Unique experiences to enjoy in Palencia
Nothing planned for your next getaway? Here's a great idea. Come and discover Palencia, in the region of Castile-León, where you'll find a couple of sightseeing boats, the spectacular cave of Los Franceses, the Roman villa of La Olmeda, and numerous nature routes. Choose your favourite option. You're guaranteed to have a great time.
One of the attractions of Palencia for visitors is that this part of Spain is home to the start of the Castilla Canal (in the village of Alar del Rey). This is a major work of hydraulic engineering dating from the 18th century which gives rise to a water course which stretches for over 200 kilometres. Visitors to Palencia will be able to follow the banks of this canal either on foot, by bike or on horseback. Another option is to take the plunge and to try kayaking in the waters of the Canal (there are guided routes and kayaks to rent). And best of all, you'll have the chance to take a boat trip on board the sightseeing boats 'Marqués de la Ensenada' (located in Herrera de Pisuerga, with access beside the Presa de San Andrés dam on the Castilla Canal), and 'Juan de Homar' (in the village of Villaumbrales, about 80 kilometres from Herrera de Pisuerga, at the pier located beside the Canal Museum) which ply the canal. It is advisable to book in advance.
Roman villa of La Olmeda.
And how about going back to the 4th century? This is the sensation you'll have when you explore the Roman villa of La Olmeda (in Pedrosa de la Vega). This is a Hispano-Roman mansion from the late Roman Empire which was not discovered until 1968, and is home to some outstanding mosaics. In fact, this is one of the most important archaeological sites from the Roman Hispanic world. You can then round off your visit by visiting the Saldaña Monographic Museum (only 6 kilometres away, with a display of the objects found, including coins and kitchen utensils) and the Roman villa of La Tejada, in Quintanilla de la Cueza.
Cave of Los Franceses
Prepare to see impressive columns, stalagmites and stalactites in this cave which was the last place of rest for the French combatants in the Peninsular War (1808). It is formed mainly by two large chambers, and thanks to its illumination you'll be able to see all its phantasmagorical beauty. It is advisable to book in advance. What's more you can make the most of your visit to explore the surrounding area (places such as Aguilar de Campoo, Santa María de Mave, Santibáñez de Ecla, Moarves de Ojeda and Vallespinoso de Aguilar) and enjoy its heritage, as the province of Palencia is the richest area in Europe for Romanesque monuments.
To experience the nature spaces in Palencia at their very best, we propose five itineraries: the Route of the Reservoirs (best done by car, this is the perfect way to see all the reservoirs in the area); the Fuente del Cobre route (10 kilometres of hiking trails. The Fuente del Cobre is considered to be the source of the Pisuerga river); the Bosque Fósil path (three kilometres along the Castillería valley, where years ago there was an abundance of mining operations); the route of El Roblón de Estalaya (don't miss the legendary oak tree known as 'El Abuelo' –'the grandfather'– in this four-kilometre itinerary); and the route of the water and steppe birds (an itinerary best done by car to see the lakes of La Nava and Boada).
Now that you know all the things you can do in Palencia, all you have to do is decide when to come. Remember that the best time to enjoy outdoor activities is in spring and autumn.
You'll find more information on the web page of the the official website for tourism in Palencia .
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