of the city provides an exceptional example of a medieval town. There are several outstanding buildings emblazoned with family crests or adorned with the canopial arches characteristic of the 15th and 16th centuries. Walk down streets like Canicouba, Entrefornos, Corpo Santo or through the tunnels of Las Encerrada or _ HYPERLINK "" _La Misericordia_ and you'll see the Galician granite which evokes the history of times past.

Tui was always an important stage on the road to Santiago. It provided a Hospital for the pilgrims, now part of the excellent Diocesan Museum, where they could stay 3 nights. Here you will find a collection of sacred artefacts, as well as archaeological remains from the medieval city. The chapel  dedicated to the Virgin of Pilgrimage and the bridge in Ribadelouro known as the Bridge of Fevers [where the city's patron San Telmo became fatally ill] are testaments to Tui's place on the pilgrimage route. Nowadays, there is a hostel for pilgrims beside the cathedral.

The Romanesque-Gothic cathedral fortress. Rebuilt in the 18th century. Its _ HYPERLINK "" _Gothic facade_ is considered the most perfect of its style in Galicia. Has a lovely 13th century Gothic cloister that was modified in the 15th century; it features artistic capitals of Romanesque influence.

The church of San Bartolomé, 12th century but with  an 18th century neo-classical facade, the city's first cathedral

The church of _ HYPERLINK "" _Santo Domingo_, Gothic with Baroque additions

The church of _ HYPERLINK "" _San Pedro Telm__ HYPERLINK "" _o_, Baroque but showing Portuguese influence, devoted to the patron saint of Tui and built, they say, on the sight of his house

The church of _ HYPERLINK "" _San Francisco_. Neoclassical.

The Church of the _ HYPERLINK "" _Misericordia_
Santo Domingo park - lovely views of the river Miño and the cathedral

The Ancient Walls [Murallas]

The _ HYPERLINK "" _Convento de Clarisas_

Colin Davies said...

Monte Aloi Natural Park: This is off the Gondomar road, just a kilometre or so out of town. It is a magnificent area of 746 hectares which features a walled precinct from the Celtic-Romano era and a small chapel dedicated to San Xian [San Juan]. This was built in 1713, on top of a Romanesque church. Another feature of the park is the Casa Forestal. This building of strange design now serves as the Centro de Interpretación de Naturaleza. The park has a wide range of high-value flora [ including native caducifolios and exotic trees] and fauna typical of the mountains of the interior – foxes, rabbits, partridge, buzzards, kestrels, etc. It also has scenery of great beauty and, above all, several lookout points providing spectacular views not only of the valley of the Miño but also of Bayona, Vigo and the Atlantic Islands The peak of the mountain is presided over by a large stone cross. Just below the chapel is a cafe and _ HYPERLINK "" _restaurant_ run by a friendly family and offering grilled fish and meats done on a _ HYPERLINK "" _fire_ set in the nearby rocks. Very worth a visit.

The city's main tourist office is out on the road to Portugal. In addition, there used to be a kiosk you can still see in the Paseo de Calvo Sotelo in the little square in front of the police station. Now there is desk in the lobby of the police station itself.

For places to stay in Tui, See Appendix 1

Eating and Drinking in Tui

O Nuevo Cabalo Furado on Praza de Generalísimo, next to the cathedral and opposite the town hall. Expensive but excellent.

Jacquevi: Next door. Same comments.

O Vello Cabalo Furado, in Rua Seixas, down and round the corner. Equally good as its newer sister but cheaper.

La Cerilla, down in the Troncoso Gardens, behind this _ HYPERLINK "" _horses' statue_ in the main road from
Pontevedra [Paseo de Calvo Sotelo]

Pizza. 1. Happy Pizza. 2. Pizzeria di Marco, in Rua Seixas

Cafe Central: in c/. Monjas, on the way to the Convento Monjas de Clausura. Pleasant, old-fashioned place.

Tapas bars in the old quarter

Colin Davies said...


This is the most southern fishing port in Galicia. As usual in Spain, the newer part of the town is not particularly prepossessing but it has a very pleasant old quarter and port [La Marina] and the coastal roads on either side of it can be spectacular. La Guardia once belonged to the Templars and to the Chapter of Tui. It lies on the slopes of a mountain at whose peak is the magnificent mirador of Santa Tecla/Tegra/Trega. One of its most interesting streets in the old quarter is the Rua de los Malteses, which is lined with little houses.

Here's what The Rough Guide says about the town - In the mouth of the great river Minho, stands the workaday port of A Guarda, largely the modern creation of emigrants returning from PuertoRico. The main attraction here is the extensive remains of a 'celta' [pre-Roman fortified hill settlement], just above the town in the thick woods of Monte Santa Tecla.  A Guarda itself has a couple of beaches but there's a much better stretch of sand at the village of Camposancos about 4km south, facing Portugal and a small islet capped by the ruins of a fortified Franciscan monastery. A ferry links Camposancos with Caminha in Portugal.

And here's what the town's own brochure says - A Guarda is one of the most enchanting towns in Galicia. The Atlantic ocean, the river Miño and the mountain of Santa Trega [Tecla] form an extraordinary countryside of great natural and historical richness. When you combine with this the warmth of the people, the extraordinary gastronomy, the festivals and the romarías, you get in one town the essence of Galicia.

The Port: This is the meeting place for both locals and visitors. Where the daily activity of the small fishing boats mixes with the noise and bustle of those enjoying the many renowned restaurants. The terraces of the marine promenade are an ideal place to spend your time and to relax.

Monuments: En A Guarda you can find examples of religious, civil and popular art of different styles - The parish church of A Guarda, the church of San Lorenzo de Salcidos, the medieval Tower of Reló or the much admired cruceiros and petos de ánimas of popular Galician tradition. To all of these can be added the homes built by people returning from South America - the 'Indian Houses'.

Beaches: O Muiño and A Lamiña run for 2 kilometres along the banks of the river Miño. These are fluvial beaches and, thanks to the tides, have different degrees of saltiness. They are wooded areas, offering places to walk and picnic. Or just to retreat from the sun. Along the Atlantic coast there are the beaches of Area Grande and Fedorento, where you can take part in numerous nautical activities and sports.

Mount Santa Trega: The walled citania of Santa Trega is the outstanding example of Gaelic-Roman culture in Galicia and is the most visited place after Santiago de Compostela. At the peak there is a museum displaying pieces from various excavations, as well the ancient Hermitage of Santa Trega and lookout points giving _ HYPERLINK "" _spectacular views_ of both the valley and the mouth of the Miño as it flows into the Atlantic

Ferry to Portugal: One of the attractions of our town is the ferry which unites A Guarda with the Portuguese town of Caminha. The crossing takes 12 minutes and offers a vista which merits seeing - the river Miño, the Spanish coast, the Portuguese coast and the mouth of the river.

Turismo. 986 614 546

Colin Davies said...


Mount Santa Tecla: Continuing The Rough Guide's text - The ruins are about two thirds of the way up the mountain, a stiff thirty minute climb on foot - just follow the signs from the Tui side of the town centre. There's also a tarmac road up the hill but no bus. The celta was probably occupied about 600 to 200 BC and abandoned when the Romans established control over the north. Such settlements were common in southern Galicia and even more so in northern Portugal. The site consists of well over a hundred circular dwellings crammed tightly inside an encircling wall. A couple of them have been restored as full-size thatched huts. Most are excavated to a metre or so though some are still buried. Set in a thick pine grove on the bleak, seaward hillside, the ancient village forms a striking contrast with the humdrum roofscape of the modern town below. On the north side of the mountain there is also a large 'cromlech' or stone circle, while continuing upwards you pass along an avenue of much more recent construction, lined with the Stations of the Cross and best seen looming out of a mountain mist. Five minutes further on, at the top, are a church, a small archaeological museum of Celtic finds from the mountain and a hotel.

Church of Santa Maria. Built in the 16th century by Bishop Diego of Torquemada

For places to stay in La Guardia see Appendix 1

Eating and Drinking in La Guardia

Casa de Abuela

Il Maestro - A new Italian restaurant in Camposancos, fractionally down river from La Guardia, not far from the ferry port.

Colin Davies said...



Number of Romanesque churches. Santa Maria de Tebra [12th century] has a impressive polygonal apse.

The Towers of Tebra [13th century]

The Church of San Salvador de Tebra

Mirador of Alto da Portela

Places to eat in or near Tomiño

Tapas bar in the corner of of the main square

O Cortixo de San Martiño. On the main Tui-La Guardia road.

For places to stay in Tomiño, See Appendix 1

Final word on Tomiño - as you drive up towards it from the Tui-La Guardia road, you'll pass the wonderfully named Tomiño Cafeteria y Neumaticos. This is a combination of a cafe and a tyre shop, possibly unique in the world. It has a beautiful _ HYPERLINK "" _garden_.



The bridge of Tamuxe [San Miguel de Tabagón]

The Church of Santa Marina y Cristo

More than 50 cruceiros erected between the 16th and 18th centuries

The Mills of O Folón and O Picón:

The Mirador of Niño do Corvo

Vineyards and bodegas
For places to stay in O Rosal, see Appendix 1       

Colin Davies said...


South West Galicia: _ HYPERLINK "" _www.galicia-suroeste.com_

Tui - _ HYPERLINK "" _www.concellotui.org_ [Not much yet. Under construction]

La Guardia -   _ HYPERLINK "" _www.concellodaguarda.com_  and this, which is a lot quicker  _ HYPERLINK ""
Tomiño - _ HYPERLINK "" _www.concellotomino.com_ 

O Rosal - Nothing available as yet from the council. But there is this - _ HYPERLINK ""

Oia -

Portugal - _ HYPERLINK "" _Valença_ and _ HYPERLINK "" _Caminha_



Oia: The monastery of Santa Maria

Monte de A Grova in Bayona and Oia: Spectacular views and wild horses

Cruises in a catamaran up the Miño [Autna]

Vineyards and bodegas: Rutas de vino. O Condado wine area

Large cities/towns outside the region: Bayona [Parador. Stunning location on promontory.  Luxury thermal hotel (Talaso Atlantico) on the outskirts] Vigo, Pontevedra, Santiago,

Portugal: Pontedelima, Viana, Oporto, Valença [fortifications, market], Braga, Barcelos. Ferry trip to Caminha

Gondomar:   Drive from Tui. Sea views

Spa towns: Mondariz and Caldelas de Tui 

Salvaterra: The acropolis of Castro Alegre and the chapel of the Ascension. Casas solariegas. Medieval bridge at Fillaboa. Monte Castelo. Pazo de Petán. Pazo de la Inquisición.

As Neves: Pretty old quarter. Church [1668] of the Virgen de las Nieves. Spectacular views from the chapel of San Fins [670m].

Arbo: The  triple crucerio and strange votive tower in the parish of Barcela

Crecente: An old Celtic settlement. Tower and ruins of Fornelos [7th century], Pazo de Barreiro [16th century]. Romanesque apse of the church of San Pedro de Crescente. And the chapel and remains of the monastery of Albeos

Colin Davies said...

Farther Afield

The Atlantic Islands [Cies]: By boat from either Vigo or Bayona

The Ribera Sagra: Cañon del Sil

Ribadavia, Ourense, Monforte


If these are your only interest, this is not really the area for you as the beaches here are not as good as those further north, either along the coast or in the rias of Vigo, Pontevedra or Arousa

If it's sea beaches you want, then you are confined to those just north of La Guardia,  Fedorento and Arena Grande, or Carreiro, which is just south of the the little port area

In addition to these, there are [better] fluvial beaches at Camposancos, O Muiño and As Eiras

Or you can pop across to Portugal [via the bridge near Guián or the ferry from La Guardia] for the beach at Caminha or the wilder Atlantic beaches further down the coast



27 January: Romaría de San Juan en Monte Aloia

Holy Week processions

Easter Sunday: Festa do Angula [Meixón] do Sábalo[Fiesta of the Eels], and of Lamprey, trout, amongst others

First Sunday after Easter: Feast of San Telmo. Gigantes and cabuzedos

July: Procession in honour of the Virgin Mary of Las Angustias

7 September: Romaría of the Virgin of Las Angustias en Monte Aloia

8 September: Feast of Santa María de Aguía en Randufe

29 September: Feast of San Miguel en Pazos de Rei

O Rosal

5 May: Feast of San Isidro 

8 April, Fiesta del Vino da Bisbarra do Rosal

22 July: Feast of Santa Magdalena 

Last week-end in July: Festival of Albariño wine

25-26 August: Fiesta da Solla 

12 October: A Pilarica  

11 November: Feast of San Martino , Magostos

La Guardia

Last Sunday in June: Feira-Festa da Langosta: Crayfish festival and fair

Last weekend in June: Festa do Roscón de Xema. Fiesta of Rosca, a large pastry

2nd Sunday in August: Pilgrimage to the top of Santa Tecla/Trega. A 'veritable battle of red wine'.

Colin Davies said...


2nd Sunday[?] in June: Rapa das Bestas in Morgadáns.

3rd Sunday in June[?]: Curro [horse round-up and breaking] in San Cibrán

17.7.05: Curro??


Mid may: Un Curro de Las Valga

1st Saturday in June[?]: Curro in Val Miñor

5 June: Curro in Torroña

2nd Saturday and Sunday in June[?]: Curro in Mougas


Last Sunday in August: Festival of Condado region wine


3rd weekend in April: Festa da Lamprea: Festival of Lamprey.

1st August: Romería de San Fins

As Neves

Romaría de Santa Maria de Ribarteme: A procession of coffins


First weekend of March: Arribada de la Carabela Pinta. Re-enactment of the return of Columbus's ship

Ribeira Sacra/Ribera Sagra

Mid March: Festival of wine in Chantada

Easter Saturday and Sunday: Festival of wine in Quiroga


End April/Early May: Festival of Ribeiro wine


              Club, Goián
              Kayak race down the river mid August

Horse riding
              Bayona, Camposancos

Route along the Miño from Tui to Caldelas de Tui. No. P. R-G 19 in the booklet 'Galicia Al Paso', available from Tourist offices

Route of the petrogliphs, from Bayon. No. P. R-G 62 in the booklet 'Galicia Al Paso'


Rio Miñor, near Gondomar

Rio Tea, near Salvaterra

Rio Termes, near Arbo and As Neves

Rio Uma, near Ponteareas and Salvaterra



Club Nautico San Telmo in Tui

Port in A Guarda

Colin Davies said...


Estanco de Oro

This is a large, apparently well-equipped, riverside campsite about 7km out of Tui on the Tui-La Guardia road [C550]. Tel. 986 63 36 52. The brochure has a good English section, which is very encouraging. There are wooden bungalows as well as sites for caravans and tents.

Camping Santa Tecla. A kilometre or so from La Guardia


Tui: Diocesan museum, opposite the cathedral. Truly impressive and dirt cheap.

La Guardia: Citania de Santa Tecla museum, at the top of Mount Santa Tecla. Archeological

O Rosal: Municipal museum


Note that greater detail for all these options can be seen in excellent brochures available from Turismo offices in any town. There are separate brochures for hotels and casas rurales.


The comments are from The Rough Guide

  Stars         Address       Tel.           Fax.                               Email and Web Hotels _ HYPERLINK "" _Parador San Telmo_ **** Avenida de Portugal 986 600300 986 602163 _ HYPERLINK "" _tui@parador.es_
The best and most expensive. Out on the road to Portugal Alfonso 1 *** In Gándaras-Guillarey 986 600282 986 603678 _ HYPERLINK "" _reservas@halfonsoprimero.com_ Apartahotel Colón *** Rúa Colón, 11 986 600223 986 600327 _ HYPERLINK "" _colonho@jet.es_ Colón Tuy *** Rúa Colón, 11 986 600223 986 600327 _ HYPERLINK "" _colonho@jet.es_        Large, comfort- able rooms, a pool and views of Portugal Hotel Balneario * Baños, Caldelas de Tui 986 629049 986 629005   Residential Hostals Cruceiro do Monte ** Carretera de Baiona, 23 986 600953 986 607575   San Telmo * Ave. de la Concordia, 88 986 603011     Hostals Alonso * Baños, Caldelas de Tui 986 639054     Generosa * Calvo Sotelo, 37 986 600055   Ageing gracefully and excellent value Casas Rurales Abadía de de Pelouro Axeito     Baños - Callelas de Tui 986 629235 986 639080   Casa Rectoral de Areas   Areas - Sta Mariña de Areas 986 603986 986 603517 O Rozo   A Devesa - Rebordans 986 627979 986 603133 _ HYPERLINK "" _casa@orozo.com_

Colin Davies said...


  Stars         Address       Tel.           Fax.                           Email and Web Residential Hotels Convento de San Benito ** Plaza de San Benito 986 611166 986611517  
  Novo Muiño ** Playa Camposancos 986 627279   _ HYPERLINK "" _correo@hotelesmolino.com_
  Elimar * Vincente Sobrino, 12     _ HYPERLINK "" _elimarhotel@elimarhotel.com_
  Hotels Brisamar * Donantes de Sangre, 72 986 613901 986 611999  
  Pazo Santa Tecla * Monte Santa Tecla 986 610002 986 611072  
  Residential Hostals Mar ** Playa Arena Grande 986 614550  
    Brasil * Brasil, 17 986 611136  
    Bruselas * Orense, 7 986 611121 986 611121   Casas Rurales           Leira Braulia   Outeiro - Campsancos 986 422204 986 422204 _ HYPERLINK "" _www.casaleirabraulia.com_

  Stars         Address       Tel.           Fax.         Email and Web Hotels Nueva Colina ** Plaza Calvo Sotelo, 5 986 622678 986 623050 _ HYPERLINK "" _nuevacolina@interbook.net_
  * Avenida de Generalisimo, 2 986 622078     Residential Hostal Asensio * Tollo, 2 [Goián] 986 620152    
  Casas Rurales           Casa de Reina   Vilachan - Tomiño 986 622274 986 622274  
  Fonte Grande   Salgosa - Tomiño 986 622195 986 622945  
  O Brosque   O Cotro, 10 Tomiño 986 623143 986 623  
  O Buxo   Barrio Cruceiro 3, Currás 986 633503 986 633503 _ HYPERLINK "" _www.turismoruralobuxo.com_
  Quinta do Ramo   O Ramo 5, Forcadela 986 622884 986 623422 _ HYPERLINK "" _www.quintadoramo.com_

  Stars         Address       Tel.           Fax.         Email and Web Hotels Brasilia * San Miguel de Tabagón 986 610966    
  Residential Hostal Juan Couso, 18 986 626308  
  Casas Rurales Casa Cabaquiros Carrascal-Pías-San Miguel de Tabagón 986 611844 986 611844 _ HYPERLINK "" _cabaquiros@mundofree.com_ A Pousa A Pousa 25, Cunchada 986614128 986 614128  

Colin Davies said...


The fertile valley of the Miño and its magnificent environment have permitted human settlements since time immemorial. The bronze helmet of Caldelas [today in the Diocesan Museum] is the best testament to these.

The castro culture [8th century BC to 1st century AD] is represented in the peak of Mount Aloia, by the Cabeza de Francos [in Pazos de Reis], by A Guía [ìn Randufe] or in the very location of today's Tui.

The arrival in 137BC of Decimus Junius Brutus and his troops marked the beginning of the Romanisation of this region. Classical sources [Pliny, Ptolemy, Silo Italico, etc.] document the existence of Castellum Tyde and the mythical founding of the city by the Greek hero, Diomedes. Numerous traces of the Roman period have been unearthed, especially in the Santa Eufemia-San Bartolomé area, as well as in Tui itself.

Towards the end of the imperial era, Tui continued to be an important military, administrative and religious centre, whose Episcopal See is documented from the 5th century. With the arrival of the Swabians in the 4th century Tui, as Rekiamundo, became both the capital of the kingdom and a mint for the local currency.

The Visigoth king, Witiza, sited his court and palace in Tui, in Monterreal [Pazos de Reis].
Tui then endured both Arab raids and Norman attacks until, in 1071, the Galician king, D. García, and Doña Urraca restored it as their court. Almost a century later, Ferdinand II moved the city to its current location and constructed its walls.

In the Middle Ages, Tui was an important centre of commerce. It was a thriving river port, blessed with two distinct gifts, a Jewish community with its 2 synagogues and its position as a port of call for pilgrims on the road to Santiago. In today's old quarter - which covers about 10 hectares - there are numerous buildings from this era, especially from the 15th century with characteristic canopial arches. There are also many more modern buildings emblazoned with family crests.

1640. coinciding with the war with Portugal, the walls were extended and modified to take account of new defensive systems.

Until 1833, Tui was one of the six capitals of the Kingdom of Galicia and the Juntas of the Kingdome met there in 1664.

In the early 19th century, Tui was the scene of battles against the invading French forces.

The city has maintained its cultural heritage and its prime position as a meeting point with its Portuguese neighbours, especially since the building of the first bridge across the Miño in 1886.

Colin Davies said...


The Cathedral of Santa Maria

This is the best example of the city's architectural richness. Construction began in the 12th century and consecration was by Archbishop Esteban Egea in 1225. Its floor, northern entrance and the magnificent iconography of its capitals are in the Romanesque style, whereas its Gothic features are its main _ HYPERLINK "" _facade_ [the first work in this style in the Iberian Peninsula] and its typanum. The lower part of the latter depicts the birth of Christ, whilst the upper part portrays the Adoration of the Magi, complemented by a vision of a celestial Jerusalem.

Outstanding internal features include the retablo of The Expectation and the reliquary altar of the Chapel of Relics, both dating from the 18th century. In the large chapel is the the choir, constructed in 1699 by Castro Canseco. In the old chapel of Santa Catalina you will find the museum of the cathedral's treasures, amongst which stand out a 15th century coconut chalice, a carving of the Virgin [known as La Patrona and gifted in the 14th century] and a fragment of the original Great Retablo in limestone of 1520.

The cloister - the only original in all Galician cathedrals - is a superb Gothic masterpiece. It gives marvellous vies of the countryside from the tower of Soutomaior and the early Romanesque Sala Capitular of the 12th century

The Church of _ HYPERLINK "" _San Francisco_

This originally formed part of the the Franciscan convent of San Antonio. Built between 1682 and 1728, it has an outstanding baroque retablo from the first half of the 18th century

The Church of San Bartolomé de Rebordáns

Built over Roman and Swavian remains, this church dates from the 11th century and was built as a basilica, highlighting its historical capitals of rude primitivism. In the main chapel are preserved some magnificent  16th century murals. Its old monastery was the Episcopal seat in the early Middle Ages.

The Convent of Santo Domingo

The convent's _ HYPERLINK "" _church_, built in the Gothic style characteristic of the Dominican order, is blessed with two magnificent baroque retablos. The larger one is the work of Antonio de Villar, of nearby Redondela, and dates from the 18th century and is outstandingly magnificent. The crucifix on the retablo of the Virgen del Rosario features a curious representation of the battle of Lepanto on its upper half. This church and convent - of which little remain - was the burial place of the local nobility from Tui, Soutomaior, Correas, Ozores, etc.

Colin Davies said...

The Chapel of San Telmo

The only _ HYPERLINK "" _example _of Portuguese Baroque in Galicia, built over the remains of the house where this Dominican saint died in the 13th century. The chapel was begun in 1769 but not completed until 1803. Outstanding features are its circular floor, its .......... cupola and its frescoes dating from the early 19th century.
The Convento de Clarisas

This was built between the 17th and 18th centuries on the remains of the old Episcopal palaces of Oliveira. The church, in the classical style, is integrated with the _ HYPERLINK "" _convent buildings_, which are outstanding in their size and solidity.

The Ancient Walls

The city retains parts of the two walls built for its defence. One is from the medieval period and was built in the 12th and 13th centuries. It forms a large, irregular trapezium, featuring several defensive towers. Of its original entrances, we still have the Porta da Pia, where you can still see its gate, the base of the tower and various pieces of the wall. During the wars with Portugal of the 17th and 18th centuries, a larger defensive wall was built and the main remains of this can be seen near the Paseo Fluvial, down by the river.


These maps are issued by the Instituto Geográfico Nacional and are the best you can get. They really are essential if you plan to move off the main roads. Most are quite recent but one or two have not been updated since 1976. They cost 3-3.50 euros each and can be obtained from stationery stores.
IGN 261 I: As Neves, east of Tui
IGN 261 II: Arbo, even further east of Tui and further up the Miño
GN 262 III: Salvaterra - 95% white space so don't buy it unless you really feel you must to complete the set.
IGN 261 III: Cristelos - Covers the area west of Tui and north of Tomiño and O Rosal into the mountains, towards Gondomar
IGN 261 IV: Tui - Covers the city and its environs, west and east.
IGN 299  I:  Tomiño - Covers Tomiño and O Rosal
IGN 299  III: Salcidos - West of O Rosal towards La Guardia but mostly Portugal
IGN 298 IV: A Guarda, a bit of north Portugal and an awful lot of the Atlantic
IGN 298 II: Marzán - North of A Guarda and west of O Rosal, towards Oia and Bayona. Again, mostly the Atlantic

Colin Davies said...


Tui-Pontevedra 49km
Tui-Vigo 29km
Tui-Bayona 21km
Tui-La Guardia 25km


Angula Eel
Cabuzedos Big heads made from papier mache
Casa Rural Guest house in the country
Castro Celtic fortified settlement
Cruceiro Stone crucifix, usually at a crossroads
Gigantes Giants made from papier mache
Rapa Shearing
Ria Estuary
Rio River
Tegra Tecla
Tecla Tegra
Langustino Crayfish
Meixón Eel
Mirador Lookout point
Monte Mountain
Trega Tecla, Tegra

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