The council and surrounds of Navia belong to an area called “The Historical Park of the Navia River”. This refers to an area of different councils with a common historical past stemming from the ancient inhabitants of Asturias. The west of Asturias is full of legends, mystery, magic and myth. This is largely because their location between the sea and the mountains of Galicia and Leon and their welcoming character as a land of travellers, farmers, fisherman, shepherds, sailors and craftsmen.
The whole area is like a living museum with exhibits of mountains, beaches, valleys, rivers, towns and forests where you can find history in every step through the remnants of the Celtic, Roman and Christian cultures.
If we had to define this area in few words then it would be inspirational, relaxing, spiritual and mystical.
Other common denominators to all these areas are the mix of Galician and Asturias architecture, with stone structures and slate roofs. The traditional Asturian stores called “horreos” or “paneras” live side by side with Galician Style Barns. You will find these constructions right next to the houses and were designed protect cured meats and the vegetables from animals and insects.
During the middle Ages the nobility and clergy governed the land and left testimonies of their wealth in the form of Palaces, Large Stately Houses, chapels and sanctuaries. You will find a lot of examples of this throughout the enchanting small coastal and inland country villages.
The town of Navia is situated at the Navia estuary. It is a busy and lively service town with a nice port that offers a resting point for the “Route of Santiago” Pilgrims. The town has some excellent examples of medieval architecture such as the old town wall and an old medieval path which can still be seen. Look out for the large 17th century Estates like the “Coaña” and the “Marquees of Santa Cruz” and slightly more modern “Indiano” colonial architecture such as The Casino and the Arias Palace. Some of the best examples of Palaces in the area are Lienes in Armental, Anleo or Camposorio.
Close by to Navia you will find the enchanting fishing village of Puerto de Vega which operated as a whaling town. It is a very easy going town with good restaurants and a nice port. Some of the more culturally interesting buildings to be found there are the Church of Santa Marina, the Chapel of Atalaya and some good examples of Large Houses and Colonial Indiano architecture. Puerto de Vega is considered one of the starting points the Historical Park of the River Navia, through a museum called “Histories of the Sea” which is dedicated to the Life at the Sea.
In this area you will enjoy amazing long beaches surrounded by mountains, stunning landscapes and coastal Routes such as The Beach of Navia, The Beach of Frexulfe or the amazing Barayo Beach, a natural paradise beside a river and forest which was declared Partial Natural Biosphere Reserve.
You have also very nice walking routes to do like “The Coastal Route from Barayo to Navia” or a part of “The Route of Santiago” through the “Northern Route“.
The Gastronomy in Navia is mainly traditional Asturias cuisine with some Galician influences. Casseroles dominate the menu along with Asturian reared beef, fresh fish from the rivers and sea and cheeses and desserts from the area.
In August they celebrate the “Swimming Descent of the River Navia”, an impressive swimming competition and festival considered to be of National Interest.
More info: Navia Tourist Office
If you want more information contact Where is Asturias at firstname.lastname@example.org
Images supplied by Tomás Fano, Ayto de Navia, Parque Historico del Navia, and Turismo Asturias: Camilo Alonso.