The theory about the Galician Christopher Columbus, raised in San Salvador de Poio, reappears with compelling reasons against the traditional belief of his origin as Genoese or Catalan. The route through the key spots that support this theory will take you to different locations in the rías (a type of coastal inlet) of Pontevedra and Vigo dedicated to this figure and his feats.
Christopher Columbus House Museum, a new space in the municipality of Poio, which borders the city of Pontevedra, was opened in 2010. This location is the supposed origin of this sailor where screens, miniatures, bibliography and videos lend support to the theory that claims that this municipality was Columbus's place of birth.
In front of this house museum there is a stone cross with a Jolly Roger symbol on its base, the skull and crossbones that typically appear on black pirate flags. These distinctive features shaped the popular name of "Casa da Cruz" (House of the Cross). This name passed on from generation to generation as a reference to the place where the navigator was raised. The evidence of his origin in the province of Pontevedra gained importance, thanks to a photograph taken at the beginning of the 20th century that shows an inscription that reads "Juan Colón, 1490".
This and other pieces of evidence will make you another upholder of this theory, which combines family history, political conspiracies and the ambition of someone who has the knowledge to navigate and gets the means to fulfil his dream.
Once the city of Pontevedra, Columbus is present on the façade of the basilica of Santa María la Mayor in the shape of a bust, by the rose window on the main façade, next to another distinguished navigator, Hernán Cortés.
You can then move towards the south of the ría of Vigo, to the town of Baiona, where you can visit the Museum of the Pinta Caravel. This is a replica of the caravel commanded by Martín Alonso Pinzón that docked in the harbour of Baiona on 1 March 1493. This was the first European harbour to ever receive the news about the discovery of America.
In 1992, on the occasion of the commemoration of the V Centenary of the Discovery of America, a ship replica was built. Now this ship remains tied up at one of the town's marina docks. It can be accessed on foot through a walkway and it is one of the main attractions in the promenade of Baiona, together with the parador (luxury hotel located in a historic building) on the Monterreal Peninsula, on the left, and the galleries based on traditional coastal architecture, on the right.
Every first weekend of March (or the last one of February, depending on how close 1 March is) the town celebrates the Arribada, a Festival of International Tourist Interest (an honorary distinction granted, in Spain, to the festivals or events involving manifestations of cultural and popular tradition) which recreates the scenes lived over five hundred years ago and it turns the historic centre of Baiona into a medieval town.
For more information, please visit:
Christopher Columbus has gone down in history as the most famous explorer of all time. This is the opportunity to know those scenes that left a mark on both his life and the history of the world.