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Vigo: A Hidden Gem in Galicia

The Merman posing high about the city's skyline

Vigo: A Hidden Gem in Galicia

Vigo is a lovely little town nestled on the coast of Galicia, right past the border between Portugal and Spain. It’s the place many Portuguese people go for a weekend away and it came highly recommended by our Realtor and friend, Ivo Moura.

Vigo’s oldest and most central marina is the Real Club Nautico de Vigo Yacht Club, located right in the heart of the city, and across the way from our hotel.

Often overshadowed by Spain’s more famous cities, Vigo offers a unique and authentic experience that makes it perfect for a weekend getaway. 

We had exactly one weekend left before heading for London on the way back to Reno, so we thought Vigo would be a great place to spend it. We arrived on a Friday evening and checked into the AC Palacio Universal, which was centrally located to everything. After a quick Google search of what we needed to see in Vigo, we headed out to find El Sireno, also known as the Merman. 

Portrait of Jackie through a glass of wine.
Clay had fun exploring new options with his camera, while Jackie explored the local wine.

This iconic statue was only minutes from our hotel, but we could not find it. Then we looked up to take in one of the weirdest sculptures I’ve ever seen. And we’ve been to Rome. Created by Francisco Leiro, this half man/half fish sits atop two pillars of black granite and looks out to sea. Leiro’s vision of a merman is different from mine as his included human legs, a fish body and a mannish head. 

The good thing about that search is that it brought us to Casco Vello. Also known as old town, this is where we found art galleries, plenty of other sculptures, along with delicious tapas and empanadas, and a little shopping as I discovered my love for Spanish fashion. 

Though it was a quick trip, we met some lovely people, including Momo, who was selling bracelets on the sidewalk. Clay got his contact information and plans to order more of his work. And we also met Lenart (who we noticed because he looks like Clay’s son), and his associates Bart and Dan. We spent a bit of time with these very interesting fellows from Rotterdam and we also plan to stay in touch with them. 

Clay and Lenart posing in the hotel.
Clay with his new friend, Lenart. Now we have people to visit in Rotterdam!

A city full of history, natural beauty, culture and delicious food is a city we will definitely return to. And since it’s so close to our flat in Porto, we’re pretty sure we’ll return many times. 

Plan Your Visit

Vigo is easily accessible by train, car, or plane, with the Vigo-Peinador Airport offering connections to major Spanish cities and some international destinations. Once in the city, a network of buses and taxis makes getting around easy. Visit Vigo Tourism to get the scoop.

Jackie Shelton, APR, is a strategic communications veteran who, after 30 years still has a hard time focusing on one particular aspect, so she has stopped trying.

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