Pontevedra: stone art
The historic centre of Pontevedra is an example of accessibility and proof of the medieval splendour of the city. Arcades, squares and churches are part of a route that combines history and modernity
The best way to visit the city of Pontevedra is on foot. Its old town was declared a Historic-Artistic Site in 1951. Nowadays, the town still preserves some vestiges of the period of economic growth of the old port as well as its noble and regional architecture. The best starting point to get to know the city of Pontevedra is the Alameda, by the Ruins of San Domingos Church, which belong to the Museum of Pontevedra and are the first stop of a journey through the history of the province.
don’t miss ...
- A Peregrina
- Ruins of San Domingos Church
- Square Praza da Leña
- Museum of Pontevedra
The town’s gem
The Basilica of Santa María A Maior is the town’s gem and a symbol of power of the Guild of Merchants in the 16th century. It is one of the best examples of the Galician Gothic architecture and was declared Asset of Cultural Interest (BIC) in 1931. The façade is a stone altarpiece, created by Cornielles de Holanda and Joâo Nobre. It combines the Portuguese late Gothic and Plateresque styles. It was consecrated as a basilica in January 1962 by Pope John XXIII.
The endless squares in Pontevedra were designated with the names of the guilds or the activities that took place in these spaces, such is the case of the squares Praza da Leña or Praza da Ferrería, whose name comes from the old forges. The soportais (arcade-like structures), which were used to shelter in the event of rain, today house a large number of restaurants inside its renovated stone buildings. In one of these streets we find the Museum of Pontevedra, which comprises five buildings and the Ruins of San Domingos Church.
As a stop on the Way to Santiago de Compostela, if pilgrims follow the yellow arrows they will see many religious buildings such as the A Peregrina Church, a Baroque jewel dating from 1778, the San Bartolomé Church and the San Francisco Church, as well as the Santa Clara Convent.
Some of the most beautiful squares in Pontevedra were designated with the names of the guilds or the activities that took place in these spaces
Civil architecture has also been part of the history of the city. This is the case of the imposing building of the former local office of the Ministry of Finance, example of the late Gothic architecture and a historic and Artistic Monument since 1896, the manor house Pazo de Mugartegui, the theatre Teatro Principal or the City Hall .
The city of Pontevedra, which has been awarded worldwide for its accessibility, is the perfect place to be visited on foot. In this town, history is combined with a large number of restaurants and shops. Some must-visit spots are the squares Mendez Núñez and Verdura, the street Calle Real and the area surrounding the local theatre. In the afternoon, you can stroll around the A Peregrina Church and admire the statue of the famous parrot Ravachol.