ENOGASTRONOMY AND WELLNESS
A group of friends (4 adults) spend 2 days in A Coruña enjoying its gastronomic wealth. The city centre is packed with bars and restaurants serving both traditional and innovative cuisine.
The visit is mainly on foot as everthing is within reasonable walking distance .
The weather in A Coruña , as it is a city on the northwest coast of Spain, is changable. We advise our friends to pack a raincoat and an umbrella.
We suggest two possibilities depending on their budget:
1.- They can stay in the Hotel Nido( address: San Andrés, 146).It is a one star hotel with a reasonable price: double room 42,00 euros per night. It is centrally- located in the shopping area. It is 50 metres from the beach and very near the «tapas» bars and street cafés.
The buses available are: lines 1 A, 22, 24
2.- Another possible hotel where to stay is: Hotel Blue(address: Rua Juana de Vega, 7) It is a four stars hotel, placed in the city centre, 3 minutes walk from Praza de Lugo and Praza de Pontevedra. It costs 85 euros per night.
The buses available: lines 11, 3, 5 6
Praza de Lugo Market:
We strongly recommend a mid-morning visit to this market situated in the heart of the city shopping’s district and just a few steps away from the port and its wholesale fish market. The freshest fish and shellfish, all still alive and the finest local produce from the land can give visitors an insight of the value
of our Atlantic cuisine.
The market is in the centrally- located Praza de Lugo. One of
its features, apart from the excellent quality of its products, is
the women who run the market stalls, known locally as «Las Placeras». They are outspoken, funny, friendly and experts not only in selling their fish but also their city.
You can also admire the beautiful modernist houses that
surround the Plaza de Lugo. They were built at the beginning
of the XIXth century.One of the best examples is «Casa Arambillet».
Our tourists can have a pre-lunch drink or appetizer in the lively area of wine bars, beer cellers, traditional bars and street cafés. The most famous streets are . Calle Olmos, Galera, Barrera, Franja, Torreiro. You can taste typical «tapas» like:
Pulpo a feira:octopus seasoned and drizzled with top quality oil.
Raxo: The traditional raxo served in our bars and inns is essentially fried marinated pork.
Mussels: The sea around Lorbé is full of platforms where mussels are grown. Steamed or in many other ways , they are delicious, affordable and very healthy.
Empanada Gallega: A flat pie with finely chopped savouring fillings such as tuna, meat, cod, octopus, etc
Spanish omelette. A round omelette made with sliced potatoes and eggs.
All these «tapas» can be accompanied by our wines with D.O (Designations of Origin).
We suggest :
Rias Baixas D.O . Fresh fruity wines made from the albariño grape variety.
Ribeiro D.O The designation is best known for its white wines usually served chilled and a good pairing for delicious seafood dishes.
An Estrella, a draft beer. » La Estrella de Galicia» , an internationally acclaimed beer, was born in A Coruña back in 1906.
After having some «tapas» before lunch, as many groups of local families and friends usually do, we continue our visit to MARIA PITA SQUARE, which houses the town council and many important historical buildings, Just next to the tourist information office, it is «Mesón A Penela«, we we can have lunch and taste delicious mussels, octopus and caldo gallego: It is a broth made with potatoes, beans, tender turnip greens , a small lump of pork lard and pork shoulder. It should be served piping hot.
If you want to taste shellfish you can go to one of the many «marisquerías». All of them are quite expensive but the good quality of Galician shellfish is unbeatable.. The wealth of our tidal inlets, our rugged coastline where goose barnacles cling to the rocks make Galicia the best region of Spain to taste all kinds of shellfish: mussels, spider crabs, scallops, clams, etc.
In the afternoon:
A walk along «Paseo de la Marina» where you can see the city’s galleries and the fishing boats that moor practically on the doorstep of these houses. This street or «paseo» is full of otdoor street cafés where you can have a cup pf coffee or an ice cream.
Afterwards , you can go shopping to «La Fe Coruñesa» in Riego de Agua Street, 8 . It is a gourmet or delicatessen shop. You can find a wide range of good quality traditional Galician products: tinned seafood, homemade chocolates, wines and liquors, beans, cheese, homemade jams and buiscuits, traditional Galician cakes from different parts of the region. Originally, «La Fe Coruñesa» was a chocolate factory which was founded in 1926.
In the evening:
You can have dinner in any of the many restaurants and «tapas» bars in the area around Maria Pita Square. We suggest»Entre Bateas»(Rua Franja,48). This is a small restaurant that is well decorated with marine themes. Among the dishes that can be tasted: great tuna tartar, crabs, octopus with vegetables and baked potatoes.
Visitors can taste hot chocolate and «churros» for breakfast in one of the «churrerías» called Bonilla. The oldest and most famous hot chocolate cafeterias in the city. Bonilla has its own factory of crisps and «churros «and they provide them to many local cafés and bars. Depending on the hotel chosen you can either go to Bonilla in Juan Florez Street , 30 or to Real Srtreet, 54.Both of them in the city centre.
After breakfast, you can visit «Jardín de San Carlos» in the old town . From one of its balconies one can have a beautiful bird eye view of the fishing port and «The Castle of San Antón«, which was a former fortress built in the XVI th century and nowadays it houses the archeological museum of A Coruña.
Ticket Price: 2 euros.
Timetable: From September to June: from Monday to Saturday(10.00 a.m to 19.30p.m), Sundays and bank holidays (from 10.00 a.m to 14.30 p.m). In July and August (from Tuesday to Saturday from 10.00 am to 21.00 p.m and Sundays and bank holidays from 10.00 a.m to 15.00 p.m)
As we are in the old town we can have lunch in one of the many restaurants in this area,. Just the street behind María Pita Square (Rua Capitán Troncoso, 18) we can find «La Taberna del arriero«. It specialises in traditional cuisine ranging from Betanzos style tortilla, to roasted meat, grilled octopus, homemade ham croquettes, and homemade varied desserts. There is a wide range of food at reasonable prices.
In the afternoon.
A walk along the promenade by the seashore as it is the longest urban promenade in Europe (13 kilometres long) .Later, you can go shopping to another famous traditional good quality food and drink shop «Casa Claudio» (Rua San Andrés, 113).It has been opened since 1889. They sell selected gastronomic and enological products such as wines, liquors, champagne, «cavas» (from Catalonia), tinned seafood, honey, spices, smoked products,, patés,etc.
In the evening
You can have dinner in «Alia Die» meaning » A different Day». Located in the city’s gastronomic epicentre. (Rua Olmos, 14) . Perfect for those who are looking for something rather than octopus and seafood. The menu is based on fresh and original «tapas». It also serves a wide range of coffees, chogolates and sweets.
SAN JUAN BONFIRES AND SARDINES
In the month of June A Coruña celebrates the arrival of the summer on beaches and in districts of the city. . On the night of the summer solstice, 23rd June , the city’s most authentic districts and beaches are filled with thousands of sardine barbecues in a festive atmosphere filled with music and good cheer. The roasted sardines are served with cornbread. At midnight, people head for the beaches of Riazor and Orzán to watch the burning of the falla sculpture and the firework display.
CARNIVAL AND LACÓN CON GRELOS.
February is the time when A Coruña celebrates its unique carnival, known locally as Entroido Choqueiro. A celebration in which the classic pot-boiled pork shoulder and turnip greens play a starring role. «Lacón con grelos» is the most traditional dish for the winter months and the focal point for a gastronomy event held in restaurants and bars, accompanied by the traditional soup and desserts such as: «orejas» ( sweet fried dough) and » filloas»( a kind of crêpe),all paired with good red wine.