Parador Santo Estevo
The Parador of Santo Estevo is located in the province of Galicia not far north of the Portuguese border, in Nogueira de Ramuín (Ourense).The reconstruction on this 6th century monastery was only recently completed – making Parador Santo Estevo one of the ‘newest’ in the Parador chain. This monastery is one of Galicia’s oldest – having been founded in the 6th century! There is a large and grand colonnaded cloister that surrounds tranquil gardens.
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The Parador is exceedingly lovely and is situated at the confluence of the Miño and Sil rivers in an area of rare natural beauty.
Parador Santo Estevo is architecturally fascinating. The original construction is Romanesque, but later additions created a congruous mixture of Romanesque, Baroque, and Renaissance styles. In fact it has three cloisters – one in each style: ‘De la portería’, ‘De la Cocina’, and ‘De los Obispos’. The Parador has a notable Baroque facade and a monumental staircase.
Interesting nearby excursions from Parador Santo Estevo:
– The attraction here is the surrounding countryside. Drive out and explore.
– You could ask at the Parador for map guides for the Route of the Vantage Points: Take in the landscapes around the banks of the Sil and Miño Rivers on this route. There are several pretty “gargantas” (waterfalls) in the area.
– Another choice is the Romanesque Route: Visit churches and monasteries from the late 12th and 13th centuries on this route.
– Then head back to one of the most recent additions to the Parador chain and just relax and enjoy the exquisite peace and quiet.
Interesting day trips from the Santo Estevo Parador include:
– Ourense – Has an intriguing old quarter worth a visit (don’t be put off by the somewhat ugly outskirts of the city). It is completely enclosed by Roman-built walls. Climb up – and you can walk around the entire city up there.
– Braganca – This town just across the Portuguese border has a medieval feel in the old part and a walled citadel that is well worth the trip. As well you can venture into the Parque National De Montesinho – one of the least changed areas of small traditional villages in Iberia.
– The Atlantic coast and Bayona – this is a very beautiful area well worth a visit – you might want to stay in the very special Parador de Bayona since you’ve driven this far.
Staying in the Parador at Santo Estevo is most attractive to those seeking a peaceful haven in the midst of incredible natural surroundings. This isn’t to say your stay can’t be an active one – the hiking possibilities are some of the best anywhere! Bring a good book and a good air of hiking shoes – you’ll have a very memorable experience!
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(All Santo Estevo Parador information provided by SpainParador.com)