Oviedo

Overview

Introduction

Located in the northern province of Asturias, 230 mi/370 km northwest of Madrid, Oviedo, Spain, has several historic buildings, including the outstanding Gothic cathedral and the attached Camara Santa, an earlier church built in 802.

Also worth visiting are Oviedo's Asturian churches, which also date from the 800s. Among them are Santa Maria del Naranco and San Miguel de Lillo, both on the Monte del Naranco overlooking the city. The city also has an archaeological museum with a good collection of ancient sculptures. To the east and west stretches Spain's Costa Verde, a rocky coast punctuated with spectacular coves and beaches backed by green countryside, though less blessed with sunshine than the south.

The Picos de Europa, a mountain range 44 mi/70 km east of Oviedo, is a great place for hiking. The 15-mi-/24-km-long Cares Gorge Trail passes through a towering limestone gorge on a path hewn out of rock. On this and many other trails, you can see mountain goats, golden eagles and sometimes Pyrenean desmans (moles), chamois and wild boar.

Accommodations of some sort can be found in most area villages. In summer, take a hat, good walking shoes and sunglasses, as it's hot and the sun is bright.

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