The oldest working lighthouse in the world, the Tower of Hercules has become somewhat a symbol of the city. Built in Roman times, it is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Climb to the top to witness spectacular 360-degree coastal and city views and to learn all about it at the visitors’ center. There are also some lovely nature walks around the area.
Torre de Hércules, Avenida Navarra, A Coruña, Spain, +34 981 223 730
A Coruña is known as the ‘Glass City’ due to its unique architectural style of constructing galerías – enclosed glass balconies – onto the side of its buildings. Most date back to the 19th century and feature patterns, as well as colors and embellishments. The best galerías can be seen on the harbor front along Avenida Marina, but there are also many in the center of the city and along Avenida Motto too.
To get one of the best panoramic views of the city, head to the top of the San Pedro Hill via a huge spherical glass lift, allowing you to admire the views on the way up too. At the top you’ll find a variety of activities, including the Restaurante Mirador San Pedro, which has various spaces such as a laid-back café, a fine dining restaurant, a wine cellar and a cigar lounge. There is also a playground and outdoor picnic and barbecue area, and an interpretation center, where you can learn all about the history of the area.
Mirador de San Pedro Monte de San Pedro 13, A Coruña, Spain, +34 981 100 823
Estrella Galicia is one of Spain’s best-loved beers and its home is here in A Coruña. Founded in 1906 by Jose Mª Rivera, it’s possible to visit the original location of the first Estrella Galicia brewery in the neighborhood of Cuatro Caminos. The site is now the brewery-restaurant Estrella de Galicia, and you can enjoy food and fresh, unpasteurized beer straight out of the brewery.
A Coruña’s Museum of Science and Technology is one of the most important museums of its kind in the country. Located in a fascinating, glass cube-like building called the Prisma de Cristal, it displays more than 15,000 objects including scientific instruments, industrial tools, transport vehicles and technological devices. Exhibits include the front of a Boeing 747 plane and the first computer used in Spain.
The residents of A Coruña enjoy access to a long 1.4 kilometer crescent of sand, hugging the bay. Known as Praia do Orzán at its east end and Praia de Riazor at its west, it’s very popular, especially in summer. The beach also has some good waves for surfing at other times of the year.