Exploring the Galician coastline and Spain’s most magnificent natural wonder
Road trip: Day 14 – 16 July 2016. Ribadeo, Galicia, Spain
When we planned our 3 month camping road trip, Cathedrals Beach was one of the first pins on the map. We stayed at Camping Poblado Gaviota primarily because of its proximity.
Camping Poblado Gaivota
Cathedrals Beach (Praia das Catedrais) is a popular attraction and there are a lot of camp sites in this area. They all seemed pretty similar but this one got slightly better reviews than the others. The only thing we were worried about was its kid friendliness, we had read a few negative comments, but we found Gaviota very helpful and welcoming and no problem at all for the children. In fact they loved this site as there were loads of other children there at the time.
The site is small and easy to navigate. The restaurant is fine, the food nothing special, but it’s clean and the service is surprisingly good. There’s a lovely outside terrace overlooking the play ground. You can’t see the sea but you can hear the waves crashing not 100m away. So that’s the major attraction of this site – easy access to the beach, though you do have to cross a road. Also it’s just a 10 minute drive to Cathedrals Beach.
The site was designed by a local artist and it is very leafy and attractive, the pitches nicely segregated with shrubs and flowers and good shade overhead. Pitches are pretty tight though, but it was at half capacity – even though it was July – so thankfully it didn’t feel claustrophobic. If it was full though I’d imagine it would. Like the restaurant, the whole site is spotlessly clean, the toilets and showers were a pure joy!
Altitude: Sea level
Pitches: Marked out with shade. Grass surface.
Also self-catering accommodation.
Pets not allowed.
8km stretch of beach to walk
Restaurant, bar and shop
Central communal barbeque and eating area.
Onsite music events during the summer
Tel. +34 982 124 451
Web site: www.campingpobladogaivota.com
Before I hit you with my avalanche of megabyte gobbling photos, a few things about Cathedrals Beach. The tides. It is really important to check the tides beforehand and plan accordingly. Basically, when the tide is out, all the arches and caves are exposed and you can walk underneath them on the sandy beach. When the tide is in, there’s nothing much to see.
Visit this page to check local tide times
Also, if you visit between July 1 and September 30 you must register online. This is a measure the Galician authorities have introduced to control visitor numbers. It’s free, but you need to provide your name, address and passport number. We didn’t know about this when we visited. We got to the top of the queue and had no registration code. They were very accommodating though, allowed us to step aside and register over the phone.
And that’s the third thing. The queues. Like I said, this is a very, very popular attraction. The queues move fast but it’s a steady stream, so if you like having the beach to yourself or plan to take the most amazing photographs of your life (unspoiled by humans), you are better off going off-season or at an unpopular low tide time like 6am for example.
What a day that was!