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Travel Guide Europe Spain Asturias Oviedo

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Introduction

The Cathedral in Oviedo

The Cathedral in Oviedo

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Oviedo is the capital of the Spanish region of Asturias, located in the northwestern coastal area of the country. The city has about 225,000 inhabitants.

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Sights and Activities

Oviedo boasts a range of monuments, which, together with the monuments of the Kingdom of Asturias, are placed on the Unesco World Heritage List.
Throughout the city there are many sights which are worth a visit:

  • Cathedral of San Salvador
  • Cámara Santa de Oviedo
  • Santa María del Naranco Hall,
  • San Miguel de Lillo
  • Basilica of San Julián de los Prados.
  • La Foncalada.
  • Town Hall (Casa Consistorial)
  • La Balesquida Chapel
  • House of the Llanes
  • The Monastery of San Vicente, home of the Archaeological Museum of Asturias.
  • The Convent Church of Santo Domingo
  • El Fontán Market
  • Casas del Cuito
  • Museum of fine arts

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Events and Festivals

  • Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos de Oriente

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Weather

Oviedo has a mild to warm climate. Summers last from June to September when daytime temperatures are usually between 25 and 28 °C and night average between 15 and 17 °C. Winters are from December to February with day still around or slightly above 10 °C and nights around 6 °C. Summers are fairly dry with just around 25mm of rain a month, but from November to February there is about 100-130mm of rain a month. Late spring and early autumn are a good time for a visit, avoiding rain, warm weather and crowds all together.

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Getting There

By Plane

Asturias Airport (OVD) is about 45 kilometres from Oviedo.
Airlines flying here are Regional to Paris, Air Berlin to Berlin, Air Europa to Fuerteventura, Lanzarote, Palma de Mallorca and Tenerife-South, Easyjet to London and Geneva, Iberia to Madrid, Air Nostrum to Alicante, Barcelona, Brussels, Lisbon, Madrid, Málaga, Sevilla and Valencia, and both Spanair and Vueling to Barcelona.

By Train

Oviedo train station (calle Pepe Cosmen) is on the north side of la Calle Uría (the center of the city), where there are many connecting local bus routes. There is also a taxi stand just outside the station. It is next to the coach station. Renfe has trains to Madrid and many other cities and towns.

By Car

There is a convenient ring-road,with various exits into Oviedo. There are places to charge, but they are not near, check directions before getting into A6. Lugones will be your easy option to return. To Oviedo, freeway will take by car in less than 20 minutes to Gijón or Avilés.

Distances to/from Oviedo: Madrid 450 kilometres, Bilbao 305 kilometres, A Coruna 325 kilometres, Gijon 30 kilometres.

By Bus

The Oviedo Coach Station (calle Pepe Cosmen, tel. +34 902499949) is located in the centre of town, next to the Oviedo train station. There are coach routes to most towns in Asturias and the North of Spain, as well as Madrid and some other Spanish large cities, like Sevilla and Barcelona. International coach routes link Oviedo daily with Paris, Brussels and Genève.

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Getting Around

The best way to get around is by walking.

Most of the center of the city can only be visited that way, because little motor traffic is allowed. Where traffic is possible, be prepared for jams and narrow passes, as sometimes parking is permitted on both sides of the road.

The local Buses (Autobuses Urbanos de Oviedo, tel. +34 985222422) are fairly reliable, and on every bus stop there is a screen with the time for arrival of the next bus. Almost all local buses go down Calle Uria. The single fare is €1.20 (children under 4 free).

There are plenty of taxis, although they are not cheap. Minimum charge at non-peak hours is €4. Although they can be found on taxi ranks and on the streets, you can contact one of two companies directly: Radio Taxi Ciudad de Oviedo (tel. +34 985250000) or Radio Taxi Principado (tel. +34 985252500).

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Eat

There are many places to eat in the old-town, both indoors and in small secluded squares such as El Fontán or Gascona, to name just two. Down calle Gascona you will be able to get a huge set menu for around €10. The set menu (menú del día) may not be on the menu you are given, so you may have to ask.

Typical dishes of Oviedo are those common to all of Asturias. The Fabada Asturiana is a bean stew with a reputation all over Spain that is worth trying (maybe not in the evening!). A really well known Asturian dish is the Cachopo, this one is meat with ham and cheese all breaded. The Cachopo deserves a try. Fish and shellfish are of great quality. A local cheese, cabrales, also has an excellent reputation, especially if you like strong flavours. Less known are the gamoneu and afuega'l pitu cheeses. Asturias also has a tradition for rice pudding (arroz con leche).

There are many popular places to eat, the more known are: Tierra Astur (in Gascona there are two down the street there is a grill with local products and up the street there is the restaurant with every product said above. Also in the Fontán there are two: Casa Ramón with fish from the shores and Casa Amparo. Near the Cathedral there are many places to drink and eat tapas, like Plaza del Riego with restaurants of ham and El Reloj de Porlier with its great asturian and international food.

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Drink

Cider (sidra) is something that should not be missed. The cider you will find in Asturias is natural cider and has a reputation all over Spain. Drinking cider in Asturias is a ritual in itself: it is poured from on high in order to incorporate air into the cider as it falls from the bottle to the glass. When you get your glass of cider it will be naturally fizzy. You are meant to drink in one gulp what the waiter offers you, leaving a little in the base of the glass. You then pour what's left out of the glass and leave the glass on the table until the waiter offers you more. Be aware that cider pouring is a messy business and the floor will get very, very wet and sticky (which is why the floors of sidrerías are covered in sawdust).

In many other bars and restaurants there is cider available. Look out for signs saying "Sidrería" or "Chigre". The best place to find a number of Sidrerías by far is La Calle Gascona {100 mts from the Cathedral}. There are also plenty of wine bars close to Gascona street, on Calle Jovellanos. Do not miss El Patio de los Naranjos with friendly staff, good wine and tapas.

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Sleep

There are plenty of hotels of all categories in and near the old-town. If you are traveling by car, you might want to consider staying in a dwelling in a smaller village nearby.

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Hotel Cityexpress CovadongaC/ Covadonga 7Hotel87
Hotel Santa ClaraSanta Clara, 1Hotel-
Husa Santo Domingo PlazaBulevard de la Ronda Sur s/nHotel-

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet is widely available within Spain. Most airports have wifi-zones and in most towns there are internet cafés or shops where you can use internet for a fixed price. Wi-Fi points in bars and cafeterias are available after ordering, and most hotels offer Wi-Fi connection in common areas for their guests.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

The international access code for Spain is +34. The emergency number for police, ambulance and the fire brigade is 112.

In cities you can find plenty of public phones, and 'locutorios'. The latter are small shops where you can use the phone and use internet. Most of them also sell prepaid cards for mobile telephones. These shops are used a lot by foreigners to call to their mother country.

The main mobile network operators in Spain are Yoigo, Vodafone, Movistar and Orange, as in most of Europe voice and data coverage is generally good in urban areas however it can be patchy in rural locations. Cheap mobile phones (less than €50) with some pre-paid minutes are sold at FNAC or any phone operator's shop (Vodafone, Movistar, Orange). Topping-up is then done by buying scratch cards from the small stores, supermarkets, vending points (often found in tobacco shops) or kiosks.

Post

If you want to post a card, you can head to the post office (Correos). The Spanish post is not yet as efficient as colleagues in other countries so receiving a card can take a bit longer than the number of days that it should take. On the website of Correos, you can find the locations of nearby post offices.
Post offices are generally open from 8:30am to 2:00pm, although times will vary according to the size of the city/town and the main post offices might be open until the early evening. Most will also open again on Saturday mornings, but in the smaller towns will close as early as 12 noon. When posting a letter, look for a yellow box and, if possible, post at the post office itself where there will also be divisions for local, national and international mail. Be prepared for long queues at the post office. This is why tobacco shops sell stamps and many will also have the facility to weigh packages. Standard letters/postcards of up to 20 grams sent within Spain are €0.34. However, non-standard letters/postcards of up to 20g are €0.39. Letters/postcards of 20 to 50 grams are €0.45. In the case of international shipping, the price is €0.64 to most countries within Europe for standard envelopes (letters/postcards) up to 20g, for a few European countries and outside Europe it is €0.78. If you want to send a package you are probably better off with a private courier company like TNT, DHL or UPS, as they offer quick and reliable services against competitive prices.

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This is version 9. Last edited at 7:42 on Jun 19, 17 by Utrecht. 7 articles link to this page.

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