If the entire east of Asturias has a major Indiano influence, this is undoubtedly most noticeable in the towns of Ribadesella, Llanes and Colombres.
The capital towns of the three coastal boroughs of eastern Asturias are uniquely beautiful, in addition to carrying the stamp of the wealth and architecture that the emigrants who made their fortunes in the Americas brought back home with them. Known as Indianos, in many cases they only returned as summer vacationers, but their presence is still felt in the major buildings of Ribadesella, Llanes and Colombres, as well as in many smaller towns and villages.
Ribadesella - Poo - Balmori - Poo - Vidiago - Pendueles - Borbolla - Llanes - Colombres - Villanueva
Day 1: Ribadesella - Cuevas del Agua - Ribadesella
Day 1: Ribadesella spreads out around the estuary where the River Sella flows into the sea. A long walk taking in the beach, the harbour, La Guía Chapel and the old quarter reveals the town's stately character. On this initial foray, you can find the first Indiano mansions in the vicinity of Santa María Beach and the Territory of Ribadesella Museum, located in a former Indiano schoolhouse dating from 1900. Next to the harbour, six tiled murals reproduce cartoons by cartoonist Antonio Mingote which trace a historical route. It is worth accessing the old quarter via the Travesía Oscura to see buildings such as the House of the Cave and the Prieto Cutre Family Mansion. Across the river, Tito Bustillo Cave is a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site. Visits are highly restricted and need to be booked in advance. However, the nearby newly-built Rock Art Centre enables you to get to know this ancient heritage. You can also discover the Cuevona or "Big Cave" in the village of Cuevas, just 4 kilometres from Tito Bustillo Cave. The only way of getting to the village is through this cavern.
Day 2: Ribadesella - Playa de Vega - Ribadesella
Day 2: There are many outdoor activities on offer outside the town of Ribadesella, ranging from horse riding to surfing, mountain biking to canoeing on the River Sella. You can also go hiking. The Cuerres Trail starts out from the town. Initially seven kilometres long and offering views of the Guadamía Estuary and its surroundings, it also links up with the Way of St James. Another option is to do the Mills Trail. This is circular path almost nine kilometres long which has an optional climb up to Moru Peak. It is also worth getting into the car to drive to Vega Beach, on the N-632 until you come to the turnoff to the beach two kilometres past San Esteban de Leces. This beach, one of the longest in Asturias, and the Entrepeñes area have been jointly declared a Natural Monument.
Day 3: Ribadesella - Llanes
Day 3: After Ribadesella, Llanes. In this borough you can follow the so-called Indiano Trail. This is a tour through different towns taking in the major examples of buildings raised by Asturians who emigrated to the Americas. Most of the buildings are privately owned and can only be viewed from the outside. You can start the day by taking the AS-263 from Ribadesella to Nueva, whose charm lies in the overall architecture of the village, and then head for Naves to discover its main square. Balmori houses the villa of Bartolomé González's widow, in addition to the fountain and washhouse, while Porrúa is home to the Ethnographic Museum, a donation made by one of these returning emigrants who had made their fortune in the Americas. La Pereda is home to a site including a chapel, skittle alley and chestnut grove. Vidiago retains old schoolhouses and villas with unique Modernist dormers, while Pendueles preserves the Verines Country House, Santa Engracia Mansion and Mendoza Cortina Mansion. La Borbolla is an ideal spot in which to view the main square and its country houses Heading for Llanes, you pass through La Arquera with its outstanding schoolhouse. You then detour to Poo, where you can see the Casona de la Jabariega, a Modernist country house dating from 1905, the Concha Garaña Villa, the church, the skittle alley, and the "Casino" social club. The day comes to an end in Llanes.
Day 4: Llanes - Playa de Toró
Day 4: The proposal for the fourth day is the town of Llanes, allowing you to enjoy a good walk and take a rest from driving. You can tour the historic-artistic site in the town centre, which includes the medieval walls and numerous examples of civil and religious architecture. Outside the old quarter, there are examples of Indiano architecture such as the House of Lions, Villa Concepción, the Marchioness of Argüelles Mansion, Villa Parres and the Junco Family House, as well as the "Casino" social club, the Avenida de La Paz and much more. Next to the harbour are the huge "Memory Cubes" by Basque sculptor Agustín Ibarrola. The coastal path allows you to leave the town and head to Toró Beach, a walk that takes barely an hour.
Day 5: Llanes - Colombres - Bustio
Day 5: The borough of Ribadedeva brings together the last Indiano villas in the east of Asturias. Its capital has been a listed Site of Cultural Interest since August 2013, due to the high concentration of Indiano architecture. Perhaps the best known example is the Guadalupe Estate, which houses the Indiano Archives. but you can also visit the cemetery, the main square and the town hall. The village of Villanueva also contains more examples of this type of architecture. You should not leave the borough without visiting La Franca Beach, El Pinal Cave, a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site, and Bustio harbour, the easternmost harbour in the region.