Far away from the Mediterranean crowds in the northwest corner of Spain is Galicia. It’s less well-known (and far from) glitzy Madrid, sun-soaked Seville, and energized Barcelona. In fact, if you look at its geographical location and listen to the local dialect, it seems more a part of Portugal than Spain.
Even less known is Galicia’s rich Celtic heritage, complete with wind-swept cliffs, occasional bagpipers, and rainy cold winters. However, among insiders (i.e. mostly the Spanish), it’s also known for its beautiful tourist-free Atlantic coastline and excellent seafood and wines.
One of the best ways to see Galicia is on the road. From there, you can take in its beautiful wild side: crumbling abandoned villages, sleepy coastal towns with stunning views, mountainside towns full of rolling vineyards, and hidden empty beaches bordering natural reserves. Needless to say, summer has a lot to offer in Galicia.
Another alternative to the road is the famous Camino de Santiago, a range of trails each offering its own stunning views. If you’re up for all the walking (and a spiritual adventure), it’s a great way to explore the region. The final destination of that special walk, of course, being the grand cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.
While my journey around Galicia has, at times, seemed like a spiritual one, it has also been a slow and lazy one taken from the comfort of a van. A van, I might add, decked out for sleeping at the beach. It has meant endless road trips when I’m visiting, long summer days spent on uncrowded beaches moving from one charming coastal village to the other, eating along the way, and always having a great view to admire.
In the end, this seemingly “untapped” region and its unassuming nature mixed with Spanish charm, easily wins one over.
This collection of photos was taken on my Agfa Click 2, a medium-format camera, with Kodak Ektar film. I like the mix of cool and sun-hazed tones and the unedited flaws—they fit with the place.