Corcubion is a quiet Spanish fishing village on a sheltered ocean inlet. It has its own long beach of white sand and is ideally situated for exploring both Low and High Rías (estuaries) of the Galician coast.
On a side street from its pretty harbour, where fishing boats and small yachts bob gently, is the Pirate’s House. We wouldn’t dare make it up: it really was the home of one Julio Escoja, who liked to scupper ships in the harbour for their merchandise.
Although a stone entrance arch from around 1600 bears witness to its antiquity, there are no no rapiers, cannon or skull-and-crossbone motifs. What we have here today is a bijou holiday home.
The pirate’s hideaway is chic and smart from top to bottom.
Designed with romance for two in mind, it can nevertheless accommodate en extra child, thanks to a good downstairs sofa-bed and bathroom.
The downstairs area is divided between a neat kitchen (note: the polished stone work surface and Smeg fridge, where a bottle of bubbly greets your arrival) and dining area (seats four) and a sitting area with sofa and two comfortable armchairs.
If there are three of you, this area converts into a sleeping area with its own flat screen TV and bathroom. The ceiling is oak and the interior, painted white, has a suitably seaside atmosphere to it.
The upstairs interior is one huge, high-ceilinged bedroom. From the large (super-comfortable) double bed you look round an imaginatively decorated room, with coloured leaded glass windows, wide mirrors, candelabra and an antique, usable bathtub which sits on feet in its own corner. It supplements an en-suite bathroom. From the bed you can also watch a large flat screen TV and DVD.
Doors open to small balcony on the narrow street which already starts to back onto countryside. There’s a balcony table and chairs here. Bear in mind there’s no sea view: the harbour is only a harpoon’s throw away, but you’re down a side street and there’s another house opposite.
It’s a village house, so you’re not invisible to neighbours, but it is very quiet here. Close by is the waterfront, and both free parking and a supermarket are a short walk away.
Follow the marina road round and you come to Corcubión Tourist Office, and from here it’s about another 5 minutes’ walk to Quenxe beach and 300 metres of fine, white sand.
This was in 2016 a Blue Flag beach, which means it has been singled out for its water quality, environmental management, safety and services. It’s just right for families and there are bars and restaurants close by.
What you have here is a genuine fishing village where the sea remains the most important thing in people’s lives and the local economy, which is also supported by tastefully low-key tourism. We liked the seafront walk and to stroll round the old town, one of the best preserved on the Costa da Morte.
Fancy learning to sail? Rustical Travel clients can also take advantage of a special deal with the local sailing club. An hour and a half's professional practical tuition for 20 euros each (in 2015) around Corcubión Bay can be arranged for you. If you prefer a kayak to a sailing boat, the same deal is available.
We find Corcubión’s location particularly interesting as it sits on its own ría estuary in the northern reaches of the famed Rías Baixas, and yet only a short drive round from the dramatic cliffs of the Rías Altas.
Go south from Corcubion, following the coast road, and you soon come to Mount O Pindo. This granite massif is not only a great rocky hill to climb and look down upon the Atlantic Ocean and its beaches, it is also the repository of legends. Sometimes called the “Celtic Olympus”, some strange inscriptions or a cult of the sun and stars led to its being excommunicated by bishops and kings. Other stories speak of the fabulous treasure of Queen Lupa. There are rock formations of animal and monster and a wealth of medicinal plants on its flanks. Grass is said to grow prodigiously fast overnight on Mount Pindo.
Continue south to Carnota beach, which is simply magnificent. The longest and most impressive by far in Galicia, it has 6.5 km of white sand in a stunning natural enclave.
Go north and in a few minutes you arrive at Finisterre and its lighthouse at the “end of the world.”
Further up the coast is Cape Vilán lighthouse at pretty Camariñas, from where a good 19 km dirt track follows the coastline round to Arou and Camelle. There are some spectacular views and gorgeously unspoilt beaches, such as Playa del Trece. Kite-surfing is popular along this stretch of coast.
If you can tear yourselves away from the sea for a day, then do visit the jewel of granite architecture and history that is Santiago de Compostela. You can drive there on a cross-country route that won’t take more than an hour and a half.
You may even join the last stage of the Pilgrims Way into Santiago de Compostela from the cottage and return by bus.
This is Galicia, so good eating is guaranteed. There are restaurants by the marina and beach in Corcubión, and a butcher’s near the house offers ready-made canalone and homegrown roast pork dishes to take away.