Thursday, June 30, 2011


The sea inside

Since I am short on time and have little to write about concerning events in Galicia, I will continue with the theme from my last blog, namely setting a question.

So, to start off with, here are the answers to my questions posed in the last blog:

Movie: The sea inside (Mar adentro)

Town: Boiro

This blog's question

This time my question is one of a pictorial nature and it comes thanks to Angela who came across a photo that she wanted me to try and identify.

You can see the photo to the right and the question is: what is it and where is it?

It took me a lot of figuring out and anyone who can get the answer correct deserves a pat on the back. In truth the only reason that I could identify the site was because I had once passed it and happened upon a similar photo that I had taken.

If you want some clues, here they are.

It is in Southern Galicia.

It is in an area of tourist and historical interest.

Good luck.

Monday, June 27, 2011


Galicia challenge

Following on from the google a day puzzle of last week that gave me so many hits on topics like “Galicia cathedral”, “Santiago cathedral” and the like, I though that I would introduce my own regular blog challenge concerning a place, fact or question about Galicia. On each occasion I will post the answer in the next blog, so there is no need to email me for the answer. I will try to cover a diverse range of topics, so there will be no common theme beyond Galicia itself.

To start off - Since films about Galicia, e.g. the Martin Sheen one about travelling on the Camino, get made from time to time, I thought that I would start with a movie challenge.


The question is a double one, namely what it the name of the film and in which Galician town was it based.


It was about a paraplegic, his legal quest for voluntary euthanasia and it stared an actor called Javier Bardem. It is a very good film and well worth the watch. There is an English sub-titled version doing the rounds and in the UK it occasionally gets aired on Film 4.

Finding the name of the film should not be too taxing, however finding out where the main character (in this true story) lived is slightly more challenging.

The answer will be in may next post.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Google-a-day puzzle - 23 June 2011

As a result of the “Google-a-day” puzzle (for today), my Galicia Guide website has had an all time record number of people having hits on the Santiago cathedral pages - all coming from their searches for “Cathedral Galicia” or similar terms.

Top marks to the person setting this clever question/riddle as it combines general interest, religion, geography and a past and present historical event in the form of a pilgrimage. It also sets the focus on a part of Spain normally omitted from everything mainstream.

Here is the google page in question -

Hopefully it will ignite the interest of some website visitors to explore Galicia in greater detail and maybe also to take a look at the Martin Sheen movie about the Camino.

The answer to the riddle is of course St. James (or for that matter any modern day or past day pilgrim) and the route referred to is the Camino de Santiago.

Incidentally, a week ago a British TV property show also looked at buying a home in Galicia, so perhaps there is a bit of northern Spanish promotion going on at the moment.

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Thursday, June 16, 2011


My 400th post to this blog

Interestingly, I had my first really offensive blog comment for some time at the beginning of this week. Thanks to the sender as it did make me laugh.

Anyone who has a blog about any country or region will have received these from time to time and in this case it came from someone claiming to be a Galician nationalist. I will not offend (or more likely bore) anyone with the comments and abuses that were made, however I must complement the sender on their excellent written English and, in particular, their ability to use expletives in the perfect context. As will always be the case, I do not allow these comments to be published, so anyone writing them does so for their own amusement rather than to gain any kind of readership on my blog.

Fortunately such comments do not reflect Galicia or the typical Galician who is normally friendly, polite and in my experience welcoming of foreigners.

Talking to a Galician friend yesterday, I asked about the season for pimientos de Padron. I had always been under the impression that they became available in late May and that the final pickings were in September. Apparently, with the advent of poly tunnels, the season has now been extended in both directions and you can get them from April through to October. That’s seven months out of the year. I only wish that they were as readily and cheaply available here in the UK where the climate is equally ideal for them. In previous years my wife’s father has grown them in the UK, but this year, knowing that he would be in Galicia when they would need harvesting, he has decided not to bother!

Finally, I see that the movie website (see page: gives Martin Sheen’s “The Way” 7.1 out of 10 based on 27 critics reviews. This would seem to be a fairly positive endorsement.

If you are taking a cruise covering the Med and Northern Europe you may have a port of call in one of the Galician ports. To find out more visit this link

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


A few thoughts

I decided to check out some of the links on this blog the other day, only to discover that a few of them were dead and some others had not been posted on for some time. I guess this is a result of either recession cutbacks or bloggers losing interest in posting.

I have now tidied the links up and corrected one link that was incorrect.

In any event it did result in me updating myself with the latest events taking place at and this is a read that I would recommend to anyone considering buying and renovating a property in northern Spain.

Leading on from this - I have occasionally had emails regarding what to do when buying a house in Spain, particularly with reference to ensuring that everything is conveyed correctly. The Spanish system is of course very different to the UK and USA and it can result in numerous problems if good legal advice is not taken.

Talking to someone the other day (who has gone through this process), their recommendation was not to use a Spanish solicitor (even an English speaking one), but rather to use a UK based practice.

They assured me that this did not incur any additional cost and that further, the liability of the solicitor was secured under UK law and not that of Spain. They were also convinced that, in the event of a problem (which there was not), they could rest the blame on the UK solicitor and that the British court system would solve it promptly. By contrast getting a court case and legally placing the burden of responsibility on a Spanish based solicitor was something that they did not feel was practical. An interesting and quite probably accurate view point.

Of course in most instances this situation is academic as the sale goes through without a hiccup, however when there are problems they are usually big ones and they seem to be of the kind that do not occur in other territories.

In all instances the golden rule is "buyer beware".

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