It is located under the protection of a hill sliding on its slope, on the banks of the river of the same name and in the centre of the south of the province of Lugo. The municipality of Sarria is made up of fifty-two parishes. The pilgrim who follows the Way of Saint James enters the Council of Sarria through the village of Perros, if he comes from Samos and joins with the one who does it through San Xil and who enters Sarria through Pintin and Calvor, in Aguiada to already together to cross San Mamede do Camiño and entering by the district of Vigo to visit Sarria, capital of the municipality, and to direct its steps towards Vilei, Barbadelo, Rente, A Serra, A Pena, Peruscallo, Cortiñas, Lavandeira, A Brea and Mogarde before leaving the municipality. In the municipality of Sarria, the remains of megalithic funerary monuments are evidence of population settlements dating back to the Neolithic period. From the Bronze Age there are still sequels in the Petroglyphs. Throughout the area there are numerous forts and the Romans also left their mark on the place, as funerary steles and remains of two Roman villas in Vilar de Sarria and San Antolín are preserved.
But in truth the history of this municipality begins with pilgrimages to the tomb of the Apostle. At the end of the 12th century, King Alfonso IX founded Vilanova de Sarria, granting it jurisdiction and turning it into a royal villa. The same king died in the town in the year 1230. Since the 13th century the lordship of Lemos and Sarria have gone in unison and Don Álvaro Núñez Osorio received, during the reign of Alfonso XI back in the 14th century, the title of Count of Trástamara, Lemos and Sarria. In the eighteenth century the house of Lemos and all its belongings passed into the hands of the House of Alba, as the last count of Lemos died without successor. In the 19th century, the French invasion, the confiscations and the Carlist Wars left their mark on the town, but at the end of that century the town began to re-emerge, the arrival of the railway and the consequent improvement in communications led to an increase in economic and commercial activity and with it new neighbourhoods, schools and hospitals were created. Today Sarria is a vital and dynamic town, capital of a fertile and rich region.
The old town of the medieval town of Sarria speaks of history and greatness. In Rúa Maior the visitor finds beautiful houses with galleries, 18th century palaces and the Hospital de San Antón, today it is the building of the current courthouse, it was built in the 16th century and was in use until 1821. The church of San Salvador from the 13th century and that of Santa Mariña, which was originally Romanesque but the current building dates from the 19th century, and in the highest part, guarding the town as it did many centuries ago, is what has become its emblem, the tower of Sarria, which is part of the old fortress that was built in the 13th century and destroyed in the year 1467 during the irmandiñas revolts. The Monastery of the Magdalena, is another of the representative monuments of Sarria, was founded on a hermitage by two Italian friars, the monastic complex was built between the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries and rebuilt in the sixteenth. The preventive prison, the Vaamonde house, which is the current town hall, the chapel of San Lazaro, from the 15th century, everything can be seen from a bird's eye view from a beautiful viewpoint presided over by a transept dominates almost the entire locality. But in Sarria you can also enjoy nature in its parks and walks along the rivers Sarria and Celorio which invite you to do so and where there is also, in the area of the Malecón, a wide range of restaurants where you can taste the rich gastronomy that Sarria offers.
Next to the Torreón is the Campo da Feira where one of the most visited and important fairs of the province is held, exhibiting livestock, typical products of the land and other belongings. In the surroundings of Sarria outdoor activities are also the delight of nature lovers. In addition the villages of Sarria also keep vestiges of the history of the zone. In Perros a humble and beautiful chapel dedicated to Nuestra Señora del Camino calls the attention. In Calvor the restored church of Santo Estevo is situated where once there was a monastery. The chapel of la Asunción of Aguiada; the church of Santiago in Barbadelo, O Mosteiro as it is also called, declared a national monument in 1976, is a great example of the Galician Romanesque of the tenth century and conserves a certain air of fortress, was part of a monastery that functioned as a hospital for pilgrims and depended on that of Samos. In Rente, A Serra, A Pena, Lavandeira and A Brea where the oak groves, the corridors, paths and shortcuts with streams surprise the intrepid visitor. Between Peruscallo and Cortiñas the Romanesque church of Santa María de Belante. In Morgade a curious fountain, the Fonte do Demo whose spout comes from the mouth of a demoniac figure. The house of Morgade that today is very deteriorated and the chapel of Trindade also form part of the important patrimony of the municipality of Sarria.
Sarria celebrates its patron saint festivities in honour of San Xoán on 24th June to Santa Mariña the festeja on 11th August and on 31st August the Noite Meiga is celebrated.
According to the tradition heard on the Way, as far as Barbadelo the servants of the Compostelan hoteliers arrived to deceive and dupe the pilgrims by offering them inns and services and when they accessed them they were swindled and scammed
I don't believe in meigas, but there are. In Sarria, as in other Galician towns, the Noite Meiga is celebrated on the last Saturday in August. Logically, the protagonists of the party can't be other than the meigas, the goblins, the darkness, the mythological beings. It is a pagan festival where mythology and mystery meet in the most hidden places and make the visitor travel to distant times. In this celebration the most important event is the Dance of the Noite Meiga.
Legend has it that in the village known as Castelo dos sete Infantes there was once a castle. One day the young lord of the fortress had to leave, to fight next to the king, to holy lands leaving his pregnant wife who would be his firstborn and left with the promise and hope of returning for his birth. At the time of such a happy event the young husband could not attend the birth of his children, if his children, for there were seven who came into the world. Frightened, the young mother decided to keep the first child that had been born and to make the others disappear, because she thought that her husband would not understand such a birth. He called one of his most trusted servants to take care of it, and the woman, placing the infants in a basket, prepared to fulfill the command and headed for the river, but on the way she met the lord of the castle who was returning from his battles, when he saw her, he asked her where she came from, and when she answered that she was a servant of the castle, he anxiously asked her about her wife's condition, to which the woman replied that she had been the father of a precious child. Then he became interested in what he carried in the basket and when the good maid was going to tell him that they were little dogs one of the children began to cry, when she lifted the blanket that covered them the woman told him the encomienda that had been ordered to what the gentleman told him that he would take care of his children but that she had to keep the secret, then the young father took them to the house of one of his vassals so that they would grow up under his tutelage. The years passed and the time came to celebrate the coming of age of the first-born, for this a great party was prepared and in the middle of it, when everything was jolgorio and joy, Mr. Gayoso, so called the owner of the castle, asked for a moment of silence and addressing the guests proudly told them: This feast is not only to celebrate my beloved son whom you already know, but also his other six twin brothers whom my good friend the Lord of Osorio has done me the favor of raising and educating, and who also deserve my love and the honors of my house, which is his, and between acclaims came the six infants with their mentor. So great was the impression of the wife when she saw her children whom she believed dead, that she vanished and died.
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Sarria can be reached via the LU-546 road that links it with Lugo and Monforte de Lemos, and the LU-633 road also connects it with Samos and Triacastela, on one side and Portomarín on the other, and the LU-P-5602 road brings the villages of Aguiada and Furela, among others, closer to Sarria. Another option is the LU-636 that reaches Sarria comes from the town of Becerreá in the middle of N-VI.
Sarria has a bus service that communicates with Lugo, Portomarín, Monforte de Lemos and Pedrafita do Cebreiro in different timetables and routes. The bus station is located in Matías López s/n street and the telephone number for further information is 982 532 620 or 982 530 125.
In Sarria the train station is in the street Calvo Sotelo, s/n and the telephone is the 982 530 787 and in her they have stop as much trains of regional route as national.
San Mamede do Camiño
Pintín de Arriba
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