Santo Adriano is part of the Camin Real de la Mesa (Royal Road). This route is Pre-Romanic in origin and up to 19th century, it was one of the busiest routes between Asturias and the central plains of Spain. You can still find the original Roman Pavements as the route winds its way through hills, meadows and along the River Nalon.
These are two spectacular councils for their surrounding mountains, landscapes, valleys and meadows. They are also part of the Valley of the Bear, a refuge of one of the last populations of Cantabrian Brown Bears in the country which are one of the three varieties of brown bear existing in Europe. As you travel through the area, you might get a chance to spot Paca & Tola, two orphan bears that have found a home there and you can sometimes see them when they come down from the mountain to eat.
In the area of Santo Adriano the main town is called Villanueva and here you can find the Church of San Roman and the medieval bridge over the River Trubia. The main monument is the Pre Romanic church of Santo Adriano de Tuñon.
One of the most popular walking Routes in the area is the Route of the Bear which is great for walking or cycling especially when accompanied by small kids. Bicycle and Segway hire is available at reasonable daily rates. The route starts in the town of Tuñón, Teverga and follows 25 km of a disused mining railway, restored for hikers and cyclist as it passes through Quiros, Santo Adriano, Proaza and Teverga collectively known as the “Valleys of the Bear”.
In Santo Adriano you can also find one of the most important Routes in Asturias “Las Xanas Route” or The Route of the Fairies, an amazing walk through a mountain gorge which has been declared Natural Monument.
The Gastronomy in the area is a classical Asturian fare, offering nice seasonal vegetables, stews, Asturian reared beef and nice fish from the Rivers. The area is also very popular for game and roast meats, picadillo (asturian spiced minced meat) or callos (tripe). Meals are normally served with the wonderful local Escanda Bread (Spelt Bread).The area is also famous for the Afuega el Pitu cheese (which translates as “Choke the chicken” cheese), a very popular cheese in Asturias.
If you want to know more about the Camin Real de la Mesa you can read the article written by Paul Richardson for the english newspaper The Guardian: Secrets of Spain on a road less travelled.
If you want more information contact Where is Asturias at firstname.lastname@example.org
Images supplied by Tomás Fano.