An outdoor temple honouring the god Bacchus. That is Cambados, the centre of wine culture in the province. You will grasp the importance of grapes the moment you set foot in the town's stone streets. And also in the countryside, where the vineyards on the horizon make for a spectacular view. And in the restaurants, where you will find recommendations to taste the vintages of this land.
This year, Cambados has been declared European Wine City, making the valley of O Salnés, the largest of the subareas belonging to Rías Baixas Designation of Origin, the heart of wine culture. On the left margin of the ría (coastal inlet) of Arousa, and at sea level, these wines are full-bodied. You can enjoy them every year at the Wine Festival, declared a Festival of National Tourist Interest, and responsible for the municipality welcoming floods of visitors. On this occasion, the nearly 100 activities associated with this distinction help to put Cambados, this year's top destination, on the map.
These activities include food events, which will play a major role at the Albariño Festival, at the Scallop Festival and at the numerous tastings and wine-pairing sessions that have been organised. Cooking demonstrations and technical classes for professionals round out the culinary side of this celebration, where children will also have the chance to display their skills in the kitchen.
Furthermore, Cambados offers several sporting competitions and activities, and the most special of all is the wineries route, stretching across a surface of 23.5 square kilometres (approximately 9.1 square miles), six of which are located in the town centre and can be explored on foot. The rest are on the outskirts, so it is advisable to move around in a vehicle. Wandering about the old town is a recommendable alternative to get to know the true character of Cambados; in this space, the stone has shaped such well-known spots as Fefiñáns Square, the Church of San Bieito, the Homage Tower or the Pazo de Fefiñáns, among others.
Certain areas, including gender equality, music or history are also an essential part of the programming in Cambados as European Wine Capital. This history is present in Cambados's Ethnography and Wine Museum, located in a privileged space, very close to the Ruins of Santa Mariña Dozo, a Monument of National Tourist Interest. If you pay a visit, you will learn about the area's popular culture, its art and its wine culture, as well as the tools used for harvesting grapes and producing wine. These instruments have a prominent place in these rooms, located in the old rectory and a new building, which are joined together by a glass footbridge.
And, finally, Cambados's seaside promenade is the perfect spot for a leisurely stroll. On the coast, the Tower of San Sadurniño bears witness to its former defensive purpose, linked to the protection of the Cathedral of Santiago from possible sea invasions.
This is Cambados, the land where tourism and leisure time activities are in plentiful supply.