Who knew that Spain had one of the best beaches in the world, compared to the beaches in the caribbean for its crystal clear water and white sands. But beware, you might want to check the temperature of the water before diving in, unless you are used to swimming in freezing cold water.
The Cíes Islands are an archipelago off the coast of northern Spain. Its an easy day trip from Vigo, Spain and there are several companies that have daily ferries. It’s a 40 minute trip, each way. Keep in mind that the island has a daily limit of people allowed in order to protect its environment so if you are planning on visiting you should buy your ferry tickets in advance. You do not want to go all the way to Vigo and get stuck in the city because you didn’t think ahead.
The first thing you will notice, upon arrival, is the bay of Playa de Rodas on your left side, a big sand strip linking the island of Monteagudo and El Faro. On your right side you will see Areíña and Muxieiro beaches. If you follow the main walking path you will come to a point where you either go right or left. To your right side you will spot Figueiras beach. We got to the Island pretty early and this beach was empty compared to the first ones we saw so, we decided to pick a spot. Only later we noticed the reason for the small amount of people, it’s a beach for nudists.
The island is also known for its hiking paths and breathtaking views. Like good explorers we decided to go up to Alto do Príncipe, 111 meters above sea level. From here you can see both islands, a must do! You will also notice the Cadeira da Raiña, a rock that looks just like a chair, hence the name Queen’s Chair.
During the afternoon, we decided to explore the other side of the Island. We walked back towards the camping site, stopped for some ice cream and found the small Nossa Señora beach where you can overlook the Viños Island.
Make sure you go back an half an hour before your ferry departs and find the right line since there are several companies doing this path. Most people leave the islands on the last 2 to 3 scheduled ferries so don’t get alarmed if you see thousands of people impatiently waiting to get back to the main land.
Let me know if you are planing a visit soon, will be happy to offer you some insights!