The Galician city of Vigo is located in the northwest of Spain, approximately 90km (56 miles) south of Santiago de Compostela and just 35km (22 miles) from the border with Portugal. A pretty coastal spot, it offers a wealth of attractions for visitors to see and do – here are some of the best.
MARCO de Vigo is the city’s contemporary art museum, which was founded in 2002. Housed in the former city prison, the museum has no permanent collection, but instead acts as an exhibition and cultural space for showcasing modern art. Works shown here include art by both local seasoned and up-and-coming artists, and curators.
Monte O Castro is a hill and community park, rising up from the centre of the city. This is the place for history buffs and sports fans, as well as people who simply enjoy admiring city views. On the lower slopes you’ll find the archeological site of Yacimiento de O Castro, dating back to between the 3rd and 1st centuries BC, while on the upper slopes are playgrounds and skate parks. At the top sits the O Castro Castle, a grand fortress offering spectacular views of the city.
Vigo’s largest city beach Praia de Samil makes for a perfect summer day’s out. Measuring half a mile long and 5o feet wide, there’s plenty of sandy space for everyone. Fun for the whole family, the beach also offers three saltwater pools, restaurants, cafés, playgrounds, skate parks and basketball courts.
Sitting on the Plaza Compostela de Vigo, you’ll find Estrella Galicia Vigo, a modern beer hall and brewery, serving Galicia’s much-loved beer – Estrella Galicia. Contemporary and bright, it’s filled with old beer memorabilia and large old brewing vats. The beer hall is also home to excellent restaurant, serving Galician classics.
A must-visit for seafood lovers, Rúa Pescadería sits within the Casco Viejo (Old Town), next to the port. A whole street packed with fish and seafood restaurants, come here to sample the city’s best oysters, accompanied by a glass of albariño wine.
Learn all about the sea at the Museo do Mar de Galicia
Galicia and Vigo have always had a strong relationship with the sea, which can be seen in everything from its culture to its food and landscape. One of the best places to learn about that relationship is at Vigo’s Museum of the Sea, which looks at the historical links between Galicians and the sea, through documents, interactive screens, videos and objects such as old fishing equipment.
Located in one of the most beautiful buildings in Vigo, the municipal museum of the city is housed in a 17th-century manor house, surrounded by sculpted gardens, ponds and fountains. The exhibits include archeological remains found in the city, as well as a collection of Galician artwork.
The city’s Ethnographic Museum is located in a 20th-century noble house, and showcases over 2,500 pieces in its collection. Dedicated to the study of Galician peoples and cultures, it looks at everything from the Rye culture and symbolism in crafts, to folklore, medicine and faith.
The Afundación Social Centre is housed in the beautifully restored Casa Bárcena and is the city’s largest exhibition centre. Stroll around its lovely indoor garden, browse its art collection on a guided tour or take the kids to visit Naturnova – an environmental education centre, where they can learn about the galaxy, the solar system, Earth, and the environment.