I took off to Lugo thinking that I should have gone to Barcelona. Now that I’ve relocated to England, Europe has been opened to me like never before thanks to Ryan Air’s SUPER budget offers and I am itching to revisit some of my favorite spots that I failed to document properly since I wasn’t in the travel blogging business. But like many other Londoners, money is tight so when given the change to do some affordable countryside travel, I jumped at the opportunity. The last time I went to Spain, I was 15 and I went with 15 of my closes family members from Texas and it was a week filled with fun, sightseeing, and me throwing up my brains out since the drinking age was basically lowered to “if you can see above the bar.”
My cousins are the best.
Now that I was heading to middle-of-no-where Spain, I will admit that I was second guessing my decision to visit an old college roommate, but damn how could I refuse to see her after nearly two years of being apart! When I landed in the Santiago De Campostella Airport, there was one other person waiting for the bus and that was it. No one to help me. No English translations. Nada. Which is retrospect, was fantastic, since this is how I lived the last 1.5 years of my life in Asia. England has clearly made me soft.
After a 2 hour bus into town through the winding green hills of Galicia, I finally arrived and was greeted by the open welcoming arms of my former roommate. She took me back to her 3 bedroom apartment, of which she pays 1/4 of my rent for, and we immediately started catching up on plans, grad school, and what not. We headed to the closes market to grab food supplies since I’m the world’s pickiest eater and since everyone was half-asleep during the “siesta” period. I grabbed at least 600 grams of different cured Spanish meat and I expected to pay 20 GBP for it… I paid 5 Euros for it.
Basically, I’m moving to Lugo.
Lugo, Spain has a rich Roman history that you can read more about here and it’s incredibly safe. In fact, I didn’t see a police officer ONCE because there simply isn’t a need for such heightened security. I assume that’s because everyone is sleeping during most of the day and too drunk to commit major crimes at night.
Krystle took me to a “pro-basket ball game” that was actually RIVETING since the score for the 3rd game in the final series came down to the final shot seconds before the buzzer. Despite the fact that LeBron could basically be a one man team and dominate the league, the fans LOST THEIR DAMN MIND for all 48 minutes and every timeout in-between. They brought drums, sound guns, and these fantastic scarfs that they held up with furious pride for the entire game. When “we” won, the other team gracefully accepted defeat by chanting for us? It was strange, but also inspiring.
The food in Lugo is fantastic… if you’re visiting Lugo. I heard from sources on the ground that Spanish food in general gets boring if you actually live in Spain and you’re not just passing by because there is very little variety in town. You get Spanish food and that’s it, all year round. No Mexican, Indian, or Thai. Sorry. At nearly every bar, we would pay 1 or 2 Euros for a drink and then we would get a FREE tapa with whatever we purchased. After 3 or 4 drinks, you’ll have a nice buzz on without the fear of getting too drunk on an empty stomach since you’ve been eating the whole time. I think that’s super responsible and helpful when it comes to my budget and my stomach.
On the weekend, we took a trip to a nearby city by bus to enjoy the hot springs at Termas Chavasqueira for 5 Euros where we sun bathed in super hot water, transitioned to hot water, and then relaxed in warm water before we inevitably transitioned to COLD ASS FREEZING water. To be specific. This was super soothing for my aching CrossFit muscles and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys watching old people soak.
Horseback riding was the highlight of my trip because I love being outside. We took a 1/2 hour bus to the outskirts of Lugo to go horseback riding at Casa Cazoleiro. We received a recommendation from one of Krystle’s co-workers and were picked up by one of the employees at the ranch/hotel. Basically, we got into a car with a complete stranger and drove into the middle of no where, as solo female travelers do, and pulled into this AMAZING family owned hotel. We were greeted by 4 GIANT dogs who were tall enough to be 6’5″ on their hind legs. We rode through bushes, galloped up a mountain, and witnessed some of the most spectacular scenery I’ve ever seen. More on this on a later blog post.
Overall, I would have to say that Lugo is one of the most SAFE cities I’ve ever been to. We walked home at 6:30 am after parting and dancing all night without a second thought. It’s affordable, welcoming, and there’s plenty to do outdoors for the more adventurous type. Drop what you’re doing and go to Lugo!