Covadonga's scenery, lakes and wildlife
History aside, the area around Covadonga and its monuments has lush meadows, snowy peaks and a massive diversity of animal and plant life that sees
forty different varieties of orchid, along with brown bears and golden eagles. If you want more then there are wild boars, wild horses, plus owls and various other birds of prey. The scenery is amongst the best in the world and the walking opportunities are as good as anywhere else in Europe. All lay just a few kilometers from this small locality.
The lakes of Covadonga
In the mountains above Covadonga lie two large lakes and on a clear day it is possible to see the Asturian coast and the ocean beyond.
These lakes have become a major tourist draw and you can travel to them by car, or go in one of the many mini-bus parties (and sometimes cavalcades) that visit them daily. If possible, do try to see these lakes outside the peak holiday periods of late July and August, or you may turn out to be one of several dozen others hoping to admire them in near isolation.
Further up the Picos de Europa there is a "mirrador" (i.e. an elevated viewing platform) and if you aspire to reach even greater elevations you can hike up to a refugio (or hostel) on the slopes of the mountain.
For more on the Picos de Europa mountains, see our main menu to the left.
Other things to see and do and when to visit
There is a famous statue of the priest hero “Pelayo” which most visitors choose to photograph and the spectacular basilica (church) of Covadonga must not be missed at any cost.
One thing to be aware of is the intense visitor interest in not just this town, but the entire area around the Picos de Europa, and you should select your visiting time based upon this knowledge. If you arrive in summer, you will be amongst the hoards and the tranquillity and peace of the area will be somewhat diminished as a result. Outside the summer months things are more peaceful, but the weather is less reliable. Good time to visit are in spring or autumn (the fall).
Numerous coach trips also descend upon Cavadonga during the busier times and waiting for the visitors from these buses to leave will allow you to enjoy a more tranquil Cavadonga experience.
Accommodation in and around Covadonga
You will have no trouble sourcing accommodation in and around Covadonga, especially in the vicinity of Cangas de Onis.
If you want something more remote and slightly less up market, then there are a number of refugios located in the mountain range and there are also some campsites for visitors with tents. Again it is important to plan your stay or booking in advance if you intend to visit during the summer months.
The photo to the left shows a rural hotel,less than 10 minutes drive from Cavadonga and Cangas de Onis, that we stayed in and which had a room charge of 50 euros per night including an excellent breakfast for two. There are plenty of hotels just like this one around the Picos de Europa.