Costa Verde Portugal & Galicia Spain Hotels, Airports, Roads & Railways

Above is a picture of the River Mino taken from the Portuguese side of the river near Melgaco. If you look closely where the arrows point you can see the rail track for the Spanish Rio Mino Railway with arguably the finest views of any train journey in the whole Iberian peninsula; even better than the famous Rio Douro railway. Below are some useful information links to Costa Verde & Galician web sites, plus details on airport, train, road and ferry connections for this area.

Vigo Airport (Spain) - Literally just 20 to 25 minutes up the road from the villa, it is the nearest airport to our home with both Iberian and International flights.

La / A Caruna Airport (Spain) - Around 90 minutes from here, it has a budget (Vueling) service to London Heathrow and also flights to International flights to places such as Paris.

Santiago de Compestela Airport (Spain) - Around 60 minutes from here, it has a budget (Ryanair) flights to London (Stanstead), Frankfurt and Rome, a Vueling service to Paris (Charles de Gaulle), plus flights within Spain.

Porto / Oporto Airport (Portugal) - An easy (mostly motorway) hour drive from this villa has direct flights to Amsterdam, Barcelona, Bordeaux, Brussels, Caracas, Cologne, Dublin, Frankfurt, Funchal, Geneva, Lisbon, Liverpool, London (Gatwick, Heathrow & Stansted), Luxembourg, Lyon, Madrid, Marseille, Milan, New York (Newark), Nice, Palma Mallorca, Paris (Beauvais, Charles de Gaulle & Orly), Ponta Delgada, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Stuttgard and Zurich, with many more destinations via Lisbon / Lisboa.

Vigo - Valenca - Viana - Porto Railway - This is the current antiquated coastal service; well worth the ride for the scenery but not exactly a modern express service. However, the Vigo-Porto extension of the existing high speed RAVE service between Braga, Porto, Coimbra, Lisbon and Faro is mandated to be completed by 2015; this will allow you to embark a train in Valenca and disembark in Lisbon 2 hours later, with extensions / connections to the high speed Spanish and European networks via Vigo, Porto and Lisbon. RAVE Iberia Rail Project. More details on the Iberian High Speed Rail Network here.

Spanish Railway System - for the local routes just across the river, just type in the station names such as Vigo or Salvaterra and your destination. These are not shown on some railway maps such as Wikipedi's Spanish High Speed Rail Map but they do exist! In fact, the Diurno service runs along virtually the length of the Rio Miño (River Minho) on the Spanish side; an infrequent and fairly slow train but surely having one of the most beautiful views of any train journey; certainly as good as the famous Rio Douro train service.

Santander (Spain) - Plymouth (UK) Passenger Ferry - Santander takes about 5 hours by car to reach from this property.

The Spanish Motorway System - Just up the road from here is the Autovia 52 (A-52)(Autovia de Rias Baixas), a primarily 2 lane motorway that takes you ultimately to Vigo to the west and central Spain to the East (and the ferry ports above). Spain has an excellent motorway system, the third largest in the world.

The Portuguese Motorway System - From Valenca down to Porto and beyond (Lisbon) is the A3 AKA IP3 toll based motorway network. Around 8 Euros per car to Porto, the road is an exceptionally scenic one and a highly pleasant drive as there is very little traffic (except in peak hours between Braga and Porto). Once you get past Porto en route to Lisbon, the A3 has the unfortunate distinction of being the most accident prone motorway in western Europe, which is why the high speed train service is so important; you will drive the IP3 to Lisbon back once and only once!

Northern Portugal Road Map - Showing the main routes of Northern Portugal from Valenca through Braga and Porto to Aveiro.

Galicia Spain Road Map - Online map with excellent download option so you can print up quite a detailed map of Galicia.

Moncao Web Site - Portuguese only and very basic, but with dates of festivals and some good pictures of the big Coca (Dragon) Festival in May / June plus other events.

Hotel Termas de Moncao - Four star hotel just 3 minutes drive from here and just above the river park area.

Hotel Rural Convento dos Capuchos - Lovely boutique hotel 3 minutes drive from here and very close to the town centre.

Quinta de Santo Antonio - Boutique hotel between Moncao and Melgaco.

Hotel Monte Prado Melgaco Another 4 star hotel, this time 15 minutes drive from here in Melgaco.

Casa Das Breas Salvaterra is a good rustic hotel just over the river from this villa in Galicia, Spain.

Pousada Sao Teotonio Hotel Valenca is 3 star hotel in one of the best locations; in the old walled city overlooking the River Minho.

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