The land of incredible food and wine
Galicia is beautiful region in north-western Spain and boasts landscapes such as green valleys and amazing beaches. The region is known as the lad of spas and hot springs. The capital of Galicia is Santiago de Compostela and it is the final destination on the Way of Saint James and has a huge religious importance. Along the coastline of the region, amazing cliffs like A Costa da Morte stand tall. Several cities and villages, both on the sea and inland, such as Santiago de Compostela, A Coruña, Ferrol, Lugo, Orense and Pontevedra are well worth the visit with amazing traditions to explore and delicious cuisine to taste. Typical produce and food in Galicia include shellfish, veal, octopus with potatoes, gammon with turnip greens or the almond tart known as “tarta de Santiago”. The famous wines, Ribeiro and Albariño are produced in this region and paired well the typical food here.
Top 3 Food and Drinks
The Regional Bites Of Galicia
Ever experienced a bite of boiled octopus melting deliciously in your mouth, alerting the farthest end of your taste buds? Or a luscious dessert challenging your palate? If you want to taste some of the best typical Galician dishes, try these three given below.
Pulpo a la Gallega
A dish that perfectly describes Spain. Pulpo a la Gallega is the signature cuisine of the Galicia region. Made with simple ingredients, such as octopus, olive oil, paprika, and salt, Pulpo a la Gallega is one of the tastiest recipe, available in all restaurants where the seafood is prepared. In some menus, you will find a different name for this dish – Pulpo a Feira. This iconic cuisine is served on a thick wooden plate where boiled octopus is topped with thin slices of potatoes with some salt and paprika on it. Typically, you can have it with cocktail sticks.
Caldo Gallego – White Bean Soup
In Galicia, hot and delicious soups reign supreme, and one of the most famous ones is Caldo Gallega. It is aa hearty Galician stew made up of cabbage, potatoes, white beans, and beef. To enhance its taste, chefs of the region add various sausages and chorizo, keeping the original recipe of the traditional pottage alive. The dish is prepared in every house of Galicia during wet and chilly winters to stay warm. When done, it is served in soup bowls, paired with red wine and crusty banquette bread.
Tarta de Santiago – A Spanish Almond Cake
One of the traditional Galician desserts, Tarta de Santiago, has a long history dates back to the times of medieval pilgrimage. Even today, the tart of the cake features St. James’ cross on the top. This highly-recommended dessert is kind of a sponge cake topped with powdered sugar. It is an easy-to-make cake, but you can buy it from any bakery while touring Galicia. Made with simple ingredients such as ground almonds, eggs, sugar, lemon, cinnamon, etc., Tarta de Santiago defines the traditions of Spain.
Top 3 Places
Saint Jacques de Compostelle – Journey of Mind & Soul
Discover the charms of the capital of Galicia, Saint Jacques de Compostelle, and figure out why this place must be included in your journey. The site is a perfect blend of adventure and spirituality, where thousands of pilgrims pay a visit – some by foot and others by bicycle. Also, have a wonderful gastronomy tour of this region where hundreds of restaurants and taverns are waiting for you to taste their traditional and innovative cuisines, seafood in particular. For hiking, fishing, and bike riding, St. Jacques provides an ideal atmosphere. So adventure-lovers!! This place is truly for you.
Lugo – Discover the Roman Past
Pay a visit to Lugo and explore the history of Roman civilization through the Roman Baths, the Roman Wall, and the Roman Bridge. The wall is a part of the World Heritage Site and is a must-visit to learn about Roman culture and lifestyle. For foodies, Lugo is a perfect place to spend a holiday as it offers many traditional cuisines, such as Octopus á Feira, Carne ao Caldeiro, and luscious desserts of the region. And do not forget to visit Lugo Spa, a place renowned for thermal springs, and discover the therapeutic properties of the water. While going north, you can visit charming seaside towns like Viveiro and Foz, where you witness the real beauty of the lush countryside.
A Coruña – Glass City of Galicia
Located by the side of the Atlantic Ocean, A Coruña is a medieval city of Galicia that embraces long historical connections with fishing and commercial ports. During your stay in A Coruña, there are uncountable things one can do. For example, visiting the Tower of Hercules, medieval churches, Finisterrae Aquarium, Museum, etc. must be on your checklist. Apart from that, there are several dishes and snacks that tourists can’t afford to miss – the food that is a blend of traditions and innovation. Some of the cuisines you might want to savor are velvet crab, goose barnacle, and spider crab, together with monkfish, grilled sole, and many more.
Top 3 Wines
Galicia – Red Wines, The Untold Treasure
Tasting a fragrant white wine or sipping a glass of luscious red wine while looking at the craggy cliffs, paired with lip-smacking seafood, is a perfect vacation anyone could even imagine. Get in here and visit some of the best wineries in the world and indulge in unforgettable wine tasting.
Primarily, there are six Denominaciones de Origen Protegidas, also known as DOPs in Galicia. It includes DOP Monterrei, DOP Ribeira Sacra, DOP Rías Baixas, DOP Ribeiro, DOP Valdeorras and DOP Viños da Terra. At the beginning of the 19th century, the whole Galician wine industry had gone through economic crises until 1986 when the European Union arrived and shaped the wine industry again. Most of the vineyard-zones are located south of Galicia in the regions of Ourense and Pontevedra. Significant vine cultivation can be seen in Lugo, east of Galicia.
A renowned appellation region, DOP Rías Baixas, is the house Albariño grape, a variety widely used to make tasty white wines. Along with that, Torrontés, Treixadura, and especially Godello dominate the DOP wine-regions of Riberio and Monterrei. In 2016, the vines were cultivated on about 10,000 hectares in Galician wine-zones. Today, there are over 450 small and large wineries with around 16,400 registered vine-growers.
The wines of Galicia enjoy a variety of soil, ranging from Granite in Rías Baixas to slate in Valdeorras. Approximate 84,000 vineyard plots in Galicia are less than one hectare. Despite these conditions and less favourable climatic conditions, the region produces one of the top-notch wines in Germany.
The maritime climate in most parts of Galicia makes it an impeccable place for the cultivation of white varieties. One of the vital types is Albariño, a typical white variety, highly acidic, and aromatic. Besides, Godello, Treixadura, and Loureiro are widely grown throughout the DOPs of Galicia. It is noticeable that the weightage of white is more than reds, but that doesn’t mean reds are lesser than any other vine. The typical reds include Mencía and Caiño Tinto, fermented in tanks to produce sour, medium-bodied red wines.
Styles Of Wines
Galicia is a place best known for its premium wines, especially the fuller-bodied white wines. If you never had an opportunity to taste the luscious wines of Galicia, then now it’s your time! During your journey to one of the wineries of this beautiful region, you will understand the uniqueness of its incredible red and white wines.
To begin with, try out Louro do Bolo Godello, a delicious white wine made from Godello grape variety, paired wonderfully with seafood or local cheese. And if you want to challenge your taste buds with something crispy and more acidic, Pazos del Rey Pazo de Monterrey is your go-to option. Galician wines may not be very famous among people like Pinots and Cabernet Sauvignon, but once you taste them, there is no going back. You will fall for them unintentionally.
While still in Galicia, do not forget to surprise your taste buds with Losada La Bienquerida, a mouth-watering, medium-bodied red wine, made from Mencía grape. The wine is laced with breathtaking aromas, enhanced with few violet hues. Some other wines that you can try in Galicia are top-quality dessert and rose wines, produced from Autochthonousgrapes, aged in wooden oak barrels.
Nature – Top 3
Parque Nacional Marítimo – Largest National Park
This natural reserve is the largest national maritime park in Galicia with so much to discover. Here you can have the best beachside experience of your life. Visit the Rhodas beach, situated beautifully in the Cies Islands. Visitors won’t be able to cease themselves from falling in love with crystal clear water and golden sand. There are other islands other than Cies, which include Ons, Sálvora and Cortegada. Each island has something rare to offer, be it food, wine, beaches, or flora and fauna. One thing that is common on all islands of Parque National Park is pulpo á Illa, a perfect boiled octopus cuisine that will help you to get your strength back.
Costa da Vela – Resonance of History and Nature
Nestled between Rias de Vigo and Pontevedra, there exists a perfect example of the wonders of nature, a place one cannot afford to miss while in Galicia – Costa da Vela. Most of this region is dominated by seawater and pine groves with a spectacular view of the landscape. During your stay here, discover the Cabo Home Lighthouse, one of the highest spots in Galicia. Spare some time to spend on heavenly beaches of Negra and Barra, where you can enjoy sunbathing and snorkelling. Discover the ancient Castro and Celtic history by paying a well-guided visit to Monte do Facho.
Praia das Catedrais – Monument With Supernatural Dimension
Praia das Catedrais is a work of art, a natural monument that has shaped itself over the year in the presence of majestic sea and time. It is a must-included tourist spot on your trip. Get lost in the silence of the beach and wait for low tide to come and kiss your feet – you sure are sure going to feel like a paradise. Discover the domes and arches while having a memorable time with your loved ones in sand corridors. This place will give you a chance to get in touch with nature and its charms directly.