This past Saturday the group went on an excursion to three beautiful places: Cangas de Onis, the lakes of Covadonga located in los Picos de Europa, and Covadonga.
Cangas de Onis
Our trip started in the quaint town of Cangas de Onis, Asturias’ first capital located about an hour and a half from Oviedo. The town consists of one main road with narrow roads coming out of it. Though it was small, it was the perfect place to walk around and do some souvenir shopping. The town is famous for its still-standing medieval bridge and the Chapel of Santa Cruz. As soon as we arrived a small group of us went to see the bridge, which was built on top of the Sella river. A Latin cross can be seen hanging from the middle of the bridge. Next we walked to the other side of the town to see the Capilla de la Santa Cruz (chapel of the holy cross).
Picos de España
The next stop in our excursion was the famous mountains and lakes of Covadonga. Breathtaking, beautiful, and astonishing are only a few ways to describe the views from the mountains. We took the bus all the way to the top to see the two lakes, Lake Enol and Lake Ercina. The roads the bus took were narrow, so it was nerve-racking when the bus made a turn and the road underneath us could not be seen. In the three hours we were there we hiked, ate lunch, and hiked again. These mountains are home to many cows, so they walk around freely and even on the roads with the cars. The driver had to be careful on the roads because the cows jumped over the fence once in a while.
Our last stop was to the small town of Covadonga which is located about 20 minutes from the mountains and lakes. Covadonga is famous because of the Virgin of Covadonga, who is said to have appeared to Christian soldiers to cheer them on and give them strength during the Moorish invasion. A small statue and shrine with the image of the Virgin are housed inside a small, outdoor chapel that is used for daily Catholic services. To reach the chapel one must go through a cave and to the end of it. Inside the cave is also the grave of Pelayo, the founder of Asturias.
Underneath the cave there is a stone fountain with seven spouts. According to the legend, the person who drinks from all of these seven spouts in one breath will get married within the year. So far no one has been able to prove this legend to be accurate.