There are plenty of things that tell you you’re in Galicia: the green landscapes, the “singing” accent of the Galician language, the cheap (but amazing) seafood… Inner Galicia also has these, and Lalín, although an under-the-radar destination even for Galician inhabitants, is a great proof for it.
So, in order to help you find the authentic Galicia when you pay a visit, we’ve chosen 5 sites near Lalín you shouldn’t miss.
Finding ‘authentic Galicia’: 5 sites near Lalín not to miss
Manor houses: Pazo de Liñares
Galician manor houses or pazos, are different from other Spanish castles by their size (some call the small palaces) but the true difference isn’t there: you can only call it Pazo when it has a chapel, a dovecote (a house for pigeons) and a cypress tree.
All these three elements combined live only 15 minutes away from downtown Lalín at Pazo de Liñares, a XVII Century Baroque building where writer Emilia Pardo Bazán, aviator Lóriga and many other writers, politicians and socialites from the XIX and early XX Centuries lived. The building is now home to Museum of Puppets (great visit) and to the team of researchers that are investigating the Iron Age fortified villages that surround Lalín.
Galician Forests: Fraga de Catasós
While you can visit some great nature spots without leaving Lalín, if you are looking for the green landscapes that you dream of when you plan your trip to Galicia, you better step out of the village towards nearby Catasós.
Only 5 minutes away by car, Catasós has one of those magical forests called fragas. Fragas are, to say it shortly, forests where deciduous (non perennial leaf) trees, many of which are carballos – a local species of Oaks-, live together with ferns, bays, wild fruit trees and many birds and other species.
There aren’t many fragas any more, but some, like the one at Fraga de Catasós are protected for the value of the living creatures that live there. It’s not a big space, but these tall oaks and chestnut trees provide with a magical atmosphere. Don’t forget to do the hiking route there, it’s only 2km long.
Pilgrimage churches and monasteries
Galicia has a deep connection with religion: tradition intertwines the elements of the Catholic religion with those of the first inhabitants and have created some of the craziest festivals you will find in the world. One of them is right here in Lalín and is called O Corpiño.
The festivity, devoted to St. Mary, brings by the end of June thousands of devotees looking for a cure for mental health illnesses and bewitchments of all kinds. The former priest here was even allowed to practice exorcism on site (he was one of the only priests in all Spain allowed) But now most people go there looking for more “standard” needs.
It’s not the only religious site in Lalín: you can visit the small church of San Martiño de Lalín de Arriba. An old Monastery church that dates back to the X Century. There is no Monastery there since the XIII Century, but the Romanic church is worth a visit.
Also, not far from here is the Carboeiro Monastery, another beautiful place that you might have seen on Enrique Iglesia’s De Noche y de Día (no parties are held there, in case you were thinking so.).
Traditional architecture: Hórreos
Remember the hórreos (traditional granaries) in Combarro? They were a great visit because they were on a unique place: by the sea. Here in Lalín, hórreos are where they should: by the crop fields, waiting to be filled up with the goods of the season. They are easy to spot, just look for the house-like shape and the cross on the top.
They are not the only stone architecture you will see here: the villages like Zobra at Serra do Candán still keep many houses with the traditional stone and slate walls.
Fortified apiaries: Albariza de Zobra
The region of Serra do Candán is also a great source for locally produced honey, so you will find here something that is hard to spot at the coast but is also a traditional structure from Galicia: albarizas!
Albarizas (also found as alvarizas) are fortified apiaries. A walled structure where beehives would stay protected from bears and other threats. They are hard to spot and you will find a well-kept one right outside of the little village of Zobra.
Some extra info
Lalín village is easily explored on foot but you will need a car to make the most of your visit here (or a good pair of hiking boots).
There are several private parkings available around town and many public parking areas.
How to get there
By train: Renfe operates direct trains from Ourense and Santiago de Compostela but timetables are a bit limited (and sometimes confusing). You can travel by Bus from Vigo, Santiago, Ourense etc. but car is still the easiest route.
By plane: all three airports in Galicia are at 1 hour – 1 hour and a half distance. Check Vigo (VGO) Santiago de Compostela (SCQ) and A Coruña (LCG).
The Way: two routes cross by Lalín, the Winter Way (Camino de Invierno) and the Silver Way (Vía de la Plata)