Thursday, December 11, 2008

galicia

As Ave noted, I failed to mention the name of my new fantasy destination in the previous post. It's Galicia in northwestern Spain. Have I been there? No. I only got as far west as Bilbao, which is a bit west of San Sebastian on the map above, but in the same province.

Galicia is part of "Green Spain," the northern strip of Spain that gets lots of rainfall. It's a lot like Ireland, but warmer. In fact, the people claim a Celtic heritage and say they have more in common with the people of Ireland and Cornwall than the Spaniards of the south. Though Spanish is widely spoken and is one of the official languages, the other is Gallego, described as a mix of Portuguese and Spanish. I've found that I can read it but can't understand it when spoken. From what I've read it seems that the Gallegos, though proud of their language and heritage, are not as interested in separating from the rest of Spain as their fellow northern provinces, Basque Country and Catalonia.

Santiago de Compostela is reportedly one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, a UNESCO site and all that. It was (and still is to a lesser extent) a pilgrimage site as it is supposedly the final resting place of St. James.

Why do I want to live there?

Incredible natural beauty. I think Basque Country is the most beautiful place I've ever been. I did prefer it to all I saw of France, Italy, Switzerland, and Ireland. People have told me that Galicia is even more beautiful.

Out-of-this-world food. Seafood. It's known for having the best food in Spain. And Spain has FOOD to die for.

Low cost of living. We could actually afford the rent on a house here with more than three bedrooms! The food is relatively inexpensive, too. I don't know yet about school tuition.

Castles. There are lots! And who doesn't want castles?

Proximity to Portugal. I loved our visit to Portugal. It was enchanting and the whole time we were there we talked about how much we'd like to bring the kids.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Start Packing!
ave

Meg said...

Sounds fabulous.

But if you are starting this early...do we get 2 places this year?

Norman & Noeme said...

Hi there, it was very interesting to read all those comments about Galicia, why not just cross the border into Portugal and be amazed how similar it is to Galicia and a lot cheaper, that is the reason why the Spanish cross the border in droves. Visit www.portugal-north.com to find out more
Regards Norman & Noeme

Maine Mom said...

If I were more adventurous, Galicia sounds like a nice and beautiful place to live. :-)

Mama Ava said...

Why do you do this? Now I'm re-reading Under the Tuscan Sun. The trouble is that I'm trying to envision me in that life sans children fighting, messing, and whinging about whatever their problems are at the moment!

hee hee Can you tell I need a break?!