This 16th century fort was built to protect Baiona from its enemies and pirates. It was the perfect place to built within its walls the Parador de Baiona, a luxury 4 star hotel. Sitting on this stone walled peninsula you get marvelous views of the sea and the village.
Arriving in Baiona as I looked out over the harbor my eyes were drawn to this ship that looked like something out of one of my grade school history books. There in all it's glory was an exact replica of the famous ship, La Pinta which was part of the fleet of Christopher Columbus. I was really surprised at it's extremely small size and wondered how it actually made it across the Atlantic. On board the ship is a Maritime Museum that depictes the daily life of it's passengers as it crossed the ocean to the New World.
They are open from June 15 - September 15 from 10 AM - 8 PM daily.
There is a price of .80 Euros to board the ship.
This statue was designed by Antonio Palacios and was started in 1910 but was not completed till 1930. It stands about 50 feet tall and towers some 300 feet above the sea. There is a spiral staircase that takes you to one of its arms where you can get a spectacular view of the ocean. Inside the sculpture is a small box which contains gold, silver, and bronze coins and documents telling about the Virgen.
The bridge across the river Miñor establishes the boundary between the councils of Bayona and Nigrán.
This beautiful medieval-style bridge presents ten semicircular arches, eight of which (36 metres long) belong to Bayona.
Tradition says that pregnant women whose unborn children had been repeatedly miscarried used to go to the bridge to exorcise their unfavourable fate. The exorcism had to be performed at midnight: the woman's belly was washed with water from the river and the first person to cross the river after the rite was chosen as godparent, a honour which could not be refused.
Over a group of rocks in the highest area of the village can be found this Cross that was built in the 15th century.
Inside the shelter there is a Gothic cross with the image of Jesus Christ at whose feet the Holy Virgin Mary appears next to some other consecrated figures.
This Church honors a martyr daughter of Bayona that was the first woman in the World to die in the cross, St. Liberata.
It's construction started in 1695, thanks to public donation.
The main façade has two towers and between them, escorted by the ancient coats of arms of Bayona and the Kingdom of Galicia, lies the crucified saint.
The Old Town was awarded Historically and Artistically Interesting Area by the Galician Heritage Board in 1993, the 5th centenary of the Arrival.
Although the Old Town includes part of O Burgo and Sabarís, its core is in the town centre. It's composed by narrow streets of cobbled stone, short stone or granite buildings and arcades, churches and fountains.
This panel made in painted tiles (azulejo) represents the routes taken by Pinzón and Columbus, with the caravels Pinta and Niña, when they returned after the discovery of the New World
The seafront in Bayona is probably the most attractive thing in the village.
The boulevard it's wide and artistic and a perfect place to stop and contemplate the bay. The opposite side is a long shopping avenue where we can find restaurants, cafes and hotels.
The boulevard has more than 2Km and it goes to the near village of A Ramalhosa.
A Palma Park is the biggest urban park in Bayona, spread out on an area of over 10,000 square meters.
The Park is located between the Monte Real Fortress walls and the main road. The park includes gardens, stone benches, a playground, a pond, paved walks, a bandstand and a wide sports area. Its closeness to the water makes it a nice place to relax and walk.
The Fortress can be visited all through the year (admission is 1€). Amazing over the ria and the Cíes islands can be admired from the walls.
The visit to the fortress, since it's large area, can take up to 1h30m
Located in the west part of the fortress this tower stands over the bay and is probably the oldest tower. Destroyed by Almanzor in 997 it was rebuilt a few years later.
It was used to serve as lighthouse for vessels. It shows three coats of arms (the Austrias's, the Sotomaior's and the one of Bayona).
The tower has an history of legends of love and prisoners but probably it was named after the portuguese prince Afonso Henriques (later first King of Portugal) was imprisoned inside the tower.
The Tower of the Tenaille (Torre de la Tenaza) rises to the East as a strategic defensive point and its duty was to defend the port of Bayona with artillery. During all it's history it also was used as prison and warehouse.
This tower welcomes the visitors that approach by land and watches the ones that sail to the sea from the Bayona's Bay. Built in 1510, inside this tower there was a hidden warning bell which served as an alarm in case of enemy attacks.
The Castle is located in the Monte Real or Monte Boi peninsula. It has been known for more than 2000 years as a fortified space. Before Christus, it was a settlement for celts, phoenicians and romans.
The ancient fortress dates from the 2nd century B.C. Several major changes were made since then, by orders of Alfonso IX, King of León (12th-13th centuries) and Felipe IV, sponsor of important changes on the fortified walls.
The actual Castle mixes ancient millitary elements with modern buildings, result of the construction of the National Parador de Turismo