So you’re planning a trip to the north of Spain, but can’t decide if it’s worth your while visiting the region of Asturias?
Well, let us put you out of your misery – it absolutely is!
Rugged coastline, impressive mountainous landscapes and some of the most stunning beaches in all of spain – this is what Asturias has on offer. As well as nature, the principality of Asturias has so many amazing characterful cities for you to explore. This beautiful area is one of the lesser known regions of Spain, but honestly, it is a real hidden treasure. Located on the dramatic north coast of Spain looking out to the Bay of Biscay, the scenery here really packs a punch! This post covers everything you need to know about the autonomous region of Asturias, and most importantly, lets you know if it is worth visiting.
If you want to dive in and find out about the best Asturias road trip check out the link below.
Where is Asturias?
You can find the peaceful region of Asturias on the north coast of Spain sandwiched in between Galacia and Cantabria. The region is essentially a series of sweet coastal villages with an immense backdrop of the limestone peaks of Picos De Europa, the UNESCO protected nature reserve.
Asturias is known as part of ‘Green Spain’. This region takes pride in having tremendous greenery and lush flora. The location of Asturias in the northwest of Spain, means this area has the best climate for the vegetation to thrive. ‘Green Spain’ is essentially a long strip along the north coast of Spain which has a maritime climate.
How To Get To Asturias
Getting to the principality of Asturias is fairly straightforward. Asturias Airport (OVD) is an international airport which is pretty centrally located. It is roughly a 30-minute drive from the Capital of Asturias, Oviedo. This airport flies direct from the UK as well as many other European destinations.
Once you have made it to Asturias, commuting around is a completely different story.
Renfe is the main rail network which operates in the area. If you plan on sticking to the main cities such as Gijon, Oviedo and Aviles travelling by rail will be no problem at all. There is a secondary rail network, FEVE, which also operates in Asturias. It is not possible to book tickets online for the FEVE trains as they are not a national rail network and so are not recognised. The drawback of public transport is that you are restricted to timetables and travelling to remote areas is a lot more difficult.
Hands down the best way to travel around Asturias is by car… or motorhome. The roads are very well connected and this form of travel gives you the freedom to go wherever you want at any given time without the worry of getting left stranded. One of the most amazing things about Asturias is that a large chunk of it is national parks. Due to the areas mountainous landscape, being able to drive to distant, breathtaking places such as Picos De Europa is unparalleled.
When To Visit Asturias
Unlike the south of Spain which can get unbearably hot, northern Spain hosts fairly reasonable temperatures year round. The best weather in Asturias is undoubtedly the summer with temperatures at a very comfortable 23°C with the lowest levels of rainfall. This is the perfect weather for enjoying the beaches and strolling around the cities without getting sweaty and lethargic.
The location of Asturias in the northwest of Spain means it has a maritime climate. This means it is pretty mild all year round. The summers don’t get too hot and the winters don’t get too cold. This climate lends itself well to tourism all year.
An important thing to note about the weather in Asturias is that there is quite a lot of rainfall. The winter months have the most rain but there is still a good chance of rain if you visit in the summer. For a month-by-month breakdown of the temperature and rainfall in Asturias click here.
Other than the weather, when choosing the best time to visit somewhere, it is important to think about how busy it is. Asturias, in general, does not get as crowded as other Spanish cities in summer however it certainly does have a lot more visitors in the months of July and August. This increase in population is because a lot of Spanish holidaymakers like to make their way up to the north coast to escape the unbearable heat of the south. So international tourists don’t congest Asturias, but local tourists do. For this reason, we find that the shoulder seasons, spring and autumn are perfect for visiting Asturias.
Food And Drink Of Asturias
If you consider yourself a bit of a foodie, Asturias will definitely be worth visiting for you.
The autonomous region of Asturias is the home to the famous Spanish hard cider and it’s fair to say they are pretty obsessed with it. Whilst visiting the area immerse yourself in the culture and try some of Gijón’s notorious apple cider. Asturian cider tastes quite different to other ciders from around the world. The cider has a very tart taste to it and is not a sparkling drink. Another serious difference with Asturian cider is that it needs to be aerated, this is achieved by the pouring method. The traditional Asturian way to pour cider is from a bottle raised high above your head to your glass way below at knee height – the larger the distance, the more impressive.
Whilst visiting a traditional Asturian a cider house be sure to try some of the traditional delicacies. We loved cachopo – this dish is quite similar to a chicken cordon bleu, except it’s beef. It is essentially two thin beef fillets with ham and cheese sandwiched in between and covered in breadcrumbs. This is usually served with chips – delicious. Asturias has a few other delicacies including fabada Asturiana. This is the most famous regional dish. It is a hearty stew made with Asturian white beans, chorizo and pork shoulder. One of the best ways to discover the region is by trying the local cuisine.
Best Places To Visit In Asturias.
There is a lot to look forward to in this region; make the most of Asturias by immersing yourself in the culture, nature and outdoor activities. Explore the characterful cities and force yourself up the mountains in picos de Europa. You won’t regret it. And of course be sure to make the most of the stunning sandy beaches which look almost tropical! There are not many international tourists here which makes it so fantastic to visit. The region feels undiscovered, and unspoilt.
Check out the main cities in the region, Oviedo, Gijón and Ribadesella. The guides below will point you in the right direction of the best things to do and see here.
On the whole, I think it’s pretty easy to say that yes, Asturias is definitely worth visiting! From the incredible food to the impecable sights there is really something for everyone here. Make the most of the region by exploring the charming fishing villages as well as the national parks. If you have any questions about Asturias, dont hesitate to ask.