One day in Santiago de Compostela


Santiago de Compostela is a city that knows how to reward long pilgrimages. Even if you only have one day to visit it, you will know how to embody it on the canvas of your memory forever.

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Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela


The ruins of the most imposing Roman amphitheater

  • It is recommended to book a visit to the museum.


  • The cathedral ticket also includes a visit to the Museum of the Collegiate Church of Sar.


  • After two thousand years of history as a spiritual center, the Cathedral today appears as a heterogeneous set of spaces and aesthetic elements in which the extraordinary history of Compostela can be read.


  • The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela began as a Roman mausoleum where the remains of the Apostle Santiago were buried after his beheading in Palestine in AD 44.


  • As a result of the Roman persecutions of the Christians in Hispania, his tomb was abandoned in the 3rd century. His remains were miraculously rediscovered by the hermit Pelayo, who observed heavenly signs in the place.


  • The discovery was recognized by Bishop Teodomiro de Iria as a miracle, which is why King Alfonso II of Asturias ordered the construction of a chapel on the site. It is said that the King was the first to make a pilgrimage, traveling what is now known as the “primitive route” from Oviedo to Santiago de Compostela.


  • The city of Santiago begins to be built from the Cathedral, with the buildings that the first settlers and monastic groups, in charge of the protection of the relics, were building around the church.


  • The construction of the “Romanesque Cathedral”, in the shape of a cross, was commissioned by King Alfonso VI el Bravo and Bishop Diego Peláez in the 10th century, to house the growing wave of pilgrims.


  • Over time, Gothic, Renaissance and especially Baroque elements would be added to the Romanesque floor, thanks to the incessant flow of money from the archbishopric and patrons, who found in the chapels places of prayer and eternal rest.


  • The greatest aesthetic revolution would come to the temple in Baroque times, which began in 1660 by transforming the main altar and the dome; to later shape the organs, trace the canvas of the Holy Door, embellish the Clock Tower and reach its greatest splendor with the culmination in 1750, of the most iconic image of the cathedral: its magnificent facade of the Obradoiro.


  • The cathedral is the final destination of the thousands of pilgrims who have been making the Camino de Santiago for centuries. Just getting into it makes any trip worthwhile. It is definitely one of the most amazing churches in Europe.


  • Entry Basic Rate € 12 Visitors who cannot benefit from the reduced or free rate. Reduced Rate € 10 Members of large families with Family Book accreditation. Unemployed Pilgrim students accredited Over 65 years old Free access € 0 Under 12 years


  • 1 h - 2 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed

    Hours: November to March. Monday to Sunday: 10:00 - 20:00 April to October. Monday to Sunday: 09:00 - 20:00 Close ticket offices and access to the museum one hour before


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Praza do Obradoiro


The heart of Santiago de Compostela

  • In the square you can hire different guide services around the city.


  • The Plaza de Obradoiro is the monumental center of the city. From it, emblematic buildings such as the Palacio de Rajoy, the Hostal de los Reyes Católicos, the Colegio de San Jerónimo and the most important, the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela are visible.


  • The most photographed image of the cathedral is the one that overlooks the Plaza de Obradoiro, which was placed before the building between the 17th and 18th centuries as a great ornamental curtain. Until then, an arch allowed us to see the Pórtico de la Gloria, now sheltered inside.


  • The double-throw stairs are from the early seventeenth century, and allow to save the unevenness of the land between the square and the floor of the Cathedral. That is precisely the function of the crypt, whose door opens between the first steps. Romanesque in style, it also serves as the architectural and conceptual support to the Pórtico de la Gloria.


  • The Royal Hospital was built from 1501 by order of the Catholic Monarchs, who had visited Santiago in 1486 and noted the deficiencies in health care for citizens and pilgrims. The architect Enrique de Egas built the hospital in a style that says goodbye to the late Gothic and greets the first airs of the Renaissance.


  • The rector of the University of Santiago de Compostela today occupies the Colegio de San Xerome, on the south side of Plaza del Obradoiro. Built in the 16th century by Bishop Fonseca to accommodate poor students of the Arts, this Renaissance building shows a late-Gothic portal that originally belonged to the Azabachería pilgrim hospital.


  • This neoclassical building that receives the name of the founding archbishop allowed the definitive closure of the until then called “Plaza del Hospital”, and from there “Plaza Mayor”. Its tympanum is decorated with the relief of the Battle of Clavijo, that first battle in which, according to legend, the figure of the warrior Apostle appeared to help fight the Muslim invasion. Santiago, represented as the patron saint of the Reconquest, crowns the construction.


  • A view of the square serves to summarize and the history of the city. A 360-degree turn allows the naked eye to recognize the presence of different architectural styles, which emerged in more than 700 years of construction.


  • Free pass


  • 15 min - 30 min


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed


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Torre da Berenguela


One of the greatest treasures of the cathedral

  • The Berenguela Tower is part of the route of many guides who visit the historic center.


  • Initially it was conceived as a defense tower for the city of Compostela. Initiated in the 14th century by Diego de Padrón and ended by Berenguer Landoira, from which the name of the main bell of the Cathedral comes.


  • At 70 meters high, the tower next to those of the Cathedral is visible from much of the city.


  • The clock is equipped only with a hand that fulfills the function of marking the minutes, since the hours are announced by the chimes.


  • The Berenguela bell is the largest in the Cathedral, weighing 6433 kilos, and legend has it that if some midnight, instead of ringing 12 chimes, it rang 13, the demon would have one hour to roam loose throughout the city.


  • Its bells are heard throughout the city, marking the rhythm of life for the people of Compostela. The clock tower is a work of art that adorns the skies of Santiago de Compostela.


  • Free entrance


  • 15 min - 30 min


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed


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Casco histórico de Santiago de Compostela


A tour through the most important buildings

  • There is a wide spectrum of services and guided tours that are offered to get to know the most important points of the historic center.


  • The Acibechería square is the first that the traveler encounters when entering Santiago on the French Way. It was known as Puerta del Paraíso, but in the 18th century it was replaced by the current one, in a neoclassical style, and received the name of Acibechería. The art of jet making, closely linked to the Pilgrimage, flourished in Santiago since the 15th century. In this square were the workshops and stalls.


  • The Plaza de la Quintana is the one that follows in order of historical and architectural importance to Plaza de Obradoiro. It is surrounded by historic houses (Casa da Conga, Casa da Parra) and by the wall of the Monastery of San Paio de Antealtares.


  • The Plaza de la immaculada or Plaza de la Azabachería, is located between the north facade of the Cathedral of Santiago and San Martín Pinario. In the square there are numerous shops that offer tourists the sale of jet accessories or ornaments. Here, in the Plaza de la Inmaculada, the last sections of the French, English and Northern roads that enter the historic center through the Puerta del Camino.


  • The busiest street in the old town of Santiago is Rúa do Franco, which leads directly to the square in front of the cathedral. Here you will find numerous restaurants with Galician specialties. The Fontana del Moro, located in the southern part of the square, was created by Giacomo Della Porta in 1575, counting only on the dolphin and the newts. In 1653 Bernini would add the Moor in the center to give the name to the fountain.


  • Santiago de Compostela has so much to see that it is worth taking a stroll through the old town, and delving into its narrow streets to highlight its most important points.


  • Free


  • 30 min - 1 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed


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Mercado de Abastos de Santiago


The historic commercial center of the city

  • This is a good place to stock up on groceries or have lunch at the food courts.


  • The Mercado de los Abastos has been in operation since 1873, occupying different parts of the city over the years until settling in its current place in 1941.


  • Since 2000, the market has been managed by a cooperative made up of 70 operators.


  • The Market has been in operation for the last three centuries, becoming a leading center in the commercialization of fresh products in Santiago.


  • This is where the past meets the present. A historic market, with shops and restaurants, to stroll around and stock up on local merchants.


  • Free


  • 30 min - 1 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed

    Hours: Open Monday to Saturday, from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The busiest time is between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m., and on the best days Thursdays and Saturdays.


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Museo de las Peregrinaciones


The most important temple of Catholicism

  • It is recommended to reserve entry in advance.


  • The Museum of the Pilgrimages and of Santiago occupies the building of the old Bank of Spain, designed in 1939 by the architect Romualdo Madariaga Céspedes and built on the plot of the Espinosa houses.


  • The profound remodeling that the building has undergone to house the Museum of the Pilgrimages and Santiago corresponds to Manuel Gallego Jorreto (O Carballiño, 1936), one of the most prestigious Galician architects. He has designed, among other buildings, the residence of the president of the Xunta de Galicia or the Council of A Illa de Arousa.


  • The institution was created at the initiative of Manuel Chamoso Lamas at the end of 1951 with the name of Museum of Santiago de las Peregrinaciones. Its objective was to house the archaeological remains and other elements related to Santiago de Compostela and the Jacobean pilgrimage.


  • Santiago de Compostela would not be what it is today if it weren't for the pilgrimages. This museum tells the story of how the city grew to receive millions of pilgrims through the centuries.


  • € 2.40 GENERAL € 1.20 REDUCED - Groups that exceed 15 people and request an appointment 15 in advance. - Holders of a new card or card for students over 18 years of age. - Pilgrims who present the "Compostela" or similar documents. FREE - Under 18s. - Over 65 or retired. - Unemployed. - Cultural and educational volunteering. - Saturday afternoons from 2.30pm. - Sundays. DAYS OF FREE ENTRY May 18, International Museum Day. July 25, National Day of Galicia. October 12, National Holiday of Spain. December 6, Constitution Day.


  • 30 min - 1 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed

    Hours: Tuesday-Friday: 9: 30-20: 30. Saturday: 11: 00-19: 30. Sunday, holidays: 10: 15-14: 45. Closed Monday.


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Mosteiro de San Paio de Antealtares


The temple of the Benedictine order

  • It is recommended to reserve entry in advance.


  • Previously, the building was a monastery of monks dedicated to San Pedro, founded in the 9th century by Alfonso II with twelve Benedictine monks, to take care of and worship the recently appeared tomb of the Apostle Santiago. The current construction belongs almost entirely to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, as the original was demolished.


  • After the departure of the Benedictine monks in 1499, the monastery was occupied by cloistered nuns. The convent was dedicated to San Paio, who as a child was martyred in Córdoba. His cutthroat image presides over the facade of the temple.


  • One of the side walls closes a flank of the Plaza de la Quintana with absolute sobriety, based on smooth walls without decoration. In the center of this wall, a tombstone commemorates the formation of the Literary Battalion organized by the Compostela university students to defend Galicia against Napoleon's Troops.


  • The church, with a Greek cross plan, was designed by Frei Gabriel de Casas. The main altarpiece stands out inside.


  • Through the church we can access the Museum of Sacred Art, in which the primitive altar that accompanied the apostolic sarcophagus is preserved and that was given by Xelmírez to this convent, replacing it with a more grandiose one inside the cathedral.


  • Another of the most beautiful and important religious monuments in the city, telling its story, this time from the perspective of the Benedictine monks.


  • Admission: € 1.50 for the Museum of Sacred Art


  • 30 min - 1 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed

    Hours: Church and museum of sacred art, Monday-Saturday, 10: 30-13: 30 and 16: 00-19: 00 (from Monday to Friday the church opens at 10:00); Sunday, 16: 00-19: 00. WORSHIP. Conventual Mass: Monday-Friday, 7:30 PM; Saturdays, 8:00 (after lauds); Sundays and holidays, 12:00. Lauds: every day, 8:00 am (notify one day before if you want to participate). Vespers: every day, 20:00; Saturdays, 7:30 p.m. Office vigils: Saturdays, 9:15 p.m. LATHE SCHEDULE. 9: 00-13: 00 and 15: 30-19: 00.


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Monasterio de San Martín


An imposing church belonging to the Benedictine order

  • It is recommended to reserve entry in advance.


  • The monastery was built in the Plaza de la Inmaculada by a group of Benedictines who, after discovering the remains of the apostle, decided to settle in front of the Corticela chapel (which today is part of the Cathedral building).


  • The architects who worked on the church were the Portuguese Mateo López, who was in charge of the first designs; the Granada-born Bartolomé Fernández Lechuga, who builds the magnificent ribbed dome and organizes the interior space achieving great majesty; the Salamanca-born Peña y Toro, who is in charge of the containment works as the walls had been yielded, and finally, Fray Tomás Alonso and Fray Gabriel Casas, with different contributions to the monastery façade, cloisters, bell tower and monastic dependencies.


  • They preside in the central part, between the door and the oculus, the Virgin, San Bieito and San Bernardo, while in the pediment that crowns the portal is San Martiño distributing his cape with a poor man. The towers rise only to the height of the façade, due to opposition from the cathedral chapter, fearful that the basilica would lose visibility.


  • Inside, the lavish main altarpiece in the Baroque style, designed by F. de Casas y Novoa and executed by Romay, is strikingly striking. Closing the frontispieces of the transept we find the Altarpiece of San Bieito in the north and the Altarpiece of the English Virgin in the south. In addition to the above, we can also see the Altarpiece of the Socorro chapel, that of Santa Scholastica, that of Cristo de la Paciencia and that of Santa Xertrude.


  • It is also necessary to highlight the choir stalls, made in walnut by Mateo de Prado, and which is like the most important of those made in Galicia and one of the main ones on the peninsula.


  • During 1991, after the monastic rooms were refurbished and the valuable altarpieces cleaned and restored, it hosted the anthological exhibition of Galician art "Galicia no tempo".


  • Along with the Cathedral, the Monastery of San Martín are the most valuable examples of Galician Baroque.


  • € 4 general price. € 3 reduced price for: pilgrims, students, over 65s, large families, people with disabilities, unemployed people.


  • 30 min - 1 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed

    Hours: Every day: 11: 00-19: 00 h.


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Parque Alameda


A cozy walk to walk or rest

  • It is recommended to wear comfortable shoes.


  • With an area of 8 hectares, it is made up of three well-differentiated parts: the Alameda walk, the Santa Susana carballeira (oak grove) and the Herradura walk.


  • Its privileged location, bordering a part of the historic city, made it the main urban garden, also highlighted by the variety and size of its arboreal and ornamental species.


  • On the Paseo de la Herradura you will find the best known and most admired urban view. From there you get a spectacular view of the cathedral standing out magnificent among the mass of historic buildings. It is the most portrayed postcard in the city.


  • In the center of the park is the Chapel of Santa Susana, where Archbishop Diego Gelmírez transferred the remains of the Saint. The chapel dates from the 17th and 18th centuries and belongs to the Baroque style.


  • The park is the reference point for walks and leisure for the people of Santiago. A very cozy space surrounded by green nature.


  • Free entrance


  • 1 h - 2 h


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed


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Praza de Cervantes


A square dedicated to the most important Spanish writer

  • Around the square there are shops and food courts where you can eat.


  • During the 12th century, the place that today occupies the Plaza de Cervantes was the popular meeting point, where the town crier read the municipal agreements and the Archbishop's ordinances. For this reason, one of the streets that leads to the square is called "Rúa do Querétoiro".


  • It is known that acts of faith were performed in the square during the time of the Inquisition and that until 1570 the scroll or column around which justice was dispensed and whose foot stood the gallows was located there.


  • Both buildings are linked by a Lapidaria Gallery, an underpass that crosses the Plaza del Campidoglio without having to leave the museums.


  • Later, by specializing in the sale of food and merchandise, the space acquired the name of "Plaza del Campo" and the main market category. This also explains the name of the church of San Bieito do Campo, whose current neoclassical lines do not suggest that the foundation dates back to the 10th century.


  • The market was moved to the Plaza de Abastos at the end of the 19th century, the square acquired the definitive name of Cervantes. A bust of the writer crowns the fountain and reminds us that the author of “Don Quixote” was the bearer of two surnames of Galician origin: Cervantes and Saavedra.


  • Dedicated to one of the greatest authors of Spanish literature, the square tells an interesting and varied history of the city, having been used as a forum, as a place of inquisitions and as a market through the centuries.


  • Free


  • 15 min - 30 min


  • schedule Subject to business hours

    local_activity No ticket needed



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