A Coruña is known as the white city thanks to its glazed, white-coloured balconies facing the Port (Dársena de la Marina/Puerta Real) which give protection from the wind and rain. It’s the main financial and business centre in Galicia, superbly situated on a small peninsular surrounded by the wild Atlantic Ocean. It is a major port city and a popular cruise liner stop-off point. The Old Town is well preserved and focused around Maria Pita Square (Praza de María Pita) with impressive colonnaded, unified buildings including the elegant Town Hall and a statue of Maria Pita waving a spear. She is a local heroine who helped to repel an English siege in 1589 killing many english soldiers in the process!
The richest man in the world, Amancio Ortega, lives here having set up Inditex with its famous brands like Zara, Massimo Dutti and Bershka. This is a place to go shopping either in the area around Calle Real or at Marineda City, the largest shopping centre in Spain. Riazor Beach in the centre is popular with tourists and locals alike but there are plenty of beaches in the area. The new Dársena is full of shops and bars where businesses associated with the fishing industry are clustered. A Coruña is a very welcoming place with some of the best restaurants and the highest concentration of bars in Spain and superb nightlife where the visitor is warmly welcomed and it’s easy to have a great meal and a good time.
The Paseo Marítimo (maritime walkway) is the longest, continuous walkway in Europe stretching as far as the entire peninsular of the city. The locals love to go for a walk, especially at the weekends to enjoy the fantastic views of the city, the Atlantic Ocean and looking across the rías to Ferrol. Keep walking along the walkway passing the 16th century San Antón Castle and Museum takes you to the Roman lighthouse and UNESCO world heritage site, the 1st century Torre de Hercules. This is the city’s most visited sight and the only working Roman lighthouse in the world and dominates the skyline standing above its rocky outcrop setting, to warn ships off the dangerous Costa da Morte (Coast of Death).
A Coruña has lots of museums and attractions worth visiting including the El Aquarium Finisterrae which even has a sealed enclosure, El Domus Museum about mankind, Belas Artes Museum with its collection of 16-20th century European art, the Military Museum, an interesting lift up to the San Pedro hill, and not forgetting the football ground of the local team Deportivo de la Coruña, El Estadio de Riazor.
Population: 243,978 (2016)