We travel to Galicia in February each year to take advantage of the truly challenging weather conditions that the north-western most part of Spain has to offer! As we ascend into the mountains, the tracks which at lower levels are muddy and rocky turn into snowy trails at higher altitude.
After a hard day’s drive, it’s nice knowing that the evening will be spent relaxing by an open fire, eating tapas and sipping a well-deserved beer or wine before retiring to a comfy bed.
This trip is not for the faint-hearted, but if you really want to test yourself and your machine against the unpredictable elements, this is the adventure for you! Rest assured that you are always under our expert guidance and our top priority during the trip is to keep both you and your vehicle safe at all times.
We meet in Portsmouth for a morning departure on the overnight ferry to Santander. During the crossing you will be able to relax and get to know your guides and fellow travellers - it's always nice to get everyone together for dinner and a few drinks in the bar.
As soon as we disembark, we head to Leon, which is about a three-hour road drive. We stay the night in the centre of Leon, famous for its 13th century Gothic cathedral, and that evening we'll take a stroll to one of the city's many fantastic restaurants for our evening meal.
The real fun begins as we head up into the mountain after a quick stop in Puebla de Sanabria for coffee and lunch provisions. We head up on tracks which become more and more snow covered as we ascend, with tight turns and stunning views from the top. We spend the night in Ourense.
Today we again head up through the mountains and back up past the snow line to reach the Canon do Sil, returning to Ourense for a second night and another evening of fine tapas!
We head south from Ourense and onto the mountain tracks as we head to the Encore de Castrelo de Mino dam, from which the views are truly stunning, and then in the evening we head to Ribadavia.
We head into an area of mountains that was severely affected by forest fires in 2017. Some vegetation has returned, but mile upon mile of blackened trees give the drive a very surreal feel. We spend the night in Fofe in a family run hotel that is a former monastery.
In the morning we head towards the coast along tracks that appear to cling to the hillside and in the afternoon, we get to cross a stone bridge that was built in the 1400s, a few years before Columbus discovered America! In the evening we head to the city of Pontevedra for the weekend.
Time to leave the adventure and begin the journey to take the cruise-ship crossing from Santander to Portsmouth, arriving in the UK the following afternoon.
“This was our second trip with Ardent Off Road - we had previously been to Morocco and could not wait to explore Galicia with Russ and Andrew guiding us. From negotiating snow covered mountain trails to driving along the beach we had an absolute ball and hope to book another adventure soon.”
The weather can get chilly and it's not unusual for us to encounter snow so we'd advise being prepared for cold spells and winter weather. However, at the lower levels and towards the coast it will be milder.
Variety of terrain from lowland trails to rocky tracks in the peaks along with forests, wet ground and a drive on the beach on the Atlantic Coast! Galicia can be challenging at times, but under our expert guidance, all abilities will be able to safely navigate any obstacles!
Low-box, underbody protection and recovery points along with all terrain tyres.
We carry medical kits, our guides are all first-aid trained and we have emergency beacons to hasten location and evacuation in emergency situations. Lead vehicles have full recovery equipment which is tested before departure and we also carry a range of tools and spares.
A detailed requirements check-list will be sent to you six weeks before your departure date.
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