Vigo Holiday 2012: Day 5 – Cangas & Bouzas

[Previous parts: Day 1; Day 2; Day 3; Day 4;]

Monday, 16th July 2012 – Back On The Water

Today was my last full day in Vigo and I had the morning and early afternoon to myself. Kerryn & Dave unfortunately both had to work. After such an enjoyable day on Sunday I really fancied another boat and beach day rather than spend it walking, and it just so happened that this day  was easily the hottest of my entire visit. Even the small whisps of cloud present yesterday had decided enough was enough.

Next to the boat for the Cies is another service running to the opposite shore of the ria, to the small town of Cangas. It is a much shorter journey, maybe 20 minutes or less, and very is cheap. This worked well because I had agreed to meet up with Dave in the centre of Vigo after he finished work before we went to meet Kerryn, so a short journey back to Vigo would be useful.

It felt like a very relaxing boat trip, it didn’t seem as hurried as the other one, just a nice easy cruise across the river in the sun. Just what I wanted.

On the boat to Cangas

Cangas

As the boat approached Cangas it became obvious it is, in places, much more colourful than some of the other places I’ve been. Of course, on a hot sunny day like this, the blues of the sea and the sky were amazing!

 

Looking from Cangas marina to the beach – my destination

I didn’t know anything about Cangas except that it had a marina and a beach and my plan was to go and lie on the beach for a while, so that is exactly what I did. I thought if time allowed and I felt like exploring I would take a look around. The most I explored was to walk the seafront from the marina and a few hundred yards along the beach, where there were fewer people.

I was surprised just how many people there were.

 

Cangas beach – I walked past the buildings in the middle of the photo, fewer people!

 

I took off my shoes to walk on the beach and the sand was too hot to walk on!

This would be my view for more than two hours.

 

I hadn’t applied enough suncream yesterday so my ankles were already burning red, I had to keep them covered on this beach. I can never seem to tan the back of my arms and legs so I lay down for ages. I forgot how uncomfortably hard sand can be. For a while I tried to read the photography book Kerryn lent me but that wasn’t comfortable. Instead I shut my eyes and dozed for a while and just sat and watched the sea, the boats and the people. Properly relaxing stuff.

Eventually I realised it was time to go if I was to get the 4pm boat, I think it was, to be back in Vigo to meet Dave.

I was all too aware this could be my last time on a hot sunny beach for a while so I enjoyed a slow walk along the beach, shoes off for a while even though it hurt (I only got halfway before they went back on again!). The sun really was very hot for what I’m used to and I’d used up all my drink, once I was away from the beach I’d regretted not getting something from the seller there as there was nothing for sale on the kilometre walk to the marina.

People think midday is the hottest part of the day but it isn’t, that’s when the sun is strongest so you’re at risk of burning, and there’s a difference. The heat continues to build until the sun begins to set so the hottest part of the day is often between 3 and 4pm.
It was something like 3.30pm when I packed up my things and I was aiming for the 4pm boat. I’d intended to speed up walking once I was back on the sea wall but in this heat that wasn’t going to happen, it felt like it took twice as long to get back as it took to get out there. I could finally understand why the Spanish like to lazily amble along the streets! It meant I missed my boat by ten minutes, I had an open return ticket and boats are every half hour, but it meant making Dave wait which was a bit annoying.

I took the opportunity to sit in the shaded air-con of the marina’s cafe for a Coke on ice. It was probably the best one I’ve ever had.

Back To Vigo

The boat trip back was uneventful, I was both sad to leave the beach and also happy to be moving in the wind again, and looking forward to meeting the others. Perhaps a little tired from the sun already, and the realisation hitting me that the holiday was almost over and I wouldn’t see my sister until, well, who knows when?

Off the boat I rushed up to the centre of Vigo (I told you it looks better in the sun) where Dave had been patiently waiting. We caught the bus to Bouzas, the place holding the fiesta with last night’s fireworks. It just so happened that Kerryn was working there that day and there was a fair/carnival going on as part of the fiesta.

Unfortunately the bus was rammed full of sweaty people and once again we had a driver who thought he was Fernando Alonso, which would be fun if we were sat down strapped in but not stood up, with few handholds, compressed in among a lot of people. Thankfully it was only 10-15 minutes away.

Bouzas

It was quiet when we arrived, I guess it was still siesta time. Lots of street bars were set up in a square and loud music was playing. As it turned out Kerryn was a little delayed leaving so we stopped at one of the bars in the shade for another cold Coke. It would normally have been beer but I think after that bus we both agreed it needed to be a soft drink!

Kerryn arrived and we wandered around the old parts of the village, mostly deserted old streets with a few people milling around. Suddenly we turned a corner and there was a little bay complete with a little beach, right there alongside the town.

 

If you follow it around to the right, as we did, you walk along the opposite bank which leads to a footpath to the main ria where you have fantastic views over the islands and all the passing boats. The path sits between the water and a massive car park used to store vehicles made at the local Peugeot-Citroen factory before they are shipped out, don’t let that you put you off because it is worth the walk, you won’t be looking in that direction anyway!

 

Brilliant views.

When you turn the next corner you reach a line of sculptures of marine life! And a little mini lighthouse.

 

The weird thing about the path is it stops here. You have to turn around and walk all the way back! I think it must’ve been put in to get people to exercise, the views and statues give people a reason to come out here and they get fit along the way, which is a good idea.

As we got back to the centre of Bouzas I was overheating terribly, we really ought to have brought some water with us, and I got a bit tired and irritable after being in direct sun for so many hours that day. Thankfully as we wandered around we found something to drink and I felt better again. I’d be no good in a desert.

We found the fairground, set up in the streets, was just coming to life. I loved the Simpsons and Spongebob kids play areas! Enough to make you want to be 5 again. Instead we played a game of darts and all that practice on Friday clearly helped, I’m usually terrible at these games and swear they are rigged somehow, but not this time – this time I won! They were nice people too, Kerryn and Dave were chatting away to them in Spanish for a while. I had no idea what was going on. I had my pick of prizes and took home a Spanish flag as a memento of my holiday, and of course I had to pose with it with my namesake.

After wandering around for a while longer and wondering whether to play more games it was decided a break was in order. We’d actually planned to have some ice cream the other day in Vigo but never got around to it, so why not go now? So we did. they had huge range to choose from – we each chose two flavours and it was bloody good, as was the cold drink. No photos.. too busy eating!

As the place was next door to the hotel that was a good chance to stop for a shower and a change.

Evening

Kerryn and Dave (though I think mainly Dave) put together a nice meal at their place which we ate on their balcony, which was really good. We took a load of their stuff to my hotel, which needed to come home during their upcoming travels.

Afterwards we went for a walk to the marina. The cruise ship terminal and surrounding area had been redeveloped and now there’s a modern bar on the 1st floor. We went there for ‘goodbye’ drinks. There are amazing views of the ria from the balcony as again the sun was setting. Look at the light of the sky behind Kerryn.

The bar balcony overlooking the ria after sunset

We asked the people at the next table to take a photo of the three of us but we all had difficulty with the light, and they had difficulty operating our cameras! We had to laugh though, if you go there when a ship is docked you wouldn’t be able to see anything! We were lucky – the very next day a ship had docked in that exact place.

And so it came to an end.

We said our slightly-teary goodbyes outside the hotel, I wished them well on their travels and that was where the holiday ended, for tomorrow I was to fly home.

[ Read the Final Part including my recommendations ]

For more photos from my trip please click here ]

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