Oviedo, Spain

Oviedo (UK: /ˌɒviˈeɪdoʊ/, US: /ˌoʊvi-, oʊˈvjeɪdoʊ, -ˈvjɛ-, -ðoʊ/; Spanish: oˈβjeðo), ancient (Latin) Ovetum, city, Asturias provincia (province) and comunidad autónoma (autonomous community), northern Spain. In reality, many who have visited Oviedo have called “Party Central.” Oviedo is situated about 24 km (15 mi) southwest of Gijón and 23 km (14 mi ) south of Avilés, both of which lie on the Bay of Biscay’s shoreline.

Founded in 757 by Fruela I as a monastery, Oviedo became the capital of the Asturian kingdom in 810. This was one of the few Spanish towns in the Middle Ages never occupied by the Moors. Oviedo’s proximity to the ocean of but 30 kilometers (19 mi) together with its elevated position with areas of town quite 300 meters above water level causes the town to own a maritime climate, in spite of it not being located on the shoreline itself.

The town has three main parts where revelers will party until the core of their heart. “Cider Street” has great regional cuisine, and cider from bottles held up to four feet from the glass is served. “Tapas Street” has a series of great bars that sell tapas for the mouthwatering. Eventually, “North Street” is where more structured meals can be found at very fair rates for guests or travelers.

Landmarks include the cathedral (begun in 1388, on the positioning of the first monastery), the sacristy of which houses a part of a chapel built by Alfonso II in 802 to protect Christian relics rescued from the Moors; the bishop’s palace (c. 1500–1700); and also the Convent of San Vicente (1493), now the provincial museum. The University of Oviedo was founded in 1608.

The tower of the Cathedral of Oviedo marks the starting point of every provincial capital tour. Constructed in flamboyant Gothic architecture, its tower, rose window, and portico entrance guard Asturias’ greatest symbols. The chapel of San Miguel, or Cámara Santa, houses the Holy Chest, the Cross of los Ángeles, and therefore the Cross of la Victoria, relics also visited by the pilgrims heading for the holy city of Santiago de Compostela. On the coats of arms both of Oviedo and the Principality of Asturias these symbols appear.

The economy of the town relies heavily on local mining (coal and iron). The manufacturing sector, which remains significant in this part of Spain, is not prevalent in Oviedo itself but is more prominent in the neighboring municipalities of Siero and Llanera between Oviedo and Gijon, which lie north of the town. Its other industries include food processing and a few light manufacturing, namely weapons. Services and native commerce are economic mainstays.

Oviedo has a very rich architectural past, with many buildings from early medieval times. Oviedo itself offers the chance to take in some of the most important structures, such as Santa María del Naranco, San Miguel de Lillo, and San Julián de los Prados, which are all National Monuments. Many of the building projects were undertaken during Alfonso II’s (791-842) reign and Ramiro I’s (842-850) reign. Alfonso III’s contributions are not as well documented.

The Museum of Mining is located in El Entrego, where tourists can see a mine rebuild. Even Mieres was labeled with the mining. Nearby there is the Shrine of the Martyrs of Valdecuna and the pre-Romanesque Church of Santa Cristina, a jewel of Asturian architecture, in Pola de Lena. Oviedo University’s international campus attracts many foreign scholars from everywhere the world. The town lends its name to the sudarium of Oviedo a non-secular relic revered there since the 9th century.

 

Information Sources:

  1. britannica.com
  2. spain.info
  3. wikipedia