O Castro Mountain offers one of the routes with the best views of the Vigo estuary, and in less than 2 hours. O Castro is the largest park in the city centre and, along with the Castrelos Park, its true lung; it’s one step away from the shopping, residential and business areas. By walking along the paths in O Castro you can enjoy this botanical park, its history and its incredible views.
The route begins at the top of the mountain, right in the centre of the fortress that crowns it; these 17th century walls are the best viewpoint of Vigo and the estuary. The walls host a garden dotted with sculptures like Camilo Nogueira’s monument in honour of Vigo or the tribute to medieval poet Martín Codax.
Walking down the trails that border the O Castro fort and towards the Old Town, we’ll reach a new viewpoint, presided by the Monument to the Rande Galleons: three anchors and several cannons recovered from the bottom of the estuary. They’re some of the remains of the Battle of Rande in 1702, which sank a large part of the Spanish fleet that arrived from America loaded with gold and silver. If its treasures were not found by Captain Nemo, as written by Jules Verne, perhaps they are still in the seabed.
From the monument to the Battle of Rande and through the diversity of plant species that inhabit the mountain, we can turn left until we find the archaeological remains of the first inhabitants of Vigo: the circular stone houses in a castreño (Celtic) village from II century BC that give the mountain it’s name.
If we go back where we came from and continue down from the monument to the Battle of Rande towards the Old Town, we’ll find the town hall tower. Right behind it, you’ll see the remains of the fortress of San Sebastián, the city’s other major defence construction along with the fort in O Castro.
Tips and recommendations:
At the top of the mountain there are several cafes where you can relax while enjoying the views; the ideal place for a drink before lunch.