Today we travel to northern Spain to visit one of the jewels. If not the major focus of tourism in Cantabria. Such as Santillana of the Sea. A wonderful town that you have to know Santillana del Mar Cantabria.
Santillana del Mar is located in the western part of Cantabria. It is a medieval town that houses a great historical-artistic value Santillana del Mar Cantabria.
A unique location that will leave you speechless. So in this post I will talk about everything you can see in Santillana of the Sea.
As we have already advanced, Santillana del Mar is of great interest to tourists visiting Cantabria. In addition, it is part of the Association of the Most Beautiful Villages in Spain.
Just 30 kilometres from Santander, Santillana del Mar is known as the Villa of the Three Lies, since it is not Santa, nor is it flat, nor does it have a sea.
Among all that can be done in Santillana del Mar, the best way to get to know the town is by strolling through its cobbled streets and especially through its medieval quarter which, despite being small, contains a large number of buildings with a great historical value.
Santillana Mar What To See
Among these buildings, we can find palatial houses currently converted into museums or cultural centres. But without a doubt, what is most striking are its balcony houses full of flowers.
Its beauty is such that the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre, in his work “La Nausea”, defined it as one of the most beautiful towns in Spain. However, its recognition does not stop there, and it is that Santillana del Mar was declared a Historic-Artistic Site in 1889.
If you want to spend a few days full of charm and culture in Santillana del Mar, we invite you to stay in one of the rural houses in this town.
As you can guess Santillana del Mar contains a lot to visit, but below we show you the places that you cannot miss.
One of the attractions of Santillana del Mar is its medieval old town made up of narrow and cobbled streets, where we find stone houses and buildings of great historical value dating from the 14th and 18th centuries.
Throughout its historic center, we will find two very beautiful squares in which nobility hamlets were built in their adjoining streets, such as the Quevedo house, the Leonor de la Vega house or the Águila house.
By visiting this place we will not only get to know the architecture of the town, but we will also be able to know its gastronomy and its culture since we will find many shops with typical products. Now, we are going to see some of the most outstanding places to see in Santillana del Mar.
Collegiate Church of Santa Juliana
Built-in the 12th century, the Collegiate Church of Santa Juliana. The most important religious building in Santillana del Mar. One of the most important monuments of Romanesque art in all of Cantabria. The Collegiate Church of Santa Juliana is made up. Three naves of four sections, three apses, a tower and a dome and tells. Its story that Juliana was martyred in Turkey. That her remains reached the Kingdom of Asturias. Which is why it was built in her memory this monument.
This beautiful collegiate church, which was declared a national monument in 1889, is located right where an old monastery with the same name used to be located and is very visited especially by pilgrims since the Camino de Santiago passes through it.
Next to the Collegiate Church of Santa Juliana, we find the Palacio Velarde or also known as the Palacio de las Arenas.
The Velarde Palace is another jewel that cannot be missed, and this building of Renaissance architecture from the 16th century contains a great history that will take you back to the past. This palace was built for Alonso de Velarde and for years it has belonged to the Velarde lineage and descendants and to the writer Ricardo León, among others.
Next to the waterhole next to the Collegiate Church, we can see two other impressive historical buildings. Two houses that form a single dwelling, joined in a square and that were built between the 17th and 18th centuries.
Something that you cannot miss is the Torre de Merino, located in Plaza Mayor or also known as Plaza Ramón Pelayo in Santillana del Mar. This tower was built in the 13th century and had a military function. However, today it is used as a museum.
On the other hand, we have the Torre de Don Borja, declared a Site of Cultural Interest. An impressive three-story building with medieval origins. Whose current structure and façade date from between the 15th and 16th centuries. This majestic building is a reference to the Gothic style. The area and currently the Santillana Foundation pool.
House built between the XVI and XVII centuries of great beauty. This house symbolizes the new wealth from the Americas and ostentation, through baroque style rivets.
Regina Coeli Diocesan Museum
An impressive building whose original structure dates from the seventeenth century. The Convent occupies, that of the Dominicans. It has an architectural style that mixes the Herrera. Together with the Baroque, on its facade. It also highlights its Renaissance-style cloister.
In the middle of the 20th century, the Diocesan Museum was inaugurated. Which shows more than 600 original pieces belonging to the Diocese of Santander.
What to see near the town of Santillana del Mar
In the surroundings of the town of Santillana del Mar. We can find many other places of interest that you can visit. From the famous Altamira caves to a Castro. The largest natural labyrinth in all of Spain.
The Altamira Caves
We cannot speak of Santillana del Mar without referring to the Altamira Caves. Which is compared to the “Sistine Chapel” of prehistory. The Altamira Caves house different paintings and engravings. That has been made during different periods of history. But without a doubt, the most famous is its ceiling. Where you can see a hundred animals in which a group of bison stands out.
These caves, which were discovered in 1879 and declared. A World Heritage Site in 1985, is usually closed in order to keep. The paintings in perfect condition. Groups of 5 people can only access once a week. However, very close to the original one. You can visit the Altamira Museum and see an exact replica of them.
Castro of El Cinch
Located in Yuso, we can find a site that was discovered very recently, in 2014. At a height of almost 300 meters, this site belonging to the Iron Age stands.
A walled belt where the pre-Roman Cantabrian people lived, of Celtiberian influence. They fought in the Cantabrian Wars, against the Roman legions, between 29 BC and 19 BC
Very close to Santillana del Mar is the Villapresente Labyrinth, a very fun activity to spend with the family. The Villapresente Labyrinth is the largest permanent. Natural labyrinth in Spain since it has more than 5000 square meters and 4000 planted trees. It is important to know that the labyrinth is closed in winter. As you have seen, there is much to see in Santillana del Mar. Its surroundings, do you dare to know it?