Galicia in particular and Northern Spain in general have long been considered to be a hidden jewel in the entire Spanish tourist industry and hidden away within Galicia itself are some further jewels and we are going to examine Rias Baixas further.
If you look at all of the autonomous regions that make up modern day Spain, Galicia has to be the most remote and hidden away within that remoteness lies Rias Baixas.
Historically, always classed as the poorer cousin to some of the other richer regions Galicia had an economy that did not easily lend itself to modernisation and herein lies a paradox in that it is this very reluctance to embrace modernity throughout that gives the region much of its appeal as far as tourism is concerned.
The natives of Galicia if you trace them back far enough have origins very similar to their Celtic cousins in the north and are justifiably proud of their language and culture and these connections no matter how stretched or tenuous give them their sense of regionalism and uniqueness.
Galicia always seemed to be a very closed and inward looking area being fiercely resistant to any formal external invasion and in many ways this degree of isolation was very much driven by the geographical location of the region.
Slowly but surely in the 20th century, Galicia began to develop and today traditional lifestyles rub shoulders with modernity throughout the region whilst at the same time the region has lost none of its more traditional culture and within the tourism economy this is starting to show real benefits.
This southern part of Galicias west coast consists of a series of four Rias or inlets set amongst pine covered hills and really is a most beautiful location.
The beaches on this part of the coast are extremely good, the scenery is terrific and beaches are extremely safe for tourists to bathe in and given that the climate is much milder than on the wild Coast to the north and you can understand why there is such an appeal for this part of Galicia for tourists.
This part of the Galician coast is very much the most popular part and whilst as has been said that the beaches are good they are perhaps not as good as those found further north round the Coast da Morte.
The Rias Baixas is very much the coastal tourist attraction as far as most Galicians are concerned and the description of the area can be very confusing. Firstly there is this general conception that the Rias are like Norwegian Fjords and whilst there may be an argument to be had on this issue further north, in the Rias Baixas the waters are very shallow and the beaches very sandy. The majority of the quality shell fish provided by Galician fishermen is farmed and caught in this area.
There are parts of the coast line of the Rias Baixas that are popular but by and large the coast is unspoilt. The areas around Vilagarcia de arousa and Panxon are the made tourist areas but there are quieter areas of the Rias such as the stretch of coast between Muros and Noia.
This part of the Galician coastline provides some of the richest and most fertile fishing areas on the entire Spanish coast and the climate in this area is such that it produces the finest in Galician Wines.