Seclusion, serenity and rest for the
spirit are easy to find in this landscape: the peaceful and lush
Ribeira Sacra. The first written mention of this 'Rivoyra
Sacrata' dates from August 1124. It is an area between the
provinces of Lugo and Ourense and the banks of rivers Miño and
Sil. It is the greatest gathering of religious buildings from
the Romanesque period of Europe.
The village of Portomarín can be considered the northern gateway of the Ribeira Sacra.
The large amount of monasteries, churches and chapels is not the only hypothesis about the origin of the name. The historian Manuel Vidán sees the root in the Latin word "robur" which comes from "oak" and relates to the Celtic tradition regarding oaks. They were considered sacred trees, the guardians of the tribe; thus being the reason of venerating woods because of their presence. The set of historical -artistic and natural heritage of the Ribeira Sacra has been proposed to UNESCO for its recognition as a World Heritage Site.
A walk through the Romanesque
We already know the elements located in the village of Portomarín itself. However, the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Belesar Dam and the new town of Portomarín can not forget the extraordinary heritage hosted in the surrounding area.