Visit Coruna, Jewel of Spains North West Coast

By: Stephen Stewart

Northern Spain and Galicia particularly has long been an undiscovered jewel in the whole of the Spanish tourism industry and within that undiscovered jewel in particular we are going to take a look at Coruna.

Overall of all of the autonomous regions of Spain possibly Galicia is the most remote and this makes Coruna even more of an undiscovered treasure.

Traditionally, Galicia was seen as a poor agricultural region, whose economy did not lend itself to modernisation and yet as far as tourism is concerned it is this constant contact with the past that gives the region its appeal and charm.

The Galicians, whose origins are Celtic, are fiercely proud of their culture and language; it is what makes them unique (they feel) within modern day Spain.

It absorbed little in the way of outside influence being fiercely resistant to all forms of outside intervention (and we mean all forms of outside intervention), was never conquered by the Moors, and in the Middle Ages fell under the control of the kingdom of Asturias.

Thankfully slowly throughout the 20th century Galicia has begun to develop a way in which to manage the traditional lifestyles with a modern community to ensure that none of its rich history is lost and this is now starting to show very real and tangible benefits as far as the local tourism economy is concerned.

Corona is the oldest town in Galicia. It is even mentioned in Irish Celtic folklore as the destination of the Celtic hero Breogan who apparently travelled to the Iberian Peninsula, landed and where he landed built a tower.

There is a large tower outside Coruna, but this particular town is a famous lighthouse and is called the Torres de Hercules and dates back from Roman times. The tower is the world's oldest working lighthouse and has been the subject of a recent renovation project which has restored the lighthouse to almost its original splendour. The tower was originally built during the period of the Roman Emperor Trajan but legend attributes the construction to Hercules which as has been proven is not quite true but is a splendid tale nonetheless.

Coruna is also the birthplace to a local heroine of Galician folklore (in this case a story more substantiated) Maria Pitt who it is alleged became a heroine overnight when she was the focal point and leader of the Galician Resistance to the English sailor (and in this case probably privateer) Sir Francis Drake when he raided Coruna in 1589.

Coruna has been one of the most important ports within the whole country of Spain for centuries and is one of the centres for the Spanish fishing fleet that travels as far away as fishing grounds off the coasts of Iceland and Canada.
Fishing is immensely important to the Spanish who actually probably consume more seafood than any other European country with the exception of Portugal.

The Galician fishing fleet which has been mentioned is centred in Coruna and Vigo supplies near the half of the fish and shellfish caught and consumed in Spain. The industry employs as a nation over 61,000 fishermen and over 16,000 boats with as has been said more than 50 percent of the fleet based in Galicia so you can see that Fishing is immensely important to the local economy.

There is more to Coruna, in fact a whole lot more than just fishing and the delights of Coruna are in fact many and varied.

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