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Cantabria

UNESCO Sites

Our most recommended Cantabria UNESCO Sites

Cantabria: El Castillo Caves & Pasiego Valleys Day Trip

1. Cantabria: El Castillo Caves & Pasiego Valleys Day Trip

Discover the jewels of Cantabria with a visit to the fascinating caves of El Castillo and Las Monedas. Drive through the picturesque villages and rivers of the Pasiegos Valleys. Learn about the region's history at the ethnographic Museum of Vega de Pas. Explore the famous Caves of El Castillo and Las Monedas, both World Heritage Sites by UNESCO since 2008 for their cave paintings. Visit an authentic cave with paintings from the Paleolithic era. Marvel at the legacy our ancestors left us thousands of years ago. Next, take a walk through the town of Puente Viesgo, enjoying views over the Pas river. Make the most of your time in the area by eating at a local restaurant. Then, sit back and enjoy a scenic drive around the Pasiego Valleys crossing valleys, rivers, and mountains until you reach the Mountain Pass of Estacas de Trueba. The landscape on the way is spectacular and will leave you enchanted. Conclude the drive at the waterfall that forms the source of the Yera River. Make your way to Vega de Pas, a small town nestled between mountains, known for being one of the authentic Pasiego villages. Visit the Ethnographic Museum of the Tres Villas Pasiegas. Understand how the Pasiegos used to live from your guide. On the back to Santander, make a stop to soak in the magnificent views over the Cantabrian Mountains offered by the Mirador de la Braguía.

From Santander: Santillana del Mar & Altamira Museum Tour

2. From Santander: Santillana del Mar & Altamira Museum Tour

Depart from Santander at 9:30 AM and head to Santillana del Mar, a beautiful village of the Middle Ages. This village with is one of the best-known cultural and tourist centers of Cantabria. You will enjoy a walking tour along its cobbled streets until you reach its Plaza Mayor where you will see the Collegiate Church of Santa Juliana. There you will visit the museum of the local sculptor Jesús Otero. Afterward, you will have some free time to visit the Collegiate if you wish and do some shopping around. Afterward, you will head to the Altamira Museum. This museum houses a scale replica of the 'room of paintings', the so-called Neocave. This cave was declared World Heritage by Unesco in 1985. To protect its preservation, it currently allows only 5 people to visit it per week and this is the reason they created this replica from the cave. The cave is a natural cavity in the rock, with paintings dated from 35,600 years ago and it stands as one of the most important pictorial and artistic cycles of prehistoric paintings int he world.

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What people are saying about Cantabria

Overall rating

5.0 / 5

based on 2 reviews

We really enjoyed this tour of Santillana del Mar and Altamira museum. Gabriella was a wonderful guide, informative, helpful and kind. We learnt so much about this beautiful part of the world and it’s early inhabitants. Both stops were spectacular and I would highly recommend this tour.

It is a luxury to know the interior of Cantabria and discover the beauty of the Valles Pasiegos. I have never seen such a bright green in such a unique landscape. The waterfall of the Yera river and the panoramic route to get there is amazing. Looks like New Zealand. Gotta go!

The whole excursion very well the guide Clara has explained everything during the journey. The caves very well and a great guide. Highly recommended excursion.