Cultural Attractions

Castro de Santa Tegra:

Excavations of this Galician-Roman settlement began in 1913. The excavated area has uncovered the natural habitat of its former inhabitants. The urban outline includes wide squares and narrow alleys bordering groups of constructions, what could be called a quarter.

On the side of the road leading to the summit, some houses have been reconstructed. Most of them are round constructions and, in many cases, they comprise a hall with stone ovens. The different archeological founds discovered over the years have allowed to date the settlement to about 1 C BC, under Emperor Augustus. The site was finally abandones at the time of Julio-Claudio, which ended in the year 68 AD. Therefore the settlement belongs to the Roman period.

Iglesia Parroquial de Santa María:

In 1576, the Bishop of Tui, Don Diego de Torquemada, commissioned the construction of the church over the remains of a preroman temple from the 10 C. Among the vestiges from the former temple are the capitals and the stone ornaments, created in the Romanesque-Byzantine style.

The temple, set in the centre of the village, has a Latin-crossed floor plan, with 3 naves that contain the chapels. The chapels are decorated with several masterpieces, including the carvings executed by Cándido Sobrino, from A Guarda, and the old retables accomplished by Portuguese crafstmen. The retables have recently been dated back to 16 C and some of them have been discovered during the works of restoration.

The charm of this Romanesque church is enhanced by its Baroque façade, with large curves crowned by scrolls. Next to it stands the side tower, with a quadrangular ground plan, surmounted by a dome. A niche on the front is home to a stone sculpture of the patroness, created in 1796. The tower, fixed to the construction in the 19 C, is surrounded by a balcony along its entire perimeter, crowned by balls, a Baroque feature.

Inside the church and on the gravestones you may see the coats of arms of noble families, including the Varela, Falcón, Priegue, Sotomayor, Correa and Somoza.

Convento de San Benito:

The abbey of San Benito is an architectural group made up by the church and the Benedictine convent of Transfiguración del Señor. It is situated in the square of Chan de Conde, along the descent to the port. It was founded in 1558 by the brothers Ozores de Sotomayor. Shortly after its construction, several women of the family took the veil in this abbey.

The convent has been converted into a hotel, except for the church , a property of the bishopric, where religious services are held. The church possesses remarkable retables, sophisticated works of religious imagery and several sepulchres, mostly Baroque in style. The high altar contains the sepulchre of Alvaro Ozores de Sotomayor, probably the greatest contributor to the construction of the convent.

The church has undergone subsequent restorations. The last of these included a new choir and the restoration of the main stained-glass window. A small auditorium annexe was built for different cultural events.

Iglesia Parroquial de Salcidos:

This parish church is located at the entrance to A Guarda, at the foot of the road leading to the village, a few metres from the sanctuary of San Roque.

The edifice dates back to the reconstruction of an old temple, documented by 1530. The former construction has been remodelled over the centuries and the interior structure is all that remains from it.

In 1760 was built the high altar, commissioned by Abbot Juan Ponce de León.

Iglesia San Caetano:

This 17 C church is located in the quarter of A Cruzada, in A Guarda.

It is set in a strategic position, especially for the ships sailing near the coast.

Note the interesting bell, in its interior, donated by an English ship that was saved from a wreck by the view of the hermitage among the mist.

Santuario San Roque:

This sanctuary is situated a few metres from the parish church of Salcidos. Its Neogothic style contrasts with the Romanesque temples that predominate in the area.

It rises on the site of a 17 C hermitage.

Note the 18 C stone cross in front of the façade.

Ermita de Santa Tegra:

This hermitage is set on the summit of the mountain of Santa Tegra. It has been the object of a great deal of pilgrimages over the centuries. With the passing of time, it underwent several renovations and enlargements due to the growing number of pilgrims. The ceremony of the Voto, which was celebrated for the first time in the 14 C at the end of a severe drought, continues to be held every year.

The consecutive works of restoration have uncovered some aspects of the temple. An example of these is the supposition that the hermitage began construction at the time of the Galician-Roman settlement.

From the Visigothic time remains a sepulchre inside the A Casa Dos Cregos, an edifice close to the hermitage. The interior archs date back to the 15-16 C, along with the panels representing the Virgen del Mar and San Pablo. The exterior buttresses date from the 18 C, the same as the Baroque retables of the side buttresses. The hermitage contains two important relics. On one side is the fragment of Santa Tegra´s arm, sent by the Archbishop of Tarragona. On the other side, a piece of Lignum Crucis.

In the surrounding area can be visited the Cova da Santa or Cama da Santa. According to tradition, this cavity in the stone was used as a resting place by the saint. On the stone are crosses made by pilgrims and devotees. It was a custom of its inhabitants to light a candle when a sailor disappeared in the sea. It was a way of asking the Virgin for the recovery of their bodies

Molinos de Viento:

The only wind mills preserved in the Baixo Miño are located in A Guarda.

Built in the 17 C, the mills were virtually abandoned at the beginning of the 20 C.

Worthy of note are those of:

  • A Guía,
  • Solanas,
  • A Cruzada and
  • the three located in Camposancos.

Torre do "Reló":

In the town hall square, also known as “Praza do Reló” rises this tower, commissioned by Bishop Diego de Torquemada in the 16 C. It was basically a defensive bastion, due to its strategic position from which the enemies could be seen entering the village by the sea.

Curiously enough, the clock that gave its name to the tower was fixed to the tower several centuries after the tower was completed.

On the tower can be seen several family arms that have been added over the years. Among them are those from the Bishop of Torquemada and the Barquiño, granted by King Fernando III for the participation of troops from A Guarda in the capture of Sevilla. Years later, when the emblasoned houses were demolished, the coats of arms of families such as the Correa, Ozores, Sotomayor, Pereira and Zúñiga were attached to the tower walls.

Centro Cultural:

This edifice, at present the centre of the cultural activities of the municipality, was financed , almost entirely, by emigrants from A Guarda who returned from Latin America.

The former design, by architect Tomás Bilbao Sertucha, was that of a hospital-home. Built in granite, in 1990 the construction underwent a complete restoration and became the new cultural centre. The centre offers different exhibitions and cultural events all year round. It also houses the public library of the municipality.