We are usually a slow-go family. However, this time we experimented with (for us) long day trips (read: 1 to 1.5 hour) from our base camping site in Santiago de Compostela to see the Tower of Hercules. Here is our “legendary” visit to the oldest Roman lighthouse that is still in use today in A Coruna in northern Galicia, Spain in pictures.
Why A Coruna? Well, the boys are fascinated by Hercules. this city has the Tower of Hercules, several sculptures to remember the legends of Hercules and a Celtic king and the stories of old, and to top it off. . . some beach time, right down the cliff! Here it is in pictures.
According to legend, another of the tasks entrusted to Hercules consisted of going to the world of the dead (Hades) and bringing the dog with the three heads, the canine Cerberus, which was located at its entrance, preventing the exit of those who entered there. To reach Hades, Hercules had to cross the Styx lagoon thanks to the help of the ferryman Charon who was in charge of guiding the wandering shadows of the recently deceased to the other side of the Acheron River provided they had an obol to pay for the trip. Hence in ancient Greece the dead were buried with a coin under the tongue. Source: https://grupocoruna.es/monumento-caronte# (original in Spanish).
The sculpture park at the Tower of Hercules is like visiting an open-air museum with the rugged coastline, the sea and its unforgiving winds as the backdrop. It has 19 works of art from modern artists (20th century) whose works are mostly about ancient myths and legends associated with the Greek hero, Hercules, the Celtic king, Breogán and the Galicians’ close relations to the sea. We show you some of these sculptures and monuments to heroes of old.
You can climb to the top of the tower for 3 euros (1.50 for seniors/reduced rate and FREE on Mondays). You will need to buy the tickets at the entrance to the park a couple of hundred meters from the tower. FREE parking but get there early. At the time of our visit, however, the tower was closed to the public days earlier due to a case of coronavirus/Covid-19.
This is our third Hercules-related visits. The first one was the Rock of Hercules in Gibraltar, the other in Morocco, in the Caves of Hercules with an opening in the shape of Africa where Hercules allegedly rested during his labors.
The Tower of Hercules is apparently the It is a UNESCO World Heritage site and the 2nd-tallest lighthouse in Spain, at 55 meters.
Where to stay in santiago de Compostela? save money. go Camping As Cancelas
If you are heading to Santiago de Compostela or making it your homebase on the road, check out Camping As Cancelas. It is the only campsite in Santiago de Compostela and a little less than a 3-kilometer walk to the Cathedral (or a 15-minute bus ride). This campground is kid-approved and family-friendly for its play areas, swimming pool and proximity to the city center. CHECK OUT OUR QUICK REVIEW of Camping As Cancelas and what to see in Santiago de Compostela in pictures through this link.
NOTE: In case you’re wondering. . . No, we have not received any form of compensation or freebies or anything at all for reviewing or mentioning this camping site or any others on our blog. We just do it for the fun of it.
Next stop: Going beyond Santiago de Compostela, to the end of the world and to where Mother Mary’s ship landed (or appeared).