1 Solar Celestine Citadel
We have to go to Gijón to discover -literally, since the citadel is hidden in a neighboring courtyard which is accessed through a corridor- a treasure of our recent heritage. The complex was hidden from view from the main street, today the access is located at Calle de Capua nº 17.
It is a group of workers' houses that were inhabited until the end of the XNUMXth century. In 2003 they were rehabilitated by the Gijón City Council and since 2018 they have been opened to the public under the management of the Asturias Railway Museum, thus already included in the network of museums of the Gijón City Council.
The houses had a corridor (5 m²), two rear rooms without a window (10 and 6 m²) and two other rooms with a window to the patio of 7,5 m². About 36 square meters. The hundred inhabitants of the citadel shared a toilet, a well and a laundry room.
In 1877 Celestino Solar, an Indian who returned from Cuba with a certain fortune, bought the site and built the Twenty-four brick and wood houses for poor workers from Gijón. We can visit one of the houses recreated with period furniture, the small room with a cupboard, two sleeping rooms with a bed and a small table, the small coal kitchen with a stone sink...
The Citadel of Gijon
Quite a history lesson, a visit that should be obligatory since there are very few examples left in Spain...
2 Perlora resort town
Was tourist complex located in the Asturian council of Carreño, promoted by the State in 1954 and which was abandoned in the 80s. The residential city came to acquire national renown and in summer "shifts" were taken to enjoy the surroundings and the four nearby beaches: Huelgues, La Isla, Playa of «Los Curas» and Carranques.
Some prestigious architects such as Julio Galán, Juan Manuel del Busto, Juan José Suárez Aller or Miguel Díaz Negrete designed the houses and common areas.
The complex currently is in a state of semi-abandonment, all the houses are uninhabited and the public buildings are unused, but their decay attracts many tourists.
It is possible to visit the facilities by train (Renfe Gijón-Cudillero line) or by the AS-239 road.
3 Monastery of San Antolín de Bedón
On the banks of the River Bedón, in Llanes. The first written references to the monastery date back to the 1205th century, although they are extracts from lost original documentation. It was probably at the beginning of the XNUMXth century when the monastery accepted the Benedictine rule and work began on the church, as recorded in an inscription: the work was started by Abbot Juan in XNUMX. The church was listed as a "historical-artistic monument". » and It is currently a Site of Cultural Interest. (B.I.C.).
We include this monument in this list because the legend that surrounds it. So they say that the Count of Muñazán, Munio Rodriguez Can, son of a noble Asturian family, had a very difficult character. One day, hunting in the vicinity of Bedón, he fell on him at night. He looked out the window of a hidden cabin and saw a very beautiful young woman. She slipped out the door and disappeared. The count returned to his castle in as bad a mood as usual and in the following days, he approached that place again. Looking out the window he saw the young woman again with a boy who had just returned from the king's campaigns. Without thinking, he shot two arrows, the first for her and the second for the young man. After the event, he felt bad and decided to sell all his properties, keeping a small sum with which he built a monastery and a church in the place where he killed the two young men.
4 Mengollo, the legend of a cursed town
Another town with an interesting legend. It is a town in the municipality of Quirós, located in the shelter of a rocky ridge, at more than a thousand meters of altitude. Few 30 neighbors who died at a stroke in the year 1854. In Mengollo they lived on their farmland dedicated to corn, potatoes and spelled.
In the mentioned year, in the month of April, after several months incommunicado due to the snow, the priest went up to give mass. Silence accompanied him in the last meters and he discovered the corpses of the neighbors. He left the place at a gallop, and returned with a retinue that would examine the strange circumstances, since there were no signs of violence. They attributed the deaths to the consumption of sweet bread, made at that time. Something poisoned the food.
The ruins of three houses together with several auxiliary constructions are, to this day, the mute witness of an unsolved mystery. Iker Jiménez himself was interested in this story and a team from "Fourth millennium" approached the town of Quirosana.
5 Mina de Arnao, a mine under the sea
Already in the time of Philip II, coal extraction began, so Arnao becomes the first documented mineral coal mine in the Iberian Peninsula.
In 1833, the foundation of the Real Compañía Asturiana de Minas de Cobón represents a momentous milestone in Spanish industrialization. The Arnao mine will have its galleries excavated under the sea, becoming the only underwater mine in Europe, and will also build the first vertical well, the "grandfather well" of Asturian mining.
Nowadays you can visit the museum, the castle and go down to the XNUMXth century galleries, you can also visit the working class town which was built to provide shelter for the miners (it has schools, a store... and it was one of the largest and most interesting company towns in Asturias until the state promotions of the mid-XNUMXth century).
Arnao, a town 7 kilometers from the city of Avilés, has an unusual mine entrance that is cut into…
Text: © Ramón Molleda for asturias.com