There is nothing quite like taking a relaxing stroll through some of the beautiful pazos (manor houses) scattered around Galicia. These impressive stately homes, many of which are hundreds of years old, delight everyone that is lucky enough to visit them. That is why we have decided to compile a list of the most interesting manor houses of the Rías Baixas, so that you don’t miss out on the opportunity to visit them.
Pazo de Oca – A Estrada
The Oca manor house is a magnificent palace located in the municipality of A Estrada in the province of Pontevedra. Although its earliest construction dates back to the 13th century, the current buildings were built in the 18th century.
This picturesque palace has a great baroque style mansion and various annexes. It is situated on an extensive country estate which consists of splendid gardens and an attractive vineyard.
The gardens are notable for having a large variety of flowers, such as azaleas and camellias, and trees such as oaks and chestnuts.
The palace is open to the public and visitors can visit the mansion, the gardens and the land.
Pazo de Rubianes – Vilagarcía de Arousa
The Rubianes manor house is an historic country estate situated in the Rías Baixas region near Vilagarcía de Arousa. This is one of the oldest pazos in Galicia. One of its oldest elements is the fortified tower dating from the 12th century which served as the starting point from which the noble Galician family of Caamaño began to build their residence in 1411.
This manor house is notable for its beautiful Baroque façade and its beautiful botanic gardens containing a spectacular collection of camellias.
Pazo de Señorans – Vilagarcía de Arousa
The Señorans manor house is an historic country estate situated in the Rías Baixas region. Its origins date back to the 16th century when it was a traditional stately home. Today, it has been converted into a winery and its well-known white wines, produced from the Albariño grape variety, have protected designation of origin (PDO).
Anyone wanting to visit this manor can visit the vineyards and the catacombs, as well as taste the wines from the estate.
Pazo de Fefiñáns – Cambados
The Fefiñáns manor house is a Galician stately home located in the town of Cambados. This Renaissance style palace was built by Don Juan Sarmiento Valladares, counsel to King Phillip II in the 16th century, and includes new Baroque style additions from the 17th century which were commissioned by the Viscount of Fefiñáns, Don Gonzalo Sarmiento de Valladares.
This manor house is one of the most visited places in Cambados. As it is still lived in, visitors are only allowed to view some common rooms which are not currently in use. The outdoor areas of the manor house can also be visited, such as the arms courtyard, the original vineyard, the family’s private woodland and the winery, which is situated in the lower part of the building.
Pazo Quinteiro da Cruz – Ribadumia
The Quinteiro da Cruz manor house is located in the municipality of Ribadumia in the province of Pontevedra. The manor house consists of a stately home in the Neo-classical style which was built in the 18th century. The exterior has various interesting elements, such as the two raised granaries, the 18th century Calvary cross, the dovecot and the chapel.
The most notable thing about this manor house is its attractive gardens, which are of high botanical interest because of their great variety of flowers and plants. Currently, these gardens have over 1000 varieties of camellias, as well as other exotic species.
The manor house also has its own winery where they produce wine using the albariño grape, and they offer guided visits, tastings and samplings of their wines.
Pazo Quiñones de León or Pazo de Castrelos – Vigo
The Quiñones de León or Castrelos manor house is an impressive palace situated in the Castrelos Park within the city of Vigo. The building was constructed in the early 17th century, when it was known as the Pazo de Lavandeira and, since then, it has passed through prominent families of the area. At the end of the 19th century, the manor house was passed to María de los Milagros Elduayen, 8th Marchioness of Valladares, and her husband Fernando Quiñones de León, Marquis of Alcedo, who renovated the building and lived in it until 1918. Finally, in 1924, the manor house was donated to the city of Vigo, under the condition that it became a museum and a public park.
Today, this manor house is open to the public as a museum. Visitors can explore the building’s interior as well as the gardens, which contain a variety of trees as well as both native and exotic plants.
If you decide to visit the Pazo de Castrelos, we suggest that you make the most of it and explore all the nooks and crannies of Vigo and its surroundings. From city of Vigo’s port, you can visit one of the destinations with the highest tourism interest in the area, the Islas Cíes. The Mar de Ons Ferry will transport you to these islands where you can take interesting walks and relax on its beautiful beaches.
As you can see, there are many manor houses along the Rías Baixas. So if you don’t have much time to spare, we recommend that you visit one of the most typical ones. Whichever one you choose to visit, you are sure to be delighted by the beauty and the history of these Spanish treasures.